Adam Lechtenberg And The Inverted Veer

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Adam Lechtenberg, Virginia Tech
Adam Lechtenberg will coach Virginia Tech’s running backs. (Virginia Tech athletics)

Is new Hokie running backs coach Adam Lechtenberg an unheralded genius? Lots of writers—myself included—give Justin Fuente all the credit for developing the Power Read play. But what if it was a GA on the TCU staff who chimed in with a now-obvious tweak to the Inverted Veer play? On a podcast this past spring, Brandon Lechtenberg (Adam’s brother) talked about how his brother was responsible for one simple change that revamped the Veer and had defenses spending years trying to catch up.

Brandon and Adam were both GAs on the TCU staff with Fuente, Brandon on defense and Adam on offense. During a spring staff meeting the TCU offensive minds were talking about the Inverted Veer. The IV—where the QB reads the DE and either gives on an off-tackle run or keeps through the B-gap—was a hot play thanks largely to Urban Meyer. The offensive minds were looking at the play and trying to figure out how it would be installed when a certain GA piped up and asked why they couldn’t pull the guard to lead for the QB if he kept.

In Brandon’s telling, the idea was dismissed as silly, though it was anything but. Classic veer plays use a combo-and-climb blocking scheme; at the point of attack, this leads to what is basically gap-scheme blocking. And these days (in college, at least) you rarely see a gap-blocked play that doesn’t have one or two backside