Slot Receivers – How to Find the Best Ones in the NFL


A football team isn’t complete without a reliable wide receiver who can line up in the slot. In a nutshell, the slot is an area on the field that’s lined up between an outside wide receiver and a tight end or offensive tackle. A slot receiver can run a variety of routes—up, in, and out, to the inside and the outside—and has a special skill set that makes him an important member of any offense.

The term “slot” also refers to a narrow opening in a machine or container—a hole you drop coins into, for instance, or the space where a seat belt fits. You can also “slot” something into another item—a CD into a player, for example. And you can use the word to describe a specific time period in which something occurs—he booked a flight for a week from now.

There are a few ways to find out if a slot game has a high payout percentage. The most obvious is to look at the pay table on the machine, which will show how much you can win if certain symbols line up on the pay line. You can also look for the payout chart on the game’s rules or information page, or within a help menu. On video slots, the payout chart is usually displayed on-screen.

Slot receivers typically start pre-snap between the last offensive tackle or tight end and one of the outside wide receivers. This positioning allows them to get open in multiple directions on passing plays, as they are close enough to the quarterback to receive quick passes while still providing plenty of running room for slant and out routes. On running plays, slot receivers are also crucial blockers for the ball carrier.

Slot receivers must be fast and agile, especially when compared to outside wide receivers. They must have top-notch route-running skills and be able to run precise patterns, while avoiding contact at all costs. And they must be able to adjust their routes depending on what the defense is doing on any given play. In addition, they need to be tough enough to absorb big hits while being able to elude and evade defenders on a regular basis. The best NFL slot receivers are a mix of speed and size. They’re usually a little smaller and faster than their outside counterparts, but they’re big and tough enough to hold up against the league’s top defensive backs. Examples of great slot receivers include Julio Jones, Cooper Kupp, and Stefon Diggs. They’re all fast and versatile, but they also know how to run precise routes and avoid the defense’s best defenders. They can be a nightmare for opposing defensive coordinators. And that’s what makes them such a vital part of any offense.