A narrow notch, groove, or opening, as a keyway in machinery, a slit for a coin in a vending machine, etc. Also: a position in a group, series, or sequence.
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A slot is a position on the field where a wide receiver primarily lines up. A quality slot receiver can give a quarterback a lot of options when running routes because they can line up both inside and outside the defense. The slot receiver usually runs a lot of short routes that are behind the line of scrimmage, which can help them avoid getting tackled by defenders.
In football, a slot receiver is a type of wide receiver that is used mainly on short passes that are made up to five yards past the line of scrimmage. These are the types of passes that are most easily defended by defensive backs, so it’s important for slot receivers to have good route-running skills and great chemistry with their quarterback. They also need to be able to catch the ball with their hands, and they need to have good speed to beat coverage.
Often, when people talk about “slot” in the context of casinos, they mean a specific machine, or group of machines, where the odds of hitting a particular combination are very high. Some of these games keep a percentage of each wager and add it to a progressive jackpot, which can grow to millions of dollars before it is hit by some lucky player. Some slots also have random jackpots, which are triggered by a button or lever. When you hit one of these jackpots, the winnings are huge!
Another meaning of the term “slot” is an authorization to take off or land at a particular airport during a specified time period. This is typically granted by an air traffic controller at very busy airports to prevent repeated delays caused by too many aircraft trying to take off or land at the same time. The word is also used in the digital context to refer to a connection dedicated to a single user on a computer server (e.g., a 4 slot server could host up to four different users at the same time).