Tag Archives: coach parker

Staying low while tackling in pee wee football

lw8_89_tackleA friend of mine called me last night.  He said his 12U team is not tackling low.  They are tackling pretty good but some are having trouble breaking down and staying low to make tackles.  We talked about not all tackles will be low since they might be open field pursuit tackles when a player just needs to save a big yardage gain.  He explained that his team is tackling good he just needs some more practice staying low to work on a few players fundamentals and keep everyone fundamentally sound.

I told him we use our tackling bags and with a red tape line around them representing a players belt and have our players break down and tackle below the red line on the tackling bag.  We also do the close quarters SeaHawk angle tackling drill where players are just arms length apart already broken down and one step into a near thigh low shoulder roll tackle. Lastly we do a two line drill where we are close quarters again and one player jumps up and the tackler wraps and holds up the jumped player to make sure we have wrapped up and we also do a grab cloth drill from two lines.  One players turns and acts like a running back and the tackler grabs his jersey “Cloth” and the runner takes off.  This helps us make sure we know we can grab cloth and help will come soon.  Heck grab anything to save the tackle.

I have written an article on form tackling before, you can find it here, Is From Tackling Overrated.  Each and every season, I teach proper mechanics of form tackling, especially the Seakawk Tackling System, but I am big on making tackles not worried about what they look like.  That does not mean I do not like the fundamentals, I just know in most game situations a “true” form tackle is not always able to be applied because the ball carrier has other intentions.  We also teach the Seahawk Pec tackle for open field tackling situations.  Sometimes a high tackle is required or last ditch must move on a “jitter bug” running back.  But I will agree with my friend, staying low, both in tackling and blocking to gain leverage is a basic football fundamental and must be taught and perfected by every player to be successful.

Here are some more drills to stay low….

King Size Sheet Low Board

Coach Casey has a few more videos I like on blocking but this old sheet drill to stay low is perfect for all.  Just use an old king sized sheet as a low pole board drill.

 

Basketball Break Down

I’ve used a similar drill to this drill but used a basketball with youth football players versus a yoga ball with these bigger players.  You can also use a smaller tennis ball and scoop with two hands and then have them tackle a dummy bag.

 

SeaHawk Tackling and Drills

I love the Seahawk Tackling system.  This is very similar to what I was taught in high school.  Plus, I played Rugby a season.  I am very big on the shoulder roll tackles.

 

Low Pad Hits @ 1:23

I have never used this drill but I will this week.  I really like this to get across some muscle memory about hitting low.

 

Staying Low using a Tackle Wheel @:20 @:35

A friend of mine made me two tackle wheels and they are great.  This open tackle drill at 20 and 35 seconds are awesome drills to get your players tackling low.

 

I hope these drills and suggestions help you coach your team to get low during tackling and blocking.  Let me know if you have a few drills that you use to help your team stay low.

Remember to Play For fun and Winning is Funner!

Thanks
Coach Parker
Keller, TX / Fort Worth, Texas
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100 Names for Linebackers on a Youth Football Defense

Rover LinebackerI guess I was a little bored today and started looking at linebacker position names like Mike, Sam and Will.  We’ve all heard of these names for LBs but I decided to dig a little deeper and see what other names have been used over the last 100 years of football.  I made up a few of my own too as to complete the 112 name list of linebackers.

I have tried to separate the names out into the various linebacker responsibilities but don’t hold me at 100% correctness.  You should use this as a tool to come up with your own linebacker names for your youth football team’s defense.

Here we go naming linebackers…..

Mike, Sam and Will

Strong / Field Middle L-backer Weak / Boundary
SLB MLB WLB
Sam Mike BLB
Stub Mack Will
Sara Meg Buck
Strike Mo Wanda
Zack More Whip
Spear Mace Dick
Snake Mickey Bob
Otto Ace Nick
Flacker Moose West
Saw Missle Bear
Frank Ogre Wolf
Fox Dart Barb
Saber Headhunter Beast

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Outside Linebackers and Inside Linebackers

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Left OLB Rt OLB Inside LB
LOLB ROLB ILB
Leo Roy Ted
Jack Charlie Zip
Lee Rebel Zack
Lance Rex Plugger
Lion Rod Ike
Lotto Rush Axe
Lola Ram Bull
Lefty / LT Rhino Pike
Ox Ray Butkus
Owl Rolo Hammer
East Ralph Chuck
Lakeside Arty / RT Charlie
Lynx Ranger Victor

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Hybrid Linebackers

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OLB Def End SS/DB OLB
JLB Rover
Joker Monster
Jack Dagger
Dave Gunner
Ted Stinger
Devil Nickel
Elephant Raider
Dog Moneybacker
Bandit Lobo
Viper Robber
Tiger Star
Ollie Spur
Elle Lurker
Predator Pirate

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This list is over 100 linebacker names and most of them have been actually used by College and NFL football teams in the past.  I hope you enjoyed this list of LB names.  If you have any names that you have used in the past please leave them in the comments below.

