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Position Change

Newish names

ANYONE WATCHING NFL draft coverage has likely stumbled across what seems like a new position, called simply "edge." As sports evolve, so do roles and names of positions. We know what a closer is, but a baseball fan in 1969—when the save became an official stat—didn't have a word for a pitcher who threw the final inning of a victory. A few new ones have emerged in each of the major sports over the last few years.


Old: Relief pitcher


Definition: A Lefthanded One-Out Guy faces the opponent's best southpaw, then, usually, departs.

Example: In 2015 the Cardinals' Randy Choate appeared in 71 games and threw 271/3 innings. That's 1.2 outs per appearance.


Old: Center

New: Rim protector

Definition: A defender who alters shots taken near the basket—sometimes by merely scaring shooters.

Example: The Heat's Hassan Whiteside saved about 2.27 points per game in 2017, according to Fansided's contested-shot stat.


Old: Offensive defenseman

New: Puck mover

Definition: A player who facilitates the exit from his own zone with sharp passes, playing D by driving puck possession.

Example: The Flames'

Dougie Hamilton, who had been on the ice for 612 shots for and only 465 against, through March 9.


Old: Defensive end/outside linebacker

New: Edge

Definition: Defenders who play on the end of the line, regardless of scheme, and get paid to sack the quarterback.

Example: Denver calls Von Miller a linebacker, but he rushes the QB on almost every passing down.