Strategy Guide - Guide for NFL 2K1
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TABLE OF CONTENTS -INTRODUCTION -GAME BASICS -TEAMS -PLAYBOOK -GAME MODES -SEASON MODE -CUSTOMIZE INTRODUCTION It's that time of year again. School is back in session, amber colored leaves rustle in the breeze, and the football season is underway. And what better time of year to attempt to steer your favorite NFL team to the Super Bowl? The latest installment of Sega Sports' football franchise, NFL 2K1, is here to blow you away. With improved graphics, more modes of play, and even a network option, this game not only demands consideration as the greatest football game ever, but may possibly be the ultimate sports game. Period. With eight modes of gameplay NFL 2K1 is going to take you deeper into the football world than you've ever been before. While the game's Season mode is it's bread and butter, other modes will let you concentrate on everything from getting your team ready for the playoffs to re-signing your star players. Just be sure and have an extra VMU or two. Only one game save can be placed on a VMU, thereby limiting you to one mode at a time. While the unique nature of each game prohibits this guide from being able to walk you through an entire season, it does provide plenty of explanations and tips on each mode of play. Also, the core playbook, team schedules, and descriptions for each of the game's numerous options can all be found here. And be sure to check out the page of screenshots. Some of the more memorable moments during play have been captured in an in-your-face style via the in-game replay cameras. GAME BASICS If you're looking for some really essential basics on how to play this game, or want to know how to make it snow in Miami, you've come to the right place. Football is one of the most complicated sports on our great planet. And in making a true to life simulation of it, this game can seem overwhelming to a newcomer. To help remedy this, check below for pointers, overviews of button controls, and some extra tips. But, if you really are new to the game, you may be best served by playing the game's Tutorial mode. OFFENSE You are on offense when your team has control of the ball. Your goal--to move the ball into the opponent's endzone. To do so, you have a multitude of running and passing plays at your disposal. You will have 4 plays or "downs" to move the ball. If, by the end of these 4 downs, you have not gone 10 yards, your opponent retains possession of the ball. Whenever you successfully make it ten yards further down the field, you are given a "first down". Consider it 4 more chances. While on offense you have certain rules to remember: 1) you cannot pass the ball beyond the line of scrimage (shown in blue), 2) you cannot throw the ball out of bounds unless you are outside of the tackles, and 3) don't move before the ball is snapped. There are actually tons of rules in the game of football. Most of them are obvious, and others are just obscure. Let the game's keen-eyed zebras worry about it though. If they nail you for commiting a foul, don't do it again. Well, don't get caught doing it again he he he. OFFENSIVE CONTROLS BEFORE THE SNAP - Analog Pad - send reciever in motion L/R - Zoom out to view player buttons, fatigue levels, and defensive set. A - Hurries players to the line of scrimmage and snaps the ball Y - Opens up the Audible Menu. Select optional play via it's corresponding button. X - Lower crowd noise. B - Fake snap signal (use to lure defense offsides). RUNNING THE BALL - A - Speed burst, hold for power move and then press other button for special. L/R - Stiff arm left or right L+R - Dance or "juke" past the defender X - Dive Y - Hurdle B - Spin D-Pad - Lateral the ball behind you QUARTERBACK - X/Y/B/A/L - throw the ball to corresponding receiver D-Pad - throw the ball away R+L - Juke move R+B - Spin move R+A - Speed burst, hold for power move R+Y - Hurdle R+X - Slide or dive. CATCHING A PASS B - Select receiver nearest ball X - Diving catch Y - Jump to catch OFFENSIVE TIPS: NO HUDDLE OFFENSE- tap the Y button repeatedly to hurry the guys back to the line and run the same play again. Great for the infamous two minute drill when time is running out and you're down a couple points. PLAY CALLING ASSIST- Press the A button twice while in the play calling screen to let the CPU select a play for you. BLUFF MODE- When playing against someone sitting next to you press and hold the A button down to select your play. Then, with the A button still depressed, flip through the playbook to throw him off guard. MAXIMUM PASSING- If turned on, this form of passing will allow you to actually aim your throw. Use the analog stick to lead your receiver, underthrow him, or toss it up for grabs. You can also adjust the way in which the ball is thrown by the way in which you press the button. Tap it for a lob, press and release to throw normal passes, and hold it down for a bullet pass. OK, the rest of the game of offense is up to you. But think sneaky and do the opposite of what is expected for the situation. For example, come out on first down and throw the ball deep. Everyone looks for the run on first down, so exploit the depleted secondary. Second down is typically a passing situation so pitch the ball outside and let your running back make a big gain. These are the types of things that will help you to win games. And don't forget to utilize the clock! You have 40 seconds in between plays, more than enough time to usually call a play and hurry back to the line. But, if you take your time selecting your play you will chew up more of the clock and tire their defense even more. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- DEFENSE The goal of the defensive unit is simple--stop the offense from scoring. Surprisingly, the way in which this is carried out can be more complex than some offenses. With a multitude of formations, defensive players will criss-cross or "stunt", they will blitz, play bump and run coverage, zone coverage, or straight up man-to-man. But, it all boils down to stopping the offense. The defense wants to get the opposing team's offense off the field as quickly as possible. To do it, it must fight to not allow any first downs. This should be in your mind when playing the game. Always keep an eye on that yellow indicator, and do not let the opponent cross it. If you can keep him from doing it, you will likely win the game. DEFENSIVE CONTROLS: BEFORE THE SNAP- B or D-pad - select a player to control Analog - reposition defender L/R - Zoom out to view players when D-back is selected L/R - Shift lineman left or right when lineman is seleted A - Hurry players into position X - Pump up the crowd Y - Audible, press A/B/X button to change play AFTER THE SNAP- B - Gain control of player nearest ball A - Speed burst, hold for special move X - Dive tackle Y - Jump to block or intercept pass L/R - Lineman special move when engaged in a block D-Pad - Select another player to control DEFENCIVE TIPS: There are several good things to keep in mind when playing defense. First and foremost is to know what the play you called is designed to do. It's easy to get caught up in trying to sack the quarterback. But, if you grab hold of the cornerback and inch him towards the line for a blitz when he was supposed to be playing man coverage, you're going to get burned. Even when you understand the play, it is easy to bring a defender out of his zone. Be careful! Don't always go for the interception! One of the biggest differences between college football on Saturday and the NFL on Sunday is the level of play by the cornerbacks. By going for an interception, a cornerback essentially takes away any chance he has of tackling the receiver. If it's gonna be close, and no other defenders are nearby, don't risk it. Another thing to keep in mind is to go against the norm from time to time. Blitz when the offense is least expecting it. Sometimes catching them off guard is the only way you can. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- SPECIAL TEAMS Special teams is the name given to the units that take the field in kicking situations. Whether it's your team that's doing the kicking or the receiving, these are the guys that are out there. When on offense and fourth down rolls around, most of the time you will be either punting or attempting a field goal. For a good roundabout rule, if you're beyond the 35 yard line, should punt it. If you're on defense and the other team is about to punt the ball (or go for a field goal), you should select one of the "return" plays. Essentially, telling the blockers whether you plan to run left, right, or up the middle. Or, if you got the oppponent deep in his own territory, go for the block. Just don't hit the kicker! Roughing the kicker is like passing a stopped school bus--extremely frowned upon. KICKING: Analog - Aim the ball and set the trajectory (don't forget to account for the wind) A - press once to start the play, a second time to stop the power meter. RECEIVEING KICKOFFS AND PUNTS: L/R - Zoom out to view players Y - to signal fair catch before catching the ball, or to down the ball in the endzone after catching the ball D-Pad - Lateral the ball Analog - Control the runner Special Teams is almost like a mini game, for returning kickoffs and punts for a score is one of the most eletric moments in sports. Have fun with it, practice it, and love it! -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- GAME OPTIONS The Options screen, selected from the game's main menu, is where you go when you want to do some tweeking. It can also be reached by pressing the Start button during a game, where it can double as a pause screen as well. NFL 2K1 allows you to have an incredible amount of control over the settings in the game. Whether you're looking to put the kibosh on Mother Nature or stuff those yellow hankies up the ref's, err, nevermind. I think you get the idea. WEATHER As long as you're not playing in a dome, or in the middle of a Season or Playoff run, you can serve up any weather condition you want. Time of day, temperature, precipitation, wind speed, and fog can be set to your liking. Use the A and X buttons to increase and decrease the values for each option, respectively. Want it to snow? Simply crank up the precipitation and lower the temperature. PRESENTATION The Presentation screen is where to go when you're looking to dial into whatever level of realism you're in the mood for. Toggle the settings on and off with the A button and slide the bars up and down with the A and X buttons, respectively. One of the cooler features of this screen is the preset audio presentations. Harmonic details such as PA volume, player chatter, and the roar of the crowd can be tuned in for a perfect balance from the presets "TV Broadcast", "In Stands", "On Field", as well as the default settings. PENALTIES This is where NFL 2K1 really shines. No fewer than twenty one fouls are recognized in the game. If the sheer number of recognizable fouls doesn't impress you, what would you say if I told you half of them have eleven-stop sensitivity controls. Amazing! So what to do, you might ask? Turn it all on, and leave the default settings alone with the exception of clipping, which I would drop a notch or two. Realism is great, but unless you like having the majority of your punt, kickoff, and interception returns getting called back for clipping, I'd lower it. GAME OPTIONS The Game Options menu can be accessed at nearly any point during play or by the main Options screen. These settings, as you probably have guessed, dictate the conditions of your game. These