What’s The Difference Between the Triple Option and the Flexbone?

TRIPLE OPTION

The TRIPLE OPTION is an American football scheme used to offer multiple ways to progress the football forward in the field of play. The triple option is based on the option run, but uses three players who may run with the ball instead of the two that are used in the standard option run.

The triple option forces defenses to worry about multiple running options on a single play. For the offense, the decision of who is to carry the ball – which option to use – is made during the play by the quarterback (QB).  

The QB makes the decision whether to give the ball to the running back (RB) or to keep the ball based on what the defensive end (DE) does. If the DE pinches down, the QB pulls the ball. If the DE runs straight upfield or directly at the QB then the QB gives the ball to the RB. 

The triple option can be complemented by fixed running plays which look like the triple option when they start but use traditional blocking, as well as play-action passing.


FLEXBONE

Spread Formation Alignments Offensive Line- 3-plus foot splits--inside hand on heels of Center. Center in four-point stance. A-backs- one yard behind Offensive Tackle; inside foot on outside foot of Offensive Tackle. Receivers- 12 yards from Offensive Tackle. If ball is on hash, eight yards from Offensive Tackle. B-Back behind Quarterback. Depth is determined how fast he can get into the point when the Quarterback points the ball on Triple/Midline. Quarterback- behind center with balanced feet.

Spread Formation Alignments
Offensive Line- 3-plus foot splits–inside hand on heels of Center. Center in four-point stance.
A-backs- one yard behind Offensive Tackle; inside foot on outside foot of Offensive Tackle.
Receivers- 12 yards from Offensive Tackle. If ball is on hash, eight yards from Offensive Tackle.
B-Back behind Quarterback. Depth is determined how fast he can get into the point when the Quarterback points the ball on Triple/Midline.
Quarterback- behind center with balanced feet.

FLEXBONE is an offensive formation in American football that uses a quarterback, five offensive linemen, three running backs, and varying numbers of tight ends and wide receivers. 

The flexbone formation is a predominant running formation derived from the wishbone formation and it features a quarterback under center with a fullback lined up directly behind the quarterback. There are two smaller running backs called slotbacks aligned behind the line of scrimmage on each side of the offensive line. The slotbacks are sometimes incorrectly referred to as wingbacks. But, in order to be a wingback, there must be a guard, tackle and tight end all on one side of the center on the line of scrimmage and then the wingback off the line of scrimmage (as featured in the unbalanced formation diagram).

Air Force Academy Head Coach Fisher DeBerry was once quoted as saying “we need to be more flexible in the Bone.” Hence, the term “Flexbone” was born.