NFL fans will find so many differences when it comes to strong safety vs free safety. Safeties are quite important in all football matches around the world.
Now, when it comes to strong safeties, they are basically a mixture of a cornerback and a linebacker. Generally, strong safeties are positioned near the scrimmage line. Free safeties are considered the last line of defense. They assist with the run when required.
Apart from these features, strong safety is stronger and larger. Their main goal is to prevent the run during an NFL match. On the other hand, free safeties are more athletic and quite faster.
Below, we will have a detailed discussion on both strong and free safeties. Have a look.
What Is A Strong Safety?
In an NFL match, strong safety serves both as a cornerback and a linebacker. They are responsible for preventing the run, whereas their other jobs are to cover and do blitzes during a passing play.
These particular players are considered strong safeties as they are positioned on the strong side of the offensive team. It means they have to stand near the majority of offensive players.
The position of strong safety helps these players to do blitzes and prevent the run. Strong safeties are more powerful and bigger than free safeties. This feature of strong safety lets them shack the blockers and they can make the attack on the offense quickly.
When there is one tight end, the position of the strong safety is known as the strong side. Hence, the opposite side of strong safety is called the weak side. When you will see two tight ends, the strong side will be decided depending on the handedness of the QB.
What Is A Free Safety?
Free safety is totally different from strong safety. Strong safeties serve like linebackers, whereas free safeties work more like cornerbacks during an NFL match. Free safety is a player who is typically responsible for covering the QB during passing plays.
In an NFL match, the QB holds his position in the pocket. Therefore, free safety can do a blitz freely and assist other players on his side during the pass coverage. Free safeties are allowed to go unblocked during a running play. That is why they are able to attack when the play is developed.
The best-known skill of free safeties is pass coverage. Unlike strong safeties, free safeties are positioned on the last line of the defensive play. Free safeties survey the field during a match and are able to attach when required.
What Is The Difference Between Free Safety And Strong Safety?
The strong safety football position is completely different from the position of free safety. Their tasks are different as well.
Strong safety serves both as a cornerback and a linebacker. They are responsible for preventing the run, whereas their other jobs are to cover and do blitzes during a passing play.
A free safety position in football is more like a cornerback. Free safeties are quite faster and they can cover deep passing plays.
Now, let’s look at the different features of both strong and free safeties.
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Features Of Strong Safety
- Strong safeties are the mixture of a cornerback and a linebacker.
- Strong safeties are positioned on the strong side during an NFL match.
- They are generally more powerful and stronger than free safeties.
- They are typically responsible for covering the tight ends and running backs during a passing play.
Features Of Free Safety
- The tasks of free safeties are more like a cornerback.
- Free safeties usually survey the entire field and attack when required.
- They are able to tackle in a skilled way.
- Free safeties are quicker and faster.
- They are typically responsible for covering the QBs.
What Do Safeties Do In Pass Defense?
In pass defense, free safeties cover the deep zone even in the middle of the most man-coverage defenses. Also, they can help an underneath defensive player when required. If free safeties fail to tackle, it may end up in a long touchdown.
As for strong safeties, they are responsible for playing a deep zone along with a set of two-deep safety in pass defense. Here, he serves as a linebacker.
What Do Safeties Do In Run Defense?
The role of safeties in run defense can be different in each game. If the run defense of a football team plays very well, they can put their safeties back from the scrimmage line for preventing deep passes.
When the team is not doing good in a match, it can position its safety in the box. Thus, they will have more defense near the scrimmage line during running plays.
No matter what differences they hold in their positions, the tasks of both strong and free safeties are equally challenging during an NFL match. Both strong and free safeties may play in the same positions, but they own different responsibilities and unique skill sets. We hope this guide will give you enough information in understanding the different roles of strong and free safety.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Are free safeties or strong safeties bigger?
In an NFL team, strong safeties are always bigger than free safeties. Their main goal is to prevent the run during an NFL match. Free safeties are fast and quicker, on the other hand.
2. What does a free safety do?
Free safety is a player who is typically responsible for covering the QB during passing plays. Their main goal is to prevent the run during an NFL match. They also survey the field and attack when required.
3. Are strong safeties fast?
Strong safeties are quite fast, you can say. They have to cover almost the entire field. But free safeties are faster and quicker than strong safeties.
4. What does a safety do in football?
Safeties are mainly responsible for preventing the offensive players run a touchdown. They are the deepest players on the defense team.
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