settings can be adjusted any way you like, but I would recommend a "set and forget" approach to this screen. If you want consistency in your play, scoring, and statistics, you will be better served in not changing these options too often. That having been said, here's the rundown on what these options mean: Quarter Length – choose 1 to 15 minute quarters. When you factor in replays, stoppage of the clock, stats reports, etc, the games last a lot longer than you may expect. A good rule of thumb is to multiply the number of minutes in a period by 10 to get the total time to play a game (i.e. a game with 4 minute quarters will take about 40 minutes to play). Skill Level – Choose between Rookie, Pro, and All-Pro. Play a few games in Rookie mode and then, when you have the hang of it, kick it up to Pro. The quality of defense played in the All-Pro setting is really . . . All-Pro. Watch out, they're tough! Play Calling – "By Formation" will sort the plays in your playbook by their technical formation titles (i.e. 4-3 Blitz), whereas "By Type" will sort them by type of play (i.e. inside run). Beginners should choose stick to "By Type" while learning the ropes. VMU Calling – Tired of your friends always knowing what you're gonna do before you do it? Turn this handy feature on and call the game in privacy. Game Speed – Choose between slow, normal, or fast. Fatigue, Line Moves, Injuries – Turn them on or off to your liking. Coach Mode – Coach mode lets you select the plays without actually playing the game. This is a great option for Fantasy and Franchise mode when you want to witness your team's level of play. Performance EQ – No more listening to your friends whine about the teams not being fair. Performance EQ makes all of the teams virtually identical (from an abilities standpoint) thereby placing the outcome of the game entirely in your hands. CONTROLLER Scroll through multiple controller configurations and pick the one that best suits you. Warning, many of the non-default settings will utilize the D-Pad for normal movement of your player, thereby eliminating your ability to lateral the ball. TEAMS AFC EAST Buffalo Bills The Buffalo Bills are a well-balanced team with a lot of heart. Although the team lacks true superstars (they traded them all last off-season), Rob Johnson, Eric Moulds, and Antowain Smith will work hard to make the shotgun-laden offense work well. The Bills rely a lot on sending receivers in motion and are, at times, a hard team to defend against. As for the defensive unit, they are handling the post-Bruce Smith years in stride. Look for defensive end Phil Hansen to control when playing D. One other aspect to consider when playing as the Bills, is the weather. You're going to have to rely on the running game, almost exclusively, when the snow comes. And it does come! Bills Left Formation: Motion PA Throwback This formation is so well attuned to the power running game, that it would be a crime not to occasionally run play-action from it. Send the single receiver, Eric Moulds, in motion. Once the ball is snapped, fake the hand off to Smith and hit Moulds as he releases from the DE. If the pass protection is holding up, and the safeties bite hard on the backs, you may be able to open it up with Moulds down the sideline. Left Double Gun Formation: Motion Draw By lining up in a shotgun formation with three receivers split wide, defenses will more than likely drop into zone coverage, banking on the halfback only being in on a blocking assignment. Send the receiver in motion and snap the ball. As all three wideouts and the tight end, Reimersma, get 10 to 15 yards out, hand it off to Antowain Smith on the draw. Key Players: Eric Moulds (WR) Phil Hansen (DE) Indianapolis Colts The Indianapolis Colts are a solid team composed of youthful, talented, players. The core of the team, composed of Peyton, James, and Harrison, are only going to get better as they become even more familiar with one another. Their offense is one of big play potential both out of the backfield and through the air. If, that is, the offensive line can keep Manning on his feet. Unfortunately, the powerful offense isn't always enough to win. The Colts' D is known to blow big leads and get the team stuck in a shootout, when they should otherwise be up by a couple scores. The Colts are a fun team to play with, provided the defense doesn't get you too frustrated. Right Double Gun Slot Formation: Pony Stop The plays in this formation are the one's most commonly used in the Colts' long yardage situations. Call a couple other plays from this formation during the two- minute drill and then go to the Pony Stop to catch the defense off guard. Two wide outs will slant from left to right, often drawing portions of the zone defense away from Harrison on the right. Harrison, the first read, is going to run a ten yard hitch. Zip the ball to him just before he turns around. If well-timed, Wilkins and Pathon will be there to block downfield. If having four receivers bunched up is not for you, dump it off to James on the left. Ace Formation: Motion Cutback One of the beautiful things about Edgerrin James is his ability to stop on a dime and redirect the play. The Motion Cutback calls for him to do exactly this. The play begins with the right-side wide receiver motioning to the left. As the ball is snapped and pitched to James, he starts left, selling the sweep around the left corner. Once the defense commits, James cuts it back around the tight-end on the right. A great play for goal line situations. Key Players: Peyton Manning (QB) Chad Bratzke (DE) Miami Dolphins It's the dawn of a new era in Miami—the post-Marino years. Well, besides from that, not much has changed. The defense is still the stronger half of the team, striking fear in many of their AFC East opponents. While guys like Sam Madison and Brock Marion blanket the secondary, hard hitting Zach Thomas and company stuff the running game. Things aren't as sunny on offense, however. Although the receiving core is on par with the rest of the league and Lamar Smith is coming into his own as a running back, the inexperience at the QB position will ultimately hurt this team. Empty Gun Formation: Motion X In This empty backfield play utilizes four wide receivers and a tight end. The motion will be slight, and consist entirely of a shift from the outside to the inside for the strong side wide receiver. By using five receivers on this play, the lucky QB will always have someone to throw to. Often, this will be the hot read O.J. McDuffie cutting across the field underneath the coverage. The Motion X In, and other plays from the Empty Gun Formation, are best used for third and long situations. Double Right Slot Formation: Strong Trap This play commits everyone to blocking for the lone back. The play will begin to the left, where the two wide receivers staying put should help to sell this idea. Then, behind the pulling left tackle, the ball carrying Smith will break it back to the right. Follow the tackle through the hole between the right-side tight-end and wide receiver. This play is best suited for first and ten situations, where grinding out a few yards is desired. Key Players: Olindo Mare (K) Sam Madison (DB) New York Jets The Jets look to be back to their 1998-99 form. Testaverde is healthy, Martin is running great, and the defense is tight. With the Jets, you can expect to compliment the sound running of Curtis Martin with the accurate passing of Testaverde. A little short on receivers however, expect Chrebet to gang-covered on most passing situations. The veteran defense of the Jets will always provide you with an edge over even the toughest opponents. And the AFC East isn't short on tough opponents. Bunch Formation: Stealth Corner This formation puts three of the four wide receivers in a "bunch" on the left side of the line. What makes this play work well is that the bunched receivers all break off at different depths down the field, keeping the defense pre-occupied with this half of the field. To the right, Curtis Martin breaks to the sidelines where he could feasibly get a dump off in the flats. While all of these other routes are being run Wayne Chrebet is streaking down the right-side. Although it's unlikely that Chrebet is going to sneak by unnoticed, this play will work well to free him of the double-coverage he has come to expect since Keyshawn was sent south. And, if Chrebet still gets double-teamed, Martin should be a wide-open alternative in the shallows. Bunch Formation: Toss Like the above-mentioned play, three of the four receivers are bunched to the left. Upon the snap, the left guard will pull out and fill the gap between the inside wide receiver and the tackle. Now, with a line of blockers stretched four to the left, Martin will be able to take the Toss way around the end and off down the sideline. This play will work well for picking up a few extra yards and also for getting out of bounds and stopping the clock. Key Players: Curtis Martin (RB) Aaron Glenn (DB) New England Patriots The 2000-01 season does not look to be a promising one for the Patriots. The offense is still relying on the heart of Drew Bledsoe's to lift them to victory. While there is no questioning Bledsoe's desire to win, it's his ability that bears scrutiny. Victim of having no running game and a Swiss cheese O-line, there is little he can do but throw to often double-covered Terry Glenn. The Pats look a little better on defense, but this is primarily due to the outstanding coverage given to them by Lawyer Milloy. This can't overshadow the fact that they are still weak against the run and have little to no pass rush. Bunch Gun Formation: Under The Bunch Gun Formation usually rears it's ugly head in deep yardage passing situations. However, by running the Under play as designed, you can effectively throw short and rely on the downfield blocking by the other receivers to help out your "yards after catch" stat. The Under utilizes three wide receivers: two of them bunched with the tight-end on the left, and Terry Glenn isolated on the right. Glenn, the inside wide receiver on the left, and the tight-end will be headed deep, with Glenn curling back inside. With the defense headed deep Brown, the outside wide receiver on the left, cuts across the middle 5 yards out. Hit him quick and let his feet due the rest. What really makes this play work well is that of all the receivers, Brown is the one least likely to stay shallow. I Queens Formation: Reverse Albeit, a hard play to turn, this is an effective play for the Pats. The play uses the two backs in a traditional I with three wide receivers, two of them split to the left. Carter, the halfback, is going to get the handoff and head right. Just as the fullback throws the would-be lead block, Terry Glenn will come around for the reverse. Hand the ball off to Glenn and then use him to run around the line to the left. *The key to this play is working the Dreamcast controller effectively. I suggest you put your right thumb on the D-Pad immediately following the snap. Let your left thumb steer Carter with the analog stick and use your right thumb to tap to the right on the D-Pad as Glenn draws alongside him. Practice this play before using it in a game and you should be able to work up to the transition going as smooth as can be. Key Players: Drew Bledsoe (QB) Lawyer Milloy (DB) AFC CENTRAL Cincinnati Bengals You have your work cut out for you here. This team lacks leadership, a passing game, a running game, a defense, special teams, etc. You're best bet for winning with the Bengals "as is" is to continuously rely on Corey Dillon and Peter