An edge rusher in American football is a defensive player who attacks the quarterback from the outside. defensive ends and outside linebackers are two positions that are considered front running backs.
The name edge rusher is used because these players often play on the edge (end) of the formation.
Reading: What position is edge in football
An edge runner will be the farthest outside runner on any non-rush play. these players will generally be one on one against the offensive tackle in these snaps.
Because they are on the edge of the formation, these pass-rushers will play in open space.
this makes it much easier for them to get to the quarterback. for this reason, pass rushers are often the most effective pass rushers on defense.
This is why teams value leading edge runners so highly. these players are often the highest paid on defense due to their ability to get to the quarterback.
It is common for these players to lead the team with rushing, sacking and pressure.
When it comes to rushing plays, edge runners don’t play as big a role as they do in the passing game.
rushers primarily establish the advantage on running plays. this means they will seal off their end of the defensive line and not allow the ball carrier to get out of them.
Normally, the ball carrier will not be brought down by the sideline, but instead will be guided back to midfield.
once in the middle of the field, other defense players will be in charge of taking down the running back.
If the run is out, then an edge defender may be responsible for making the tackle. On these running plays, the offensive line will place a screen on the defender’s edge, making it difficult to tackle.
what positions are edge runners?
Now that we’ve broken down what a rim runner is in football, you may be wondering what positions play this role on defense. There are two positions that are primarily considered to be frontrunners.
defensive ends in a 4-3
Defensive ends in a four-three defense are considered edge runners. this is because they line up at the end of the formation.
A four-three defense means there are four defensive linemen and three linebackers.
Since there are four defensive linemen, the two defensive ends will be out of the formation.
This allows them to run around the rim on passing plays, for this reason defensive ends in a four-three formation are considered rim runners.
outside linebackers in a 3-4
an outside linebacker in a three-four defense is the other position that is considered an edge runner.
In a 3-4 defense there are only three defensive linemen. for this reason, teams often rush their outside linebackers toward the quarterback.
Since there are four linebackers, the outside linebackers will line up wide.
This results in outside linebackers being considered edge defenders in this formation.