Which Offense for Youth Football?

There are so many football offenses these days to choose from, Spin, Double Wing, Single Wing, I-Formation, Power I, Straight T, Wishbone, Pro Set, and more, but which one works best in youth football?  In our Colorado Pee Wee Tackle football league, there is not one definitive offensive leader.  I have seen everyone run all of the above.  The team that beat us in the playoffs and eventually one our Super Bowl ran a non-option Wishbone with many misdirection plays.  I’ve read many books and presentations on youth football offenses over the last three years and there a few similarities that come up for everyone’s “best” youth offense.

Best Youth Offense Characteristics

  1. Simple but effective blocking schemes
  2. More blockers than defenders at point of attack
  3. Extensive use of misdirection in plays, multiple backs going opposite directions
  4. Use of misdirection fakes in the offense sets up subsequent plays in the offensive series
  5. Offense is simple with 6 to 10 basic plays that compliment each other for series play calling
  6. Passing is not emphasized, pass only to keep them honest
  7. X-Factor – Coaching and Talent

Talent is a huge factor in youth football offense, one or two studs can make a Super Bowl season.  But, the most important characteristic you see with successful offensive teams is not what offense they are using but how they are coached.   Is the team disciplined and organized?  Have they been taught the fundamentals of the game?  Are they running a “real” offense with a published playbook?  And I think the latter, the playbook or offensive system, maybe the biggest success factor in youth offense. 

Coaches, you need to be organized.  Plays drawn up on the back of napkins and run today but gone in tomorrow’s trash will not work in youth football.   You must choose an offense with a published playbook with blocking assignments or develop your own playbook and publish in a Word Processor so you can distribute to your coaching staff to learn and understand.  You must institute an offensive system not 10 individual plays.  You must be consistent and persistent to make a youth offense effective.  Repitition, Repitition and more Repititions.

So bottom line, coaches that are serious about coaching youth football offense and that are organized make the best offense.  Because they will spend the time and money to research what offensive “system” to install and rep it everyday with their players until its perfect.  Perfect practice leads to perfect games which lead to a perfect win. 

With that said, I personally like the following offensive systems for youth football;

  1. The Beast
  2. Double Wing
  3. Single Wing
  4. I Formation & Power I

Why do I like these?  I have playbooks with blocking assignments for each and they have been very successful for many youth teams in the past and present.  I currently run a Double Wing variation called the Spin Offense and The Beast.

Good luck this season.  Play for Fun but Winning is Funner!


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  1. I’ve coached Youth football for around 20 years, I have ran the Double Wing the last 10 years and have been very sucessful. Winning 1 Superbowl and Runner-up 3 other times.
    This year having 13 players (only 19 on team) that never been on a football field before we ran the single wing because of lack of any type of size or lineman. We finished 6-2-1.
    But I have never heard of the Spin or Beast Offense. Will you enlighten me.

    Talmadge Studer

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