Warrick. Pound it out on the ground with Dillon until the safeties start to inch forward. Then catch them off guard with the deep ball to Warrick. Of course, you're best bet for winning with this team is to play Franchise mode and start from scratch with your very own draft. Trey Gun Formation: Hail Mary Just about every team has this play in their arsenal, so why talk about it with the Bengals you ask? That's easy—there isn't a single team in the league that you'll be having to pray with more often than the Bengals. Ok, joking aside, this play sees 4 receivers lined up on the right (one of them being halfback Corey Dillon) and Peter Warrick split to the left. Although Yeast is the "go-to" guy in the playbook, you're better off tossing it up to the crossing Dugans or the nearby Warrick. I Tight Formation: Power Dive This "go for it" play is great for those situations when the endzone is so close you can smell it. Although the single wide receiver, two tight end set doesn't do much to hide the intentions of this play, everyone knows it's all up to Dillon anyway. Grab the ball and leap over the pile for pay dirt. Key Players: Corey Dillon (RB) Takeo Spikes (LB) Cleveland Browns The Browns have come a long way from their rebirth of a couple years ago. Young QB Tim Couch is progressing nicely and is capable of getting the ball in the hands of receivers Johnson and Dawson. Unfortunately, the Browns have suffered from lack of a reliable running game since their resurrection. As for their defense, you're going to need to keep on top of them. Control Ellsworth in passing situations and hope they don't run on you. I Queens Formation: Verticals The play starts with taking the I Formation and bringing in another wide receiver in place of the tight end. Looking at this formation, there's no way to guess whether the Browns are going to run or pass. Excellent! By bringing the two backs out of the backfield and having them run short yardage routes, the safeties and linebackers have no choice but to take notice. Finally, by having Chiaverini break to the middle of the field at the end of his route, yet another defender will be drawn away from the sideline-streaking Dawson. Hit him in stride for an easy 40 yard gain. Jumbo I Formation: Power Lead Going for it on fourth and inches? This is the play you want. By bringing in a third tight end on blocking duty, you're not going to fool anyone here, but that's ok. By pulling the right guard out of position and using him as the lead blocker between the opposite side tackle and guard, you're bound to move some bodies. Follow Lindsay's and Edwards' wake with the ball carrying Ericct Rhett for the short distance you need. Key Players: Tim Couch (QB) Percy Ellsworth (DB) Jacksonville Jaguars The Jaguars are a solid Super Bowl contender. They have one of the more potent offenses in the league in Brunell, Taylor, Smith, and McCardell. And keeping them healthy is All-Pro tackle Tony Boselli. On the defensive side of the ball, there is quality abound. The DE's and linebackers are great at getting to the QB, and the defensive backs seldom get burned. All in all, the Jaguars are a team you can win with. Trey Gun Formation: Stretch This third-down play puts Brunell out of harm's way and gives time for the play to develop. Expecting double-coverage to be on McCardell and Smith, this play is designed to go to the wide receiver Whitted. Coming from the outside, Whitted will slant to the inside and follow directly behind the tight-end, who will curl to the center of the field about 10 yards out. As soon as the tight-end makes his break, hit the trailing Whitted down the center for the first down. Weak I Doubles Formation: Sweep This conservative running play is best used on first down and when you're trying to run some time off the clock. The fullback and the receivers are going to spend the play needlessly blocking the left side of the line. Meanwhile, Taylor is going to get the ball going right around the tight-end. Blocking for him will be done by the pulling center and left guard. Hit the hole between these two blocks to reel off a 3 to 5 yard gain. Key Players: Fred Taylor (RB) Tony Brackens (DE) Baltimore Ravens The Baltimore Ravens look to shake things up in the AFC Central this season. Fueled by their high-powered defense, the team should be able to keep even the best opponents under control with their hard-knocks linebackers and secondary. The question that remains with the Ravens however, is whether or not their offense can score enough to bring them home the "W". Tony Banks (QB) has yet to prove he can carry the load of the offense which lacks not only a running game, but a deep threat as well. Expect a lot of close, low scoring games. Ravens I Formation: Motion Play Action Out and Go This play pulls out all the stops in hopes of creating a one-on-one situation down field for Ismail. The deception begins with Taylor going in motion from right to left. At the snap, the QB will fake the handoff to Lewis, who will go into a short out pattern opposite the fullback who is doing the same. Sharpe and Taylor will both break off deep routes towards the center of the field. This whirlwind of motion does not include the hot-read, Ismail. Ismail will break on an out pattern about 10 yards out and then immediately break his new direction off and continue down the field. Hang it out in front of him as he turns back downfield for the big completion. *Be sure to watch the defense when calling this play. If it looks like they're bringing the blitz, you better audible at the line. This play leaves no additional blockers in to protect the QB. Your big play can become an 8 yard loss if you're not careful. Double Right Slot Formation: Motion Draw The Motion Draw uses a three wide-receiver, one back set. Here, the slot receiver on the left will go in motion, bringing him even closer to the line. Upon the snap, the entire line will drop back into pass coverage, helping sell the idea of a pass. After a moment's pause, Lewis will get the ball and head through the hole on the right side of the line. Not a bad play to use on first down. Key Players: Shannon Sharpe (TE) Ray Lewis (LB) Pittsburgh Steelers The Steelers seem to play as uninspired as they look. Questionable quarterbacks, unreliable wide receivers, and an inconsistent ground game, the Steelers are little threat to even the most average of defenses. As for their own defense, the Steelers are just plain bad. Cherish the games you play against the Bengals, they may be your only wins. Quad Gun Formation: Slot Slant This play has the both right-side receivers and the outside left receiver break to the outside. This frees up the center of the field for the slanting Blackwell coming out of the slot. Despite taking the ball in the shotgun formation, the QB will drop back even further to get behind the halfback. What this means is that you're going to have to throw the ball hard and early to hit Blackwell in stride. Jumbo I Formation: Stout Lead It's time to take the Bus for a spin. This goal line offense stacks the line with seven players and an additional tight-end on the left. In this direct-hit running attack, Bettis will get the ball and blast through the hole between the tackle and tight-end on the right side. Clearing the lane for this "oversized vehicle" is the reliable Witman. Key Players: Dermontti Dawson (C) Levon Kirkland (LB) Tennessee Titans The Titans look to be as unstoppable as they were last year. Their offense features the running of All-Pro Eddie George, the passing and running of Steve McNair, and the hands of Yancey Thigpen and Carl Pickens. The defense, however, is a little weaker than the offense. Jevon Kearse is an excellent pass rusher off the end and the DB's do a good job of covering the pass. Unfortunately, opponents can often exploit the Titans' weakness—their defensive interior Triple Near Formation: Play Action Slot Boot Cross When everything appears to be going to the right, the Titans go left. Despite being a tad difficult to pull off, this play is a great one to go to on second down. The two tight-ends will slant across the middle of the field, following the QB who rolls out to the right after faking the handoff. The two wide receivers, Pickens and Thigpen, will be headed deep. It's going to require throwing clear across the field, but if you can hit Thigpen as he breaks to the middle of the field, you will not only have a big completion on your hands, but a stunned defense. Quad Gun Formation: Air QB Draw Although the threat of the QB sneak is inherent when you play the Titans, few would expect to see a planned QB run out of the Quad Gun Formation. This third and long play calls for all four wide-outs to stick their respective cover guys long enough for the play to evolve. Just as the linemen drop into pass protection McNair will briefly hesitate and tuck it and head through the hole right of the center. Eddie George will run around the outside of the line and be there for downfield blocking on the right. Key Players: Eddie George (RB) Jevon Kearse (DE) AFC WEST Denver Broncos The Denver Broncos are only a QB removed from back-to-back Super Bowl victories and are still a very adept team. Quality receivers like Ed McCaffrey and Rod Smith keep the threat of the passing attack alive, while Terrell Davis pounds it out on the ground. This team isn't only about offense though. With a solid core of linebackers, led by Mobley and Romanowski, this is one of the harder hitting groups in the NFL. Finally, Jason Elam, the forever-reliable long-range place kicker, may make the difference in more than a few of your games. Bunch Formation: WR Screen Like the other plays in this formation, this one puts two wide receivers on the left, a step off the line of scrimmage, and straddling the tight end. Rod Smith will loop back underneath the blocking of McCaffrey and Chamberlain and get the ball on the screen. With the speed of Terrell Davis out of the backfield, not to mention the O-linemen and receivers, Smith should have plenty of downfield blocking. Try using this play when it's second and short—a time most people will expect you to air it out. Bunch Formation: Motion Toss Like the WR Screen discussed above, this play aims to catch the defense off guard by running the ball out of an obvious passing-intensive formation. Smith will come from the left to the right in motion. Snap the ball just as he gets past the QB. The right guard will pull off the line and add to the downfield blocking on the right side. Smith, Reed, and Neil should be all the blocking needed for Terrell Davis to peel off moderate to large gains with this play. Key Players: Terrell Davis (RB) John Mobley (LB) San Diego Chargers When you look up the word "unbalanced" in the dictionary you see a picture of the Chargers. As good on defense as any other team in the league (at least on paper), the Chargers have solid leadership in Junior Seau and a reliably effective core of guys who know how to play well. The problem with the Chargers is that they have no offense. And this isn't a knock against Ryan Leaf alone, the Chargers are equally deprived of standout receivers and backs. It may even be said that the best ball handler on the team is the punter—a guy you definitely don't want getting too many touches. Defense might win championships, but it's the offense that gives them that chance. Don't expect the Chargers' D to get that chance. Chargers Right: Stop and Go Fly The Chargers Right Formation uses two tight-ends lined up both on the right side of the ball. In this play the outside tight-end will take off up the field hard, stop and turn around, and