call an audible

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call an audible

1. In American football, to call out a different play at the line of scrimmage just before the ball is put into play, typically in response to some action taken by the opposing team. (An "audible" is a play changed in this manner.) The quarterback called an audible after seeing how the defense had lined up.
2. By extension, to change one's decision or course of action in response to changing or previously unforeseen factors. I planned to take that route, but there's too much traffic now. I think I have to call an audible and take the highway instead.
See also: call
References in periodicals archive ?
The word "Omaha" gets tossed around so much, it sounds like Peyton Manning calling an audible.
In recent weeks, ABC, NBC and Fox have cut back on the number of episodes in initial orders for new series--the TV equivalent of calling an audible that is likely to shake up the order patterns for next season's development crop.
In Bad Lip Reading's version of Brady calling an audible, the quarterback instead informs his offense, "I found Fido, you guys."
Some day you may be a pro quarterback coming up to the line, spotting an opportunity and calling an audible. Maybe you'll scramble to evade a tackler when your lineman misses a block; you'll run left, spot an open receiver and throw back to the right off the wrong foot while running to evade one of those cat-quick linebackers.
Calling an audible works if you're playing football and if your name is Peyton Manning - and even he throws an interception now and then.