Colorado Youth Football Coaching Clinic

I just got back from the Colorado Youth Football Coaching Clinic hosted by our league.  I was very impressed with the clinic.  We spent two hours outside learning position drills and 2 hours of classroom.  Here are a few tidbits I picked at the youth football coaches clinic:

Defensive Line

  1. When you call slant, line the d-line up on the O-lineman not in the gap, that way you take up two blockers when you slant.
  2. For the D-End or tackle to defend against a trap block meet the block with the inside forearm and then punch the chest bone with the other hand then reset back into the gap or area.
  3. If your Defensive lineman is losing a double team, have him grab the jerseys of the two blockers and pull them down on top of him, this way they can’t attack the Linebackers. (I don’t like grabbing / holding the defensiveman but he should try to bring them both down in some fashion)
  4. When the defensive linemen swim through a double team have them elbow the blockers in the back as he pushes past.  (I don’t like the elbow but he should push the player as he pushes past.)


  1. Always warm-up your Linebackers with sprints, shuffles, cones etc. 
  2. Eyes should always be up looking for ball
  3. Always finish drills with a form tackle in thud mode.  Do not let them walk to end of line.  Have a strong finish.
  4. Middle Linebacker should key tailback (key back) and mirror steps.
  5. If counter play, LB should track back steps and not run down the line otherwise he will get caught inside traffic.
  6. 99% of time, play will run toward the pulling guards pull route.

Offensive Linemen

  1. Offensive lineman are the smartest players on the field.
  2. Offensive Linemen should be the baddest and most determined players on the field.
  3. Play GEL – Get Off, Engage, and use leverage.
  4. Use the mirror drill for pass blocking, two line shuffle right and left.
  5. Use the same mirror drill set up but do punches.
  6. QB must also make someone miss on a pass, not every player can be blocked all the time.
  7. O-Lineman pass blocking should pretend a camera is on their butts and the camera should always be pointing at QB

Hope these help.

Play for FUN and Winning is FUNNER!

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  1. I’m sorry that coaching clinic was in Colorado because some of those “Tips” are flat out illegal and being a coach in Colorado makes me ashamed someone is teaching that. Having the lineman grab the jerseys and pull them down is called defensive holding. Elbowing in the back as you move past is really a classy move as well. The point of youth football is to teach skills but more importantly to teach sportsmanship that will serve them on the field and in life as well. Keep that in mind with some of these so called tips.

  2. Yes I do not agree with defensive holding or the elbow move but I have seen worse.

    I have recieved several emails about this post. It was one station at the clinic out of many. Like in everything, it is up to us as coaches to filter the proper techniques to teach our players.

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