then take off even deeper. The key to this play working is that the defenders find it difficult to stay stride for stride with the receiver once he starts going deep. If, for whatever reason, neither tight-end gets open, you can always give it to the halfback on the screen, or the wide receiver waiting in the flats. Chargers I: Motion Counter Toss In this deceptive running play, everything goes to the right except the ball carrier. The play will start with Graham coming in motion from left to right, drawing the OLB away from the play. Once the ball is snapped, the fullback will hit the hole left of the center, while the carrier heads left around the corner. One way you can mix it up with this play is to snap the ball just as Graham starts motioning to the right. By doing so, you will give our opponent the impression that you're running a reverse. Key Players Darren Bennett (P) Junior Seau (LB) Kansas City Chiefs One of the most consistent teams over the past decade, the Chiefs have just enough talent on both sides of the ball to worry any opponent they face. Elvis Grbac brings veteran leadership to an offense effective at moving the ball down the field with both long and short passing. The defense is equally adept at doing their job. Solid linebackers such as Donnie Edwards and Marvcus Patton excel at keeping the short stuff under control while James Hasty takes away the opponent's deep threat. If there was one thing that appears to be lacking from the Chiefs, however, it is a solid ground game. Despite lacking a star in the backfield, this is a team you can go far with. Chiefs Right Formation: Motion Option Outside of the NCAA you don't see too much use of the option play; the option referring to the choice the QB has of pitching the ball to the running back, running it himself, or throwing it. The Chiefs, however, use a form of it rather effectively out of their Chiefs Right Formation. This play puts the two outside receivers in deep curling routes, effectively setting up the underneath pass. All-Pro tight-end Tony Gonzalez comes in motion from right to left, where he will immediately cross with Alexander, the third wide receiver. Gonzalez will run an 8 yard curl and is the go-to guy on the play. However, if the coverage is too tight to risk the pass, you can always option to the halfback on the swing pass. Weak I Doubles: KC Blast This is one of the Chiefs' staples for attacking the line of scrimmage and establishing dominance at the point of attack. Two wide receivers to the left will serve as little more than window dressing on this play. Here, the fullback Richardson will take the ball straight up the gut between the center and right guard. If you catch the defense blitzing the corners this play could result in big gains. Otherwise, be happy for the 3 yards it's intended to get you. Key Players: Tony Gonzalez (TE) Marvcus Patton (LB) Oakland Raiders Playing with the Raiders is about playing with attitude,,, and winning. The Raiders have a deadly scoring attack with Rich Gannon at the helm. The Raiders make it easy for running back Tyrone Wheatley by having the downfield threat of Tim Brown, James Jett, and Rickey Dudley, the tight-end, always keeping the secondary on their heels. The Raiders D is home to marquis DB Charles Woodson, and also features a well- above-average set of lineman. Split Formation: Havoc This play will work well for you on first and second downs. Brown and Jett are your split wideouts, Dudley is in on the left as an eligible receiver, and the backs are set up in a wishbone. While eyes will presumably be on Brown going deep, Dudley and Jett run mirror-image curls 10 yards out. Clearing out the passing lane between Gannon and Dudley is the fullback, Ritchie, who runs an out pattern in front of the tight-end. Fire the ball into Dudley's numbers just as Ritchie makes his cut. Raiders I Formation: Assassin Pitch Nothing goes better with the rough and tumble image of the Raiders, than the I Formation. In this particular play, the left guard will pull off the line and lead the charge around the left side tight-end. Close behind will be Ritchie leading the way for Wheatley who gets the ball on the pitch. Key Players: Tim Brown (WR) Charles Woodson (DB) Seattle Seahawks The departure of Joey Galloway and the aging of Ricky Watters is leaving this team absolutely devoid of scoring potential. Inexperience at the QB position and a sub- par receiving crew let defenses gang up on the line of scrimmage to stop Watters. The defense of the Seahawks is slightly better than the offense, but not by much. Like many teams around the league, they have a strong secondary but a weak first line of defense. The Seahawks better hope those hospitable Huskies don't challenge them to a scrimmage, it could be embarrassing. Power I Formation: Fade This particular play is extremely useful in goal line situations. The Power I uses a standard I and then adds a second tight-end to the backfield. The QB will drop back between the backs and this extra tight-end for an absolute shield of protection. Of course the big push from the defense will be at the line, leaving Mayes open on the left side. The key to this play is releasing the ball quickly with a soft touch. Lob it up to the far corner of the endzone where only your man can catch it. I Queens Formation: Talon Zone Cutback This play does a good idea of hiding its intentions. The three wide receivers give the appearance of a passing play, but that's not it at all. Both the fullback and Watters, the ball carrier, will start off to the right. Watters will cut it back to the left just before getting outside the tacklebox. Guide the running back through the hole created between the left tackle and guard. This play is not likely to result in huge gains, but will keep the defense honest when they see those three wide receivers! Key Players: Ricky Watters (RB) Shawn Springs (DB) NFC EAST Arizona Cardinals The Arizona Cardinals are a lot like their divisional foe New York Giants of the past couple years. A solid defense with several big-name stars such as Simeon Rice and Aeneas Williams, but an offense that can't even tell you where the red zone is on the field, let alone score from it. Until Jake Plummer and company get their act together on offense, these desert dwellers are going to suffer a serious drought in the "win" column. Weak I Formation: FB Decoy Screen At first glance, this is a pretty straightforward play—the fullback cuts along the line of scrimmage to the outside, drawing the right side corner or outside line backer out of position. This, in turn allows the short dump-off to go to the halfback who, if everything goes well, has been unaccounted for by the defense. What makes this pay work so well however, is the complex movement on the line. The right- side tight end will take off on a deep route, thus leaving an imbalance on the right side. To balance this out, and serve a as a lead blocker for the ball carrier, the left guard will pull out and take the tight-end's place on the right side of the ball. Split Gun Formation: Deep Cross If the ground game isn't working for you and you need to get down the field quickly, turn to the Split Gun Formation. This particular play will leave the fullback in position to guard the blind-side of the QB while the receivers and halfback take off on passing routes. The key ingredient of this play is that the two outside receivers will cross, likely creating confusion in the secondary. Let the play develop and hit Jenkins 20 yards out. Key Players: Jake Plummer (QB) Aeneas Williams (DB) Dallas Cowboys The Cowboys are in a bit of a decline. Ok, that's putting it too mildly—they're in a tailspin. In theory, Aikman, Smith, and Galloway should be able to score at will. Unfortunately, the woeful offensive line seldom gives Aikman the protection he needs, nor Smith the holes he requires. And that is the good news. The bad news is on defense. Without Mr. Primetime taking care of half the field, the frailties of the rest of the defense are exaggerated. They have trouble stopping the run and can get lit up quite easily by a veteran passing attack. Double Left Slot Formation: Blast Off You guessed it, we're going deep with Ismail! Galloway and Ismail are the split wide- outs with McKnight in the slot near Galloway on the left. LaFleur and McKnight will close off their routes near one another in between the hatch marks, likely creating some confusion deep in the secondary. Meanwhile, the super fast Ismail will be streaking down the sideline on the right. Lead him with the ball and say hello endzone. Of course, if Ismail is covered you can always go to Galloway deep down the left sideline. Jumbo I Formation: Cowboy Pitch This unique setup uses two fullbacks in addition to the essential Emmitt Smith. By lining up the extra fullback off the line on the left in addition to pulling the left guard and running him around the corner too, Smith will have way more blocking than he ever needs. In fact, one thing to be careful with when running the Cowboy Pitch is to not get too fancy as you slip through the HOV-lane sized hole that will open between the tight-end and fullbacks. Key Players: Emmit Smith (RB) Dexter Coakley (LB) Philadelphia Eagles This year's Eagles are starting to make a name for themselves. The defensive side of the ball possesses a suffocating secondary led by Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent, and an assuredly slouch-less D-line. The offense is growing into its own with youthful QB Donovan McNabb and slippery running back Duce Staley. Together, with an underrated receiving crew, the offensive skills' men can score big when they get things firing on all cylinders. Split Queens Formation: Weak Pitch While most plays in this formation result in passing plays, the Weak Pitch shakes it up a bit. With the backs set up in a wishbone formation, they both break to the right at the snap. Staley will run his ass off, making sure to block the defensive end lined up inside the lone wide receiver. Assuming Staley sticks his block, Pritchett should have no trouble bringing the ball around the corner for a moderate gain on the pitch. Doubles Formation: Exchange At first glance this play looks like a smorgasbord of pass routes. Not to worry, it's really quite simple. To start with, the play has four wide receivers split evenly on both sides of the ball. The lone back, Staley, will come out of the backfield and start heading down field. Just as he breaks down the field, the right- side wide receivers will cut to the inside and outside, thus giving the secondary plenty of reason to stay home. Meanwhile, wide-outs Johnson and Brown head down field and cross about 15 yards deep. Chances are, even if you overthrow Johnson, the chaos created by the last-minute crossing route may draw a pass interference call. Either way, it will likely be first and ten Eagles! Key Players: Duce Staley (RB) Bobby Taylor (DB) New York Giants The G-men of the Meadowlands are a new-look team, and I'm not just referring to their old school uniforms. For the first time in several years, they have an offense that can move the ball both through the air and on the ground. While QB Kerry Collins is showing a unique ability to get the ball to Amani Toomer, it is the power running of Ron Dayne that minimizes the pressure past Giants' QB's have felt. As for the defense, with names like Strahan, Sehorn, and Armstead, it's safe to say they are a solid bunch. Look for the Giants to be a close runner-up in the NFC East and sneak into the playoffs as a Wild Card. Ace Formation: Coffin Corner This play is most often used on big yardage