A slot is a narrow notch or opening, as in a keyway in a machine or a slit for a coin in a vending machine. It can also refer to a position within a series, sequence, or set. For example, you might describe a person’s job as in the slot on an assembly line.
When John Madden was a player and coach for the Raiders in the 1960s, he pioneered a concept now known as the “slot receiver.” He wanted his team to employ a wide receiver who lined up just inside the second wide receiver, catching passes that came from the outside and running patterns from the inside. He saw this as a way to make the offense more effective.
Today, the slot position is occupied by many of the league’s best players. Tyler Boyd, Cooper Kupp, and CeeDee Lamb are just a few of the receivers who have dominated from the slot this season.
In addition to their skills as receivers, slot players must have advanced blocking abilities. They must be able to block (or at least chip) nickelbacks and outside linebackers when the team runs plays designed to the outside. They must also be able to perform a crack back block on defensive ends on running plays that head to the middle of the field.
A slot is a dynamic placeholder that either waits for content (passive) or calls out for it using a scenario (active). Slots work with renderers to deliver content to a page.