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Madden 17 Tips: Gun Bunch – Z Spot

Those of you guys who watched Madden School TV last night are probably familiar with today’s free Madden 17 tip.  We gave any Madden School member who wanted it the chance to play Stickwork.  If they won, they got $20 in their pocket.  It was a fun night all around and Stickwork ended up going 9-1 only losing in tightly contested battle.

Thanks to everyone who came out and was brave enough to challenge Stickwork.  A special congratulations to PuffMellow10 who won $20 and was the only guy to take down the champ. We’ll be doing more events like that soon so stay tuned.

This was one of the money plays used a lot in those games.  Stickwork and Stickhype will break it all down for you below.

Madden 17 Tips: Gun Bunch Z Spot

Madden School UnlimitedPlaybook: Cincinnati Bengals

Formation: Gun Bunch

Play: Z Spot


  1. Put the B/circle receiver on a drag route


  1. The first read is the route combo on the right side of the screen with the A/X and the RB/R1 receivers
  2. The second read is the drag route
  3. The third read is the running back out of the backfield on the delay route
  4. The final read is the X/Square receiver deep over the middle

Overview: This is a very effective play, especially with how quick of a setup the play is. The route combinations are very hard to cover no matter what defense your opponent is in.

Let’s dive into how this play works.


This is how the play should look right before you snap the ball.


After the snap, we see that the defense appears to be in some sort of cover 2 defense.  Notice that we can throw to our running back coming out of the backfield, our tight end in the flat, or our receiver on the drag route.  They are all open.


We instead decide to throw to our deep X/square receiver.  We anticipate that he will get open.


Our receiver makes the catch at around the 5 yard line.


Our receiver finally gets tackled near the 1 yard line for a gain of about 29 yards.

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Leave a comment

  1. @Madden school , im definitely stealing this play for my use lol. Simple and u can get the ball out quickly

  2. This is how I use it: 1. I don’t touch the hook. 2. I change the tight end to a slant to induce artificially zone space for the hook….on the snap, as soon as my QBs feet get in Rythm and the hook has turned I fire a bullet to the hook….if for some reason, it’s man to man, then I have enough time for the post break of the X receiver….to clear the way for the X receiver in case it is man to man, I motion my halfback to the strong side for protection and use slide protection to the weak side to complement that half back shift.

  3. I found a lot in practice that hot routing the Y running back to block along with drag route on B receiver allowed the X receiver more time to get downfield with the extra protection, and at the same time either pulled coverage away from B receiver to get further downfield by pulling coverage to assist with X receiver or ensured there was less help on X receiver if the coverage stayed low to help on the drag. With zone coverage, the CB covering the left side of the field seemed to drift upfield further like soft help on the X since his zone stays empty – the Y running back never goes in the area and by the time they realize the B guys is coming under it’s too late for them to recover. I got a steady 10+ yards uncontested on the B, less pressure on the QB and the X receiver is open more often, and this isn’t even taking away from all the stuff open with the right side of the field that you guys outlined already to keep the opponent guessing. I’m really interested to hear if this alternate setup seems to work well for you guys too or if I just got hokie defenses in my practice.

    1. @dzastyr, only thing about practice is it never accounts for the defensive pressure or schemes you will face online. No defensive shading or exotic zone or quick blitzes are done on defense when u are practicing. I always practice with the mindset of facing a blitz. I try to get the ball out quickly and effectively while knowing my reads against certain defenses. Anybody thats ranked in at least the top 500 online knows that’s most likely how the games will be played.

      1. @ready to play
        That’s what made me think about keeping the Y rb in to block – I found that with plays like this against good defenses it takes a little time to get the separation for the X receiver down field. Unless it’s an all out blitz this hot route really lets all the receivers get open because it picks up that one defender that seems to slip through the O-line so you have more time let the play develop downfield. I’ll have to lab it against some real competition.
        As for the defensive shading and exotic zones, etc – are there any tutorials online you can point me to? My offense is ok, but my defense is very basic and I feel like I get stops by luck and not skill. It would also help recognizing some of these things when players are doing them to me.

        1. @dzastyr, sure bro just go to youtube and look up several madden 17 videos that cover zones and how they work. U can also look up the tutorial videos of how to make adjustments to your defense quickly and easily . For example theres a way to zone all of your linebackers at once (yellow zone). But once you learn how to how route specific players now u can create your own exotic zones. So now instead of having all of your linebackers in a yellow zone, one can be in a flat zone, while the others can be in other types of zones as well. And the offense will never know until the ball is snapped lol