situations, like on second and 15. Both tight-ends and the the two wide receivers will head out on varying routes. The tight- ends will cross about 5 yards out, with the left side TE cutting across the middle underneath the coverage. He is your safety valve if the wide-outs are covered. Nevertheless, the play is designed to go deep and Hilliard is the hot-read down the right side. Air it out as soon as he begins his angle to the sideline. Run this play properly and you'll be high-fiving on Hoffa's grave. Double I Tight Formation: Goliath Lead Definitely a short-yardage power play, this running play features the powerful Ron Dayne straight up the gut of the defense. Not without some help, mind you. The right- side tackle will pull out of position and be the first to hit the whole between the center and left guard. The fullback, Comella, will lead Dayne through the hole for the yard or two they need. Key Players: Amani Toomer (WR) Jessie Armstead (LB) Washington Redskins Great things are expected of this year's 'Skins. On paper they are arguably one of the best teams ever assembled… but that is on paper. On offense, the Redskins let the fireworks explode with Brad Johnson connecting deep with Michael Westbrook and Albert Connell. To balance the aerial assault there is the always consistent north- south running of Stephen Davis. The Redskins defensive side of the ball is stacked with future Hall of Fame inductees. Bruce Smith, Darrel Green, and Deion Sanders, to name a few. When playing NFL 2K1 as the Redskins you can expect to win on "Any Given Sunday". Author's Note: Go Redskins!!!!!! Split Gun Formation: Z Dig This third down play is great for catching the defense in mismatches. For starters Connell and Fryar are going to run straight, deep, vertical routes. Sure to lure the safeties away from the play. Westbrook, lined up outside on the left will start his route by slanting towards Fryar, where he will then follow him sown the field for 10 yards. Westbrook will break to the center of the field about 15 yards deep, so release the ball right before he makes the cut. What makes this play great, however, is that Centers is in the flat on the left. If, for whatever reason, you can't get the ball deep simply dump it off to Centers. NFC East Cardinals -- Cowboys -- Eagles -- Giants -- Redskins -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Arizona Cardinals The Arizona Cardinals are a lot like their divisional foe New York Giants of the past couple years. A solid defense with several big-name stars such as Simeon Rice and Aeneas Williams, but an offense that can't even tell you where the red zone is on the field, let alone score from it. Until Jake Plummer and company get their act together on offense, these desert dwellers are going to suffer a serious drought in the "win" column. Weak I Formation: FB Decoy Screen At first glance, this is a pretty straightforward play—the fullback cuts along the line of scrimmage to the outside, drawing the right side corner or outside line backer out of position. This, in turn allows the short dump-off to go to the halfback who, if everything goes well, has been unaccounted for by the defense. What makes this pay work so well however, is the complex movement on the line. The right- side tight end will take off on a deep route, thus leaving an imbalance on the right side. To balance this out, and serve a as a lead blocker for the ball carrier, the left guard will pull out and take the tight-end's place on the right side of the ball. FB Decoy Screen Deep Cross Split Gun Formation: Deep Cross If the ground game isn't working for you and you need to get down the field quickly, turn to the Split Gun Formation. This particular play will leave the fullback in position to guard the blind-side of the QB while the receivers and halfback take off on passing routes. The key ingredient of this play is that the two outside receivers will cross, likely creating confusion in the secondary. Let the play develop and hit Jenkins 20 yards out. Key Players Jake Plummer (QB) Aeneas Williams (DB) Dallas Cowboys The Cowboys are in a bit of a decline. Ok, that's putting it too mildly—they're in a tailspin. In theory, Aikman, Smith, and Galloway should be able to score at will. Unfortunately, the woeful offensive line seldom gives Aikman the protection he needs, nor Smith the holes he requires. And that is the good news. The bad news is on defense. Without Mr. Primetime taking care of half the field, the frailties of the rest of the defense are exaggerated. They have trouble stopping the run and can get lit up quite easily by a veteran passing attack. Double Left Slot Formation: Blast Off You guessed it, we're going deep with Ismail! Galloway and Ismail are the split wide- outs with McKnight in the slot near Galloway on the left. LaFleur and McKnight will close off their routes near one another in between the hatch marks, likely creating some confusion deep in the secondary. Meanwhile, the super fast Ismail will be streaking down the sideline on the right. Lead him with the ball and say hello endzone. Of course, if Ismail is covered you can always go to Galloway deep down the left sideline. Blast Off Cowboy Pitch Jumbo I Formation: Cowboy Pitch This unique setup uses two fullbacks in addition to the essential Emmitt Smith. By lining up the extra fullback off the line on the left in addition to pulling the left guard and running him around the corner too, Smith will have way more blocking than he ever needs. In fact, one thing to be careful with when running the Cowboy Pitch is to not get too fancy as you slip through the HOV-lane sized hole that will open between the tight-end and fullbacks. Key Players Emmit Smith (RB) Dexter Coakley (LB) Philadelphia Eagles This year's Eagles are starting to make a name for themselves. The defensive side of the ball possesses a suffocating secondary led by Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent, and an assuredly slouch-less D-line. The offense is growing into its own with youthful QB Donovan McNabb and slippery running back Duce Staley. Together, with an underrated receiving crew, the offensive skills' men can score big when they get things firing on all cylinders. Split Queens Formation: Weak Pitch While most plays in this formation result in passing plays, the Weak Pitch shakes it up a bit. With the backs set up in a wishbone formation, they both break to the right at the snap. Staley will run his ass off, making sure to block the defensive end lined up inside the lone wide receiver. Assuming Staley sticks his block, Pritchett should have no trouble bringing the ball around the corner for a moderate gain on the pitch. Weak Pitch Exchange Doubles Formation: Exchange At first glance this play looks like a smorgasbord of pass routes. Not to worry, it's really quite simple. To start with, the play has four wide receivers split evenly on both sides of the ball. The lone back, Staley, will come out of the backfield and start heading down field. Just as he breaks down the field, the right- side wide receivers will cut to the inside and outside, thus giving the secondary plenty of reason to stay home. Meanwhile, wide-outs Johnson and Brown head down field and cross about 15 yards deep. Chances are, even if you overthrow Johnson, the chaos created by the last-minute crossing route may draw a pass interference call. Either way, it will likely be first and ten Eagles! Key Players Duce Staley (RB) Bobby Taylor (DB) New York Giants The G-men of the Meadowlands are a new-look team, and I'm not just referring to their old school uniforms. For the first time in several years, they have an offense that can move the ball both through the air and on the ground. While QB Kerry Collins is showing a unique ability to get the ball to Amani Toomer, it is the power running of Ron Dayne that minimizes the pressure past Giants' QB's have felt. As for the defense, with names like Strahan, Sehorn, and Armstead, it's safe to say they are a solid bunch. Look for the Giants to be a close runner-up in the NFC East and sneak into the playoffs as a Wild Card. Ace Formation: Coffin Corner This play is most often used on big yardage situations, like on second and 15. Both tight-ends and the the two wide receivers will head out on varying routes. The tight- ends will cross about 5 yards out, with the left side TE cutting across the middle underneath the coverage. He is your safety valve if the wide-outs are covered. Nevertheless, the play is designed to go deep and Hilliard is the hot-read down the right side. Air it out as soon as he begins his angle to the sideline. Run this play properly and you'll be high-fiving on Hoffa's grave. Coffin Corner Goliath Lead Double I Tight Formation: Goliath Lead Definitely a short-yardage power play, this running play features the powerful Ron Dayne straight up the gut of the defense. Not without some help, mind you. The right- side tackle will pull out of position and be the first to hit the whole between the center and left guard. The fullback, Comella, will lead Dayne through the hole for the yard or two they need. Key Players Amani Toomer (WR) Jessie Armstead (LB) Washington Redskins Great things are expected of this year's 'Skins. On paper they are arguably one of the best teams ever assembled… but that is on paper. On offense, the Redskins let the fireworks explode with Brad Johnson connecting deep with Michael Westbrook and Albert Connell. To balance the aerial assault there is the always consistent north- south running of Stephen Davis. The Redskins defensive side of the ball is stacked with future Hall of Fame inductees. Bruce Smith, Darrel Green, and Deion Sanders, to name a few. When playing NFL 2K1 as the Redskins you can expect to win on "Any Given Sunday". Author's Note: Go Redskins!!!!!! Split Gun Formation: Z Dig This third down play is great for catching the defense in mismatches. For starters Connell and Fryar are going to run straight, deep, vertical routes. Sure to lure the safeties away from the play. Westbrook, lined up outside on the left will start his route by slanting towards Fryar, where he will then follow him sown the field for 10 yards. Westbrook will break to the center of the field about 15 yards deep, so release the ball right before he makes the cut. What makes this play great, however, is that Centers is in the flat on the left. If, for whatever reason, you can't get the ball deep simply dump it off to Centers. Jumbo I Formation: Hammer Toss If you're inside the ten yard line and want to run it in, this is the play for you. As if Davis didn't have enough power on his own, this play gives him two tight-ends, a fullback, and the tank of a lineman Tre Johnson as blockers. The end result is almost always Davis walking into the endzone untouched. While many teams will run a toss to the strong side, none attack it like the Redskins are able to with Johnson. He pulls from the left so quickly, with such power, it's a wonder that the 'Skins don't use him as a fullback. Key Players: Stephen Davis (RB) Champ Bailey (CB) NFC CETRAL Chicago Bears Either the NFC Central is starting to get a little weaker or the Bears are making a comeback. Probably a bit of both. Plagued by injuries, quarterback ineptitude, and playing in a kick-ass division in recent years, the Bears are poised for a turnaround. A very young team, they could have the makings of a great offensive unit in McNown, Enis, and Robinson. As for the defense, they are a young group as well with few, if any, true leaders. One thing for sure is that you don't play as the Bears for their kicking game. Empty Bunch Formation: Big City