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Published on Feb 27, 2009
Chin Over the Toes: When making your initial cut back to the ball, make sure you get your chin over your toes before you turn back. Not only will this help you make a balanced, efficient turn that doesn't waste movement, but you'll also keep your defender guessing on which way you're going to cut. Never cut corners when running your routes.
Come Back to the Ball: Once you're out of your cut, pumps your arms back toward the quarterback and run toward him. Do not stop. That will only allow your defender to catch up to you and make a play on the ball. Your quarterback may need time to scramble free, or find you as a receiver option, so keep coming back to the ball to stay open.
Get Your Hands Out: As the ball is being delivered, get your arms extended and your hands out, ready to catch the ball. By catching the ball with your hands away from your body, you keep the ball out of your defender's reach. If you try to catch the ball with your body, it's easier for the defender to reach around you and swat it away.
Tuck and Turn: Once you've caught the ball, tuck it tight to your body with both hands and turn up field away from the defender. So if the defender tries to make a play on the ball over your left shoulder, turn up field to your right. Whenever a defender makes a play on the ball, it's a good opportunity to shake him off and get yards after the catch.