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Nickel and Dime Defenses

Teams with athletic personnel can run the nickel defense more often if the additional defensive back is big and strong enough to play closer to the line of scrimmage but athletic enough to drop into coverage.

The nickel defense in football refers to a lineup with five defensive backs, and the dime package features six defensive backs. These alignments are primarily used to stop the passing game, but variations of these defenses can also be effective versus the run.


In a typical nickel defense, there are four down linemen, two linebackers and five defensive backs. 

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