Sneak Nobody runs the QB Sneak more extravagantly than Da Bears! What's so special? How about lining Curtis Enis up as a fifth wide receiver, only to have all five of them sprint down the field 25 yards as decoys. Once they get good and deep, the QB tucks it in and heads to the right of the center. A very fun play to call on second and short when the defense is expecting you to take a shot down the field. Bears I Formation: Motion Swing Here the Bears are lined up in a traditional I Formation, except Bobby Engram is lined up off the ball. Engram will go in motion, cutting across the field from the right side, to become the outside wide receiver on the left. You can hit him quick off the line or, if the defense is clamping down on Robinson, hit Engram deep. Key Players: Marcus Robinson (WR) Brad Culpepper (DT) Tampa Bay Buccaneers The Buccaneers come into the 2000-01 season marked as one of the favorites to win the whole enchilada. Although the Bucs' have consistently been able to rely on their defense led by All-Pro Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks, the addition of Keyshawn Johnson should give them the firepower they need to score more frequently. Unfortunately, the unproven Shaun King at QB may be the only thing stopping this team from knocking off the Rams as NFC Champions. If hard-nose football is your preferred style, then the Bucs' are for you. With one of the most suffocating defenses and perhaps the best halfback-fullback combo in the league, the Buccaneers are certainly a force to be wrecking with. Doubles Tight Formation: Screen The Bucs' take the idea of using a lineman on a pull block to a new level with their screen. Rather than simply pulling the guard, they pull the entire left side of the line of scrimmage to block downfield effectively setting up the screen. Despite the Bucs recently acquired deep threat, this solid screen to Alstott will consistently pick up 5 to 10 yards. I Tight Formation: Motion Zone With two tight ends in on blocking assignments, and only a single receiver in on the play, the Motion Zone gives the appearance of an up-the-gut run play. By bringing the receiver in motion to the left, you get additional outside blocking. Together, Johnson and Alstott should succeed in clearing the way for Dunn, who is getting the ball on a pitch. Assuming the play is adequately bocked, it will yield a respectable 6 yards on most attempts. Key Players: Warrick Dunn (RB) Warren Sapp (DT) Detroit Lions The Lions are a bit of an enigma. They are as likely to beat a would-be superpower as they are to lose to the league's punching bags. Case in point: last season they defeated both the Bucs and the Rams only to lose to the Arizona Cardinals the following week. The Lions have an average offense as led by Charlie Batch. The running game is improving with James Stewart primarily to credit for that. The Lions are a bit stronger on defense with Robert Porcher leading a solid pass rush. Of course, one cannot discount the Lions twelfth man—the Silverdome crowd. If there is a single field in the NFL that truly provides a home-field advantage, it is the Pontiac Silverdome. This place can rock! I Pair Formation: Play Action Vertical There is no way this is going to be a passing play! That's what the defense will be thinking when they see the pair of tight-ends on the left and the stacked backfield. Usually, the I Pair Formation will only come out in short yardage situations, but this play offers much bigger dividends. By faking the handoff to the fullback, Schlesinger, Morton will be able to get the separation he needs and take off down the field. Hang it out in front of him and let him chase it down. Ace Formation: Silver Zone The Silver Zone may not look like much, but it works. With a stacked line of scrimmage, including a tight-end on each side, there is literally a ton of humanity blocking for you. And each one of them is blocking to the left. All this leaves you to do is to take the ball and lead Stewart around the right-side corner. Key Players: Herman Moore (WR) Robert Porcher (DE) Green Bay Packers The Packers of today are very similar to the Packers that won the Super Bowl several years ago—except they're older. Especially on the defensive side of the ball where they really get beat upon by the passing attack. On offense, the Packers are still alive and kicking. The strong arm of Favre combined with the great hands of Freeman is still one of the better duos in the league. Add to this the running of Dorsey Levens and you have yourself a winning offense. If, that is, the defense doesn't get you stuck in a shootout. Split Queens Formation: Comeback The Pack's version of the Comeback differs from many others you will find around the league in that it sends both backs out in flare patterns. Good or bad, this diversion leaves Favre very, very unprotected as there are no tight-ends in on Split Queens' plays. Both the inside left wide receiver and Freeman, on the right, are going to cut to the right 10-15 yards out. Bradford, your comeback man, will be lined up on the outside left. Use Favre's zippy arm to sling it in their as quick as you can. The key to this play working is throwing the ball before the receiver comes back for it. Pull the cord when Bradford get 8 yards out. I Formation: Vince Lombardi Toss This classic play works well for the Packers and it will work for you too. Lined up in the old-school I Formation, Levens is going to get the toss and head to the strong side. To make things easier on our ball-carrier, the right guard will pull and block the DE to the inside. This leaves the fullback as your lead blocker. Break inside of the wide receiver, Schroeder, and you should have a moderate gain on your hands. Key Players: Brett Favre (QB) LeRoy Butler (DB) Minnesota Vikings Before last year's outburst in St. Louis, the Vikings were the most electrifying team to watch. Well, they are still a respectable second in that category. Despite turning to newcomer Culpepper at QB, you can count on the downpour of touchdown passes to continue. Just remember to not forget about the running of Robert Smith and future Hall of Famer Chris Carter when going deep. They are part of the reason for Moss's success. As for defense, the Vikings have sackmaster John Randle leading the charge. The front seven are pretty stalwart but the secondary can stand some improvement. This latter aspect will be the reason why the Vikings will lose to the Rams come December. Vikings I Formation: Pillager This play features the two star Vikings' receivers, Moss and Carter split wide. Culpepper will drop back behind the protection of his two backs. Carter will do a 5 yard out pattern and Moss will slant across the field. The curl run by McWilliams, the tight-end, should put him in a great position to knock Moss's defender out of the play. Of course, this will require hitting Moss early in the route, about 7 yards deep. Vikings I Tight Formation: Blood Thirsty Lead Ok, I admit I just like the name of this play. But that doesn't mean it won't work. Of course, it is best suited for fourth and inches or goal line situations. This two tight-end set uses the classic I to take it straight into the heart of the defense. Requiring a big push by the offensive line, Smith should be able squeeze a yard or two out of this one. Any more would be barbaric. Key Players: Randy Moss (WR) John Randle (DT) NFC WEST San Francisco 49ers The 49ers are a once great team struggling to have a .500 season. Sure, legendary Jerry Rice still suits up for them on most Sundays, but don't think for a second that this is a team with a strong passing attack. Terrell Owens will get his share of passes by the accurate, if nothing else, Jeff Garcia, but you're going to need to make Charlie Garner carry the ball 30-plus times a game if you're to score much. And even then, you better hope the incredibly young defensive unit can keep you in the game. San Francisco is often referred to as the birthplace of the "West Coast Offense" and it shows. The playbook is chock full of play-action, short range passing configurations. Split Queens Formation: Bingo This play will have Rice and Stokes lined up on the right, with a slanting Owens joining up with them 10 yards out, putting all three wide receivers in a tight bunch on the right. Meanwhile, the two backs will cut across the field just pass the defensive line. Garner should lure another linebacker or two to the right, freeing up the entire left side to the fullback. A good play for third and short yardage situations. Split Twins Formation: Shift Trap This play starts with a typical looking wishbone and then shifts the halfback outside the right-side tight end. By committing the halfback to the strong side of the line, defenses will often shift as well—preparing for a pitch. However, the fullback will get the ball and run left, shielded from defenders by the blocking of the two wide receivers. Key Players: Terrell Owens (WR) Bryant Young (DT) Atlanta Falcons The Falcons are only two seasons removed from winning the NFC Championship and much of the team is still in tact. Unfortunately for them, their divisional rival St. Louis Rams, who they must play twice a year, look to have a lock on the divisional title. So what does this mean? It means that if you can get Jamal Anderson back to his pre-injured level of play and get Chris Chandler in a groove with Terance Mathis, you might be looking at a wild card team in Atlanta. As for the defense, they can cover the pass real well, but don't scare many with their D-lineman. Look for the defense to be a liability against the run. Falcons I Formation: Screen Another unique twist on the popular screen play. In the Falcons-preferred flavor, both backs will stay in close and protect the QB, who takes a 5-step drop. The tight- end and the right side wide receiver will cross about 5 yards out. Meanwhile, the center and left guard and tackle will pull and cascade down the left side, outside of the typical tackle box. Behind this new shield of coverage the outside wide recieiver will come in close for the screen pass, get the ball, and head down the filed behind the nearly 1,000 pounds of blocking that have shifted over. Strong I Formation: Motion Crack Lead This running play is designed for Jamal Anderson to bust out around the outside corner for moderate gains on first and second down. The added oomph comes from the left side receiver, Mathis, who motions to the right and pops the strong side linebacker coming around the tight end. Anderson will follow the blocking of his fullback around the corner. Key Players: Jamal Anderson (RB) Ashley Ambrose (DB) Carolina Panthers Primarily due to the impotent offense, the Panthers are slowly sinking to the bottom of the NFC West. The wealth of older veteran players they had built the team on in the 90's is getting too old and too slow to keep up with the rest of the league. It is apparent that the Panther offense of Steve Buerlein, Tim Biakabutuka (what happened to Tshimanga?), and Muhsin Muhammad can't find the endzone frequently enough. The defense, however, works well together but is rapidly approaching retirement. The Panthers will likely be a team that frustrates you due to their inherent lack of speed—especially on defense. Double Right Slot Formation: Mirror Outs When you're in your two-minute drill and in need of a play that will pick up a first down and stop the clock, go to the Mirror Outs. Buerlein will take a deep drop while the three wide receivers and tight-end, Wesley Walls, run their routes. Muhammad and Hayes on the left and right, respectively, will run ten yard out patterns. Meanwhile, Walls