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How Von Miller Helped Alex Highsmith Develop His Ghost Move



Steelers OLB Alex Highsmith Von Miller

PITTSBURGH — Von Miller is one of the best pass rushers of this generation. With a deadly first step and shocking power to pair with his speed-rushing ability, Miller still is one of the best pass rushers in the NFL. If there is one signature move of Miller’s it would be his ghost move.

The ghost move is a type of rip and dip that fakes a long arm to cause the blockers to get off-balance and lunge forward. As that happens, the pass rusher can slide underneath the punch and bend around the edge. It is a tough move to master because it requires legitimate power moves as well as great ankle flexibility. Miller has all the tools to do it, however, and it is one of the best pass rush moves in football.

Von Miller created this move, and since its creation, many players have adapted it. Two of those players are on the Steelers T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. Watt long-developed his and personally worked alongside Watt to help him foster that move. However, for Highsmith, it is a far different story.

Highsmith never had the contact that Watt did with Miller. So, it was learning by proxy instead. That proxy became Watt and of course, Miller’s film. Highsmith marveled at the move and added to an expansive repertoire that he has at his expense. Without the creator of the move in Miller, that potent ghost move by Highsmith would not exist.

“Man, there’s so much to his game,” Highsmith said. “Von has so many moves in his repertoire. He used speed-to-power yesterday for a sack and then he just hits the ghost. It’s magic. He’s been doing that since he was in the league.”

Highsmith’s film-watching techniques delved into the ways that Miller won with the ghost move. The key to that was having a significant power portion of his game. Highsmith has worked hard to flesh out that portion of his game over the past few seasons. But the ghost move has only strengthened his skillset with the added ability to hit a potent bull rush.

“I’ve been watching his film,” Highsmith said. “He’s someone that I try to replicate some of my stuff on. You know, he’s one of the best to ever do it.”

Highsmith has the mentorship and film of Watt to watch as well. That does not go unnoticed, but without Miller’s deadly cost move and its creation, maybe the most potent move in Highsmith’s arsenal would not exist. As Miller terrorized the Rams offensive line Thursday night, his ghost move showed up yet again, and it has now permeated out to the rest of the league to players like Highsmith.


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