1. The defense must defend the entire width of the field
2. The defense can't load the box to stop the run
3. Skill players get more touches in open space
RPO's are essentially option football. Like with option concepts, your quarterback is going to read a defender. With RPO's, however, you are going to throw the football rather than give the football based on the key defender.
I teach RPO's as three basic families. We have pre snap, post snap, and RPO specific concept. With a pre snap RPO, the quarterback is going to look at the pre snap alignment of the defense to determine whether he will throw the pass concept or execute the run.
With a post snap RPO the quarterback will read the post snap movement of a defender to determine whether he will give the ball or throw he ball.
RPO specific concepts are designed to give the quarterback a post snap run/pass option. The most popular post snap RPO is the stick draw concept.
When first installing RPO's I teach coaches to build the pre snap RPO's first. These are the easiest to execute and give you opportunities for explosive plays. These also give your quarterback simple reads based on pre snap defensive alignment.
The most basic pre snap RPO concept I like to install its he SMOKE concept. We call this quick. Quick is thrown to the #1 receiver. The #2 receiver is going to block for #1. The #1 receiver must catch the ball and get vertical. We tell our players this will often be a 6 yard gain, and if you break a tackle, it will be six points. Below is a diagram of the quick concept.
On the quick concept the quarterback is going to catch the snap and throw. His footwork is simply "turn two." What I mean is, we are going to turn a double play. We want to get the ball out quickly. The quarterback is going to determine whether he will throw the quick or execute the run based on the alignment of the 2nd defender from the outside in.
In the diagram below, the offense is running inside zone read with a quick concept to the twins. The quarterback finds the 2nd defender and sees that he is hipped on the defensive end. Essentially that gives us a 2-on-1 on the outside. We want to throw the quick. If the defense were to align the outside linebacker over the #2 receiver, the quarterback would execute the run.
If the defense were to walk out the outside backer over the number #2 WR, the quarterback would execute the run. This gives us numbers in the box.
Regardless of what defensive front is being run, the pre snap reads are the same for the quarterback. This is important when you install this system as it speeds up learning. In my book about RPO's I give you a systematic process to install pre snap RPO's without having to add any new verbiage! You will never again have to run the ball into a loaded box!
RPO's are great equalizers when defenses want to add defenders to the box to stop your run game. They give the offense the ability to take advantage of literally anything the defense does. The great thing about RPO's is that they can be added to any offense. You can add pre snap RPO's with relative ease. Once you build your pre snap RPO's, you begin to install your post snap RPO concepts. With a small investment you can add a huge element of explosiveness to your offense!
This year I put out a book on RPO's that will give you a systematic process to build RPO's into your offensive system. The book has an iBooks version and an Amazon Kindle version. The iBooks version can be read on the iPhone, iPad, and Mac. It is an amazing book that gives you over an hour of video! It has been read by coaches at all levels, and they have all loved it! This book gives you a systematic process for installing and teaching pre snap and post snap RPO's! This book will greatly enhance your offense! It can be ordered clicking here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1078061959.
If you don't have an apple device, you can order the paperback version! It is available on Amazon!