and the receiver in the slot will clog up the middle of the field. Zip it to either of the guys on the out pattern as soon as they make their cut. If they should be covered too well, dump it off to Biakabutuka on the left. Trey Formation: Cat's Eye Zone This running play is going to feature both Biakabutuka's power and his speed. The entire line is going to block to the strong side. Biakabutuka will parallel the line of scrimmage behind their blocking and turn it north at the first it of daylight, presumably between the tight-end and inside wide receiver. Either way, should you break through the first two tacklers, this play will see you with considerable open- field running. Key Players: Wesley Walls (TE) Eric Davis (DB) St. Louis Rams Speed kills… defenses. With perhaps the fastest team in NFL history, the St. Louis Rams are likely to repeat as Super Bowl Champions, much less NFC West title winners. Regardless of whether you run with Faulk, or pass to Bruce, Hakim, Faulk, or any of the others, this team can score from any position on the field. The defense of the Rams, however, is their Achilles heel. Without any of the big names found elsewhere around the league, the defensive unit of the Rams allows other offensive-minded teams almost as many points as their own offense can generate. So, look for close, high-scoring games against NFC teams like the Buccaneers, Redskins, and Vikings. You can expect blowouts against everyone else. Ram Left Formation: Curls Granted, it's one of the least complicated plays run out of the Ram Left, it is a very effective tool at chipping away yardage while eating up the clock. Dissection of this play begins with Faulk and the tight-end Conwell slanting to the right. The lineman will all drop back to pass protection, requiring Warner to take a deep drop. Hakim and Bruce are your receivers on the right, both of who will curl to the center of the field ten yards out. The key to this play is the speed of Bruce running past, and around, Hakim who is the intended receiver. Fire the ball into Hakim's hands just before he begins to curl and Bruce will be there to bust him free of his defender. From there on, it's off to the races! Weak I Formation: Gold Reverse There's only one thing better than busting Marshall Faulk loose around the corner, and that is reversing it the other way with Isaac Bruce. The play begins to the strong side with the fullback leading the way. Bruce will back behind the line of scrimmage and meet the ball carrier. Guide Faulk to the far side of Bruce and hit the D Pad to the left to lateral him the ball. All you have to do now is steer the speedy Bruce around the right side. *The key to this play is working the Dreamcast controller effectively. I suggest you put your right thumb on the D-Pad immediately following the snap. Let your left thumb steer Faulk with the analog stick and use your right thumb to tap to the right on the D-Pad as Bruce draws alongside him. Practice this play before using it in a game and you should be able to work up to the transition going as smooth as can be. Key Players: Marshall Faulk (RB) Kevin Carter (DE) New Orleans Saints Teams, for the longest time, had looked forward to playing New Orleans. If not for the trip to Bourbon Street after the game, then for the easy victory they would were likely to get. Not so anymore. The Saints have been rejuvenated by the veteran QB Jeff Blake and the running of Ricky Williams. Even the defense has improved to a certain extent. While still extremely susceptible to the deep ball, their ability to stuff the run is much better than recent years. Double Gun Left Formation: Lure Deep Angle This play utilizes three wide receivers, all of which are headed twenty or more yards down the field. With the secondary lured deep and Glover adding protection to the left side, Williams is free to leave the backfield. And he does. Williams will angle out and then back to the center. Hit him about 5 yards out and he should be able to pick up moderate gains in the open field. Saints Right: Quick Toss Assuming the Saints are able to get deep inside enemy territory, this is the play you want. The already stacked line of scrimmage will get extra help on the left by the second tight-end, and on the right by the fullback. Just as these two begin to jam the outside of the line, the ball is tossed to Williams who takes it hard around the left side. It's not a fancy play, but it works! Key Players: Ricky Williams (RB) La'Roi Glover (DT) PLAYBOOK NFL 2K1 has several options for you when it comes to play calling. The game comes packed full of plays in last year's NFL 2K "common" playbook that can be used for each and every team. In addition, this year's game ships with team-specific offensive playbooks as well. Here, you can use your favorite team's real playbook— the one that you see them utilize every Sunday throughout the season. Finally, for what may be the greatest new feature of the game, is the ability to edit and create custom plays of your own. NFL 2K1 gives you the option to view the plays in your playbook as either their type (i.e. inside run) or formation (i.e. I-formation). If you're a casual football fan and are new to the role of head coach, sorting your plays by "type" is for you. For those of you who've played some ball, know the difference between a nickel and a dime package, go ahead and choose the traditional "formation" sorting method. Either way, the plays will be there when you need them. This section of the guide will outline all of the formations from the common playbook (for team specific plays, see the newly updated "Teams" section of the guide). If you can master knowing what each of these formations are meant to do, you will have no problem with the little twists your favorite team may throw on these old standbys. Offensive Formations Trips This is a basic three receiver, one back set. Often, a play in the Trips formation will "flood" one side of the ball with all three wide receivers, leaving the tight end to come off the line on the opposite side. This formation is very effective for both running and passing plays. Spread The Spread formation is similar to the Trips, but the three wide receivers will always be split between the left and right sides of the ball. The tight end will always be lined up on the weak side, typically in the role of lead blocker for the running back, as this formation does not utilize a fullback. Many of your pitch- type running plays will come out of this formation. I Form The I formation is where most teams turn when they are looking to wear down their opponent with the power running game. This formation uses two wide receivers split wide, a tight end always lined up on the right side of the ball, and two backs in the backfield. The fullback is always used in a lead blocking role in this formation. In adition to the strong running game that comes out of the I formation, medium to deep range passing attacks are also prevalent. In these instances, the tight end will either be a decoy, or add to the protection of the QB. Pro Set Otherwise known as the "wishbone" formation, Pro Set is nearly identical to the I except the backs are lined up side by side. This formation is great for confusing defenses in that all of the options are there: deep passes, screens, halfback tosses, and even handoffs to the fullback. You should get a lot of mileage and variety from this formation. Shotgun Although this formation isn't run by every team, it's a good one to know. The most obvious feature is that the QB doesn't line up under center. Rather, the QB is positioned a few steps back in the pocket prior to the snap. This formation is almost always indication of a passing play, with four to five receivers heading downfield. Often, either the halfback or tight end will hang close to assist in pass protection. Pro Slot The Pro Slot formation utilizes three wide receivers and a full backfield. The receivers will always be split, and the fullback will typically be in position to lead the halfback through the hole. Oftentimes, the fullback will come out of the backfield and become a fourth receiver to replace the tight end who is sitting the play out. Turn to this formation for plays that really mix things up, especially if you have a fullback with good hands. Strong I This formation differs from the more traditional I formation insofar as the running backs aren't lined up behind one another. What this does, is allow for the fullback to be an option both as a receiver and primary runner. Quads This is the formation that most resembles the days of playground football. Four receivers split wide, a single back lined up behind the quarter back, and everyone "going deep". Not surprisingly, this formation is most seen when a team is down a couple scores and time is running out. Medium to very deep pass plays are the norm, but remember to run that HB delay to keep the defense honest. Week I Unlike the Strong I formation, the two receivers are almost always lined up on the left side of the ball, opposite the tight end. The fullback will also line up favoring the strong side. The "weak" in the Weak I formation comes into play in that the majority of these plays will be run to the weak side, that is where less blockers (and hopefully less defenders) are. Shallow passing routes and screens are also run from this formation. Ace The Ace formation is unique in that it utilizes two tight ends and no fullback. With seven guys on the line, it should come as no surprise that you will see a lot of running plays come out of this formation. But, perhaps more importantly, is the brilliant "play action" plays that can be pulled off. The defense reads "run", the QB fakes it to the halfback and then hits the screaming wide receiver on a deep post. Works like a charm. Clock Whether it's spiking the ball or taking a knee; you're gonna be doing it from this no-frills formation. Special Special teams plays will each have a slightly different look with different personnel taking the field. On offense, you'll be punting, going for a field goal, or faking one of them. NFL 2K1 gives you several options for "fake" plays. Goal Line The standard formation to use when your deep inside enemy territory is the Goal Line formation. Similar to the Ace formation, it stacks the line with two tight ends, but drops the second wide reciever in favor of a full back. Power running, screen passes, and QB bootlegs are the norm when lined up in this formation. Just don't forget to dive! Defensive Formations 4-3 Cover The 4-3 Cover defense is a basic, no frills formation. Four guys on the line with three linebackers adding supporting the run defense right behind them. You don't see any man-to-man coverage out of this set, nor do you see any blitzing. 4-3 Blitz This formation differs from the standard 4-3 in that the middle linebacker crowds the right side of the line, an obvious sign of a blitz. Five guys on the line of scrimage opens up a lot of chances for creativity. Many of these plays will see the blitzing linebacker drop back into coverage, while a member of the secondary bltizes. Other plays will call for a four man rush, with everyone else in man-to- man coverage. And other plays will call for an eight man rush. Expect it all with this versatile formation. 