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ALL HAIL THE DOUBLE TEAM

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WE DON’T TALK ENOUGH ABOUT THE GREATEST MOST UNFAIR PLAY IN FOOTBALL

THE GREAT UNFAIRNESS OF THE DOUBLE TEAM IN ACTION

The double team, as a technique, is so damn good, y’all. It’s so good and we don’t recognize that enough. The double team is a great football moment because it is rude, just beyond rude in the best kind of way. Even when executed sloppily, it is the meanest reminder that in football, at one point, a player will find himself engaged in an unfair, numerically lopsided, and brutal matchup against superior numbers.

There are four defensive linemen, and there are five offensive linemen. Your number will come up. Your turn against a tackling sled that will not move will happen, and you can only hope that no one notices too much while it’s happening, and you’re flailing around trying to let everyone know that you’re doing your best in a very, very bad situation.

When it’s executed well? That’s even better. It looks like a belligerent drunkard being thrown out of a bar. It looks like two parents escorting an angry toddler out of a toy store. It looks like a politician in a mostly theatrical parliament brawl from like Korea or Ukraine being escorted from the premises by his onrushing assistants. It looks, most emphatically, like the most emphatic physical manifestation of being told “no” very, very firmly. It looks like the lineman is being detained, and is yelling “AM I BEING DETAINED???” like an angry libertarian with a webcam.

The double team is the best because it will happen to every defensive lineman, no matter how good they are. The downside is that it goes on film, and everyone gets to laugh at them about it. The upside: If and when it happens, and the defensive lineman manages to beat it, or even get a tackle/sack/pressure afterwards? Talk your shit, big man. You may talk all the shit there is to be talked, because beating two men coming at you like a wave of mad beef is a shit-talking event by any standard.

Like Clay Matthews here, for instance.

GOOD GOD CLAY MATTHEWS

Sure, that’s not two offensive linemen trying to double him, but that doesn’t really matter when you singlehandedly destroy an entire team’s blocking scheme. For bonus terror you might not see in college: Watch how fast Ha Ha Clinton-Dix flies in from the defensive backfield on this play, and marvel that anyone ever gains a yard in the NFL.