3-4 The 3-4 defensive set gets its name from utilizing three lineman and four linebackers. Don't let this fool you into thinking there's not gonna be a strong pass rush. There is always at least one linebacker (typically outside) joining the rush, often engaged in a stunt of some sort with the tackle. The safeties will always be in a deep zone, whereas the corners will switch to man coverage if the linebackers are blitzing. Nickel Cover Nickel Cover plays utilize 2 linebackers and three corner backs. These plays are designed to defend against the pass and often utilize a combination of bump-and-run man coverage by the linebackers with zone defense being applied by the safeties. If it's third and long, this is where you should turn. Nickel Blitz This formation takes the basic Nickel package and turns it upside down. Every one of these plays will call for a linebacker, corner back, or combination of both to be blitzing. This formation is all about knocking the QB on his ass. With mutliple blitzing linebackers, down lineman stunting every which way, the best way to counter this is to run the ball. The defense will be so geared up trying to get the sack, that slippery running backs can typically peel off big gains against this formation. Beware! Nickel Odd The Nickel Odd formation is a combination of the 3-4 and Nickel Cover formations, using three cornerbacks, but swapping out the fourth lineman in favor of a third linebacker. While few of these plays are going to tally a sack, they provide a great source of defense against the short pass, as well as the outside running game. Dime The Dime package is an often used formation in passing situations. Four cornerbacks and one linebacker provide the meat of the secondary. Many of these plays will utilize the lone linebacker on a blitz. Othertimes, an impenetrable wall of zone coverage will be established by the seven guys in the secondary. The Dime package is typically seen on second down passing situations, when the offense still has another down to get the first. Dime Odd You guessed it! This formation switches out a tackle in favor a second linebacker, thereby bringing the total number of men in the secondary up to eight. But, don't think for a second that you are only going to rush three lineman. This formation, like the Nickel Odd, uses a plethora of stunts and blitzes to throw off the would-be offense. You will find it to be a good mix of a strong pass rush and protection against the mid to deep passing attack. Goal Line Defensive sets down near the goal line have the benefit of not having to worry about the deep ball. Therefore, they drop the safeties in favor of an extra tackle and cornerback. Five lineman and an outside linebacker provide the immediate rush, while two more linebackers guard up high. The three cornerbacks help to protect against any short passes or bootlegs that are attempted. Special Defensive Special Teams plays consist of punt returns and punt and field goal block attempts. If it's fourth down and a non-critical time in the game, get ready for a punt return, if the yardage is too great for a field goal. Once you catch the ball with your return man it's just like playing offense. GAME MODES Numerous modes of play exist outside of Season Mode. Select the particular style of play you are interested in from the list. There you will find a description of the game, tips on how to maximize your success, and even a mini-walkthrough of what to expect. You can play any of the modes in any order you like. However, for those of you new to the game, they are listed in what should be considered a recommended progression of difficulty. Practice - become familiar with the controls here. Tutorial - a short game chock full of tips for helping you improve. Quickstart - jump right into a quick game with random teams and weather. Exhibition - a single game, set up any way you like. Tourney - 4, 8, or 16 team single-elimination tournament. Great for parties. Playoffs - guide your favorite team through the post season. Season - play through an entire season in hopes of reaching the Super Bowl. Fantasy - draft your own Dream Team and see how they fair. Franchise - play the role of General Manager, Coach, and player. Network - see how you stack up against other players around the world. SEASON MODE Once you feel you have the basics down and feel up to the test of will and endurance that is the NFL regular season, select Season mode from the main menu. If this is your first time playing select New from the menu, but be careful as this will overwrite any in-progress tourneys or seasons. The designers of the game were nice enough to include offensive, defensive, special teams, and overall ratings of each team in the league. Additionally, they've included their regular season records from last year. You can see this guide's Teams section for a quick analysis of each team, along with their schedule for the upcoming 2000-01 season that you will be guiding them through. Once you pick a team press Start and enter the Season mode's main menu screen. This is the screen you will return to after each game and whenever you want to change the game options, customize new players or teams, view the stats, or play another week. The Customize menu is the same as that which you can enter from the game's main menu. See the Customize section of this guide for specific information on that feature. The NFL regular season is 17 weeks long, with each team playing 16 of those 17 weeks. Statistics will be compiled throughout the season, seasonal tallies being reported in-game as of week 3. After each game you can view the injury list, check out who's leading each position in Pro Bowl votes, and, of course, check on the standings and statistics. Got a player out for the year with a torn ACL? Consult the free agency pool and sign someone else. You can also make mid-season trades with other teams. But don't expect them to be fools; the computer owned teams are smart enough to decline imbalanced trades like your offer of Billy Joe Hobert for Brett Favre. Don't forget to keep an eye on those statistics. Your performance week in and week out is directly correlated to the number of Pro Bowl votes certain players get. If your well-balanced offense is holding back your star running back, pull in the reins on the gunslinger and start using the workhorse more often. Also, know which team's studs are ahead of you in the voting. When it comes time to play them, tee off on their aces every chance you get. If you find that you are a mathematical lock for home field advantage all the way through the playoffs, and it's near the end of the season, go ahead and simulate the last couple of weeks. While this is a good sign that you should be playing on a higher difficulty setting, there's nothing wrong with taking a roll of the dice. But be warned, you're gonna lose some precious Pro Bowl votes in the process. The Playoffs: Newcomers to "America's Passion" (good line Howie!) may be a bit confused by the format of the NFL Playoffs. With terms like wild cards, bye weeks, home field advantage, it's no wonder. It's really quite simple, though. There are four weeks of play in the Playoffs: the Wild Card games, Divisional games, Conference Championships, and the Super Bowl. The teams with the top two regular season records in each conference get a "bye week" and are able to sit out the week of the Wild Card games and host the Divisional playoff games the following week. The next four best teams in the conference, including the other divisional winner, will play in the Wild Card games. The team with the absolute best regular season record in each conference will have "home field advantage" all the way through the playoffs— for as long as they keep winning. After three weeks of play, through single- elimination games, six teams in each conference will be whittled down to one—the Conference Champion. These two teams, the AFC and NFC Champions, will meet at a predetermined site to play for the World Championship in the Super Bowl, the biggest sports spectacle in the world! The Super Bowl XXXV Anomaly: The site of the Super Bowl is typically a moderate climate stadium or a dome, due to the game's late January date. This has always been at a neutral site over the thirty-odd years the game has been played. This year, however, the Super Bowl is being played in sunny Tampa Bay, Florida, home to a team considered by many to be the NFC favorites. Could a team actually play in the Super Bowl on their home turf? Suit up as the Bucs' and see if it can be done! The Pro Bowl: Whoa, it's not over yet! You worked so hard during the regular season that you and your family have been awarded a trip to Hawaii to play in the NFL Pro Bowl. In this AFC versus NFC yawner of a game, you will get to control either conference, regardless of which your in-season team belonged. Personally, the best thing about this game is getting to see so many different helmets on the field at once (something Sega chose not to do). No one wants to risk getting hurt, few outside of the stadium are watching, and no one remembers who won come dinner time. Hell, if the NHL playoffs started earlier, this game probably wouldn't even be played! Enjoy! CUSTOMIZE By selecting Customize from the game's main menu, you will be on your way to constructing your own players, teams, and plays. Through this option you will also be able to keep records for yourself and download roster updates through the Sega network. Although this section of the game is entirely up to your imagination, here is a brief step-by-step to help you through some of the customizable entities in the game. Players: The Players screen lets you import previously created players from other VMU's, view the Player Cards, and, of course, create your own player. To create your own player, select it from the menu and assign a name and jersey number to him in the following screen. Pick the position you want him to play at and the Team. If you're involved in a season already, you may have to cut someone or put your created player in the free agent pool until your roster has an opening. In the Player Attributes screen you get to design your player's appearance, shape and size, and pick out his accessories—all in real time. Adjust the player's weight, height, face mask (27 types available), shoe style, all the way down to whether or not he wears a breathe strip. Once the player is created physically, it's time to adjust his skills. Select one of the presets and then divvy up the strength points to the various skills as you see fit. Once your done, you'll see your new player added to the list. Teams: The Teams screen gives you the option to create your own team from scratch, trade with other teams, sign free agents, etc. You can also reset the rosters to their original designs in this screen. Begin creating your own team by picking a city, stadium, and uniforms. You can even pick from a limited number of logos. The next step in team creation is to begin signing players. Sign pros, create from scratch, it's all up to you. Once you have eleven guys on the roster your official. They can be eleven of the same player, playing the same position and it will pass. Plays: When you have a solid understanding of the formations, know how to read the plays real well, and have some time to get creative definitely check out the create-a-play feature of the game. Begin your play creation by giving it a name and picking the playbook that contains the play you would like to base your play off of. Select the formation and the specific play to open up the editing screen. Use the Position button to cycle through the positions, the Assignment button to cycle through blocking and passing routes, the Modifier button to adjust the blocking at the line, the Primary button to set the primary receiver, and the Motion Mod button to set a receiver in motion. Once you're done coming up with a play of your own, save it into the user playlist. Don't forget to Save!