Remember to Play for Fun and Winning is Funner!

Coach Parker
Fort Worth, Texas

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Beast Offense Plays – The Base 8 – Best Beast Plays

Here are my Beast Offense Base 8 Plays from my Power Wing Beast Offense Playbook for Youth Football. ages 5-12.  The Base 8 plays are my best Beast Offense plays.  These 8 Beast formation plays should be part of any Beast Offense playbook for pee wee football players.  These 8 power plays have been part of my offensive package since 1994.

All of these plays are from actual game or scrimmage footage of youth football teams that  I coached from 2010 through 2017 at KYA Football in Keller, TX. KYA Football is a very strong rec league in North Texas.  The team ages are 8U through 12U.  Enjoy the videos of the Beast in action.  Beware of the Beast.

Beast Tank

The Beast Tank Power play is the foundational play to the Beast Offense and is 1 play of my “Go To 2” plays that I run with any youth football team no matter what offense we are running that season.  When I need a “for sure” 2 to 3 yards I turn to the Beast Tank.  I am very seldom let down by the Beast Tank play.  This is a great short yardage power play.  Even if you run a traditional single wing UBSW the Beast Power play is a great addition to that offensive scheme.  And if you are a Wedge guy, then you should love the Beast Tank since it really is a flying wedge either right or left.  Check out one of the best youth football plays and my favorite pee wee football plays of all time, The Beast Tank.

 

Beast Wedge “Honey Badger”

The Beast Wedge play is another great play from the Beast formation.  It is the second play in my “Go To 2” plays that I run with any pee wee football team offense.  The Beast Tank and the Beast Wedge are complimentary series plays and should be run in a series combination.  The Beast Wedge will demoralize a little league defensive front.  Plus, when you add in the fake Mouse Sweep a little misdirection is added into the very aggressive power play.

 

Beast Grenade

The Beast Grenade play is another complimentary play to the Beast Tank play.  The Tank play is run just over or off the offensive tackles and the Grenade play is run over the Guards similar to a QB sneak.  Many times, Defenses will over shift to defend the Tank play and the Grenade play is wide open either strong side or weak side.  I like to have my Beast Backs pre-snap read the Grenade hole, to see if they need to cut early on a Beast Tank play.

 

Beast TE Pop Pass “Popeye”

The Beast TE Pop Pass or Beast Popeye is the main passing play from the Beast Offense Base 8 Plays in the Power Wing Beast Offense.  The play looks like a Beast Tank play but the Beast Back takes a one or 2 step drop and throws to the backside TE.  This plays work very nicely in a series of plays to suck up the Defense on power run plays and them hit them with this quick pop pass to the TE in the flats.

 

Beast Wide “Worm So Long” Sweep

The Beast Wide Sweep or Worm So Long is the main Sweep play from the Beast Offense. The blocking backs or sniffer backs move out into 3 power wing alignments and block the Defensive perimeter players allowing the Beast Back to Sweep wider than the Tank hole.  Many times the defensive coordinators do not even notice the blocking backs shifting wide and stay tight to defend the Tank play.

 

Beast Gut Counter “Worm Corky”

The Beast Wide Gut Counter or Worm Corky is the main counter play in the Base 8 Beast Offense plays from the PWBO playbook.  You can also run this play from the Beast Tight formation or Beast Corky.  I use this play to keep the backside Defense honest.  You either hit big or just for a couple of yards.  I run this play about 1 out of every 10 or 15 Beast plays to test the backside Defense, just in case they are asleep.

 

Beast Jumbo Sweep Option Pass

The Beast Jumbo Sweep Option Pass is an advanced play in the Base 8 Beast Offense plays from the PWBO playbook.  The Beast Back should sweep and look for a pass but really looking to back off Defenders for the Sweep run.  Most of the time the Defenders will defend the Trips receivers and if the Beast Back can beat contain then they have a nice Sweep rush.  This Jumbo Sweep is made for a “true” Speedster TB, so if you have one then this play works great.

 

Beast Jumbo Stretch Sweep “Jumbo Stretch”

The last of the Beast Offense Base 8 plays in the PWBO playbook is the Beast Jumbo Stretch Sweep.  The Jumbo Stretch play is a tight sweep play right at the strong side tight end and first blocking back.  The Beast Back will read those two players and not cut out wider than the second blocking back.  This is an inside Sweep play vs a wide to the sideline Sweep.  Many times a natural seam will open up at Stretch Sweep lane.  The plays work well with the Sweep Option Pass play, Trips Passes and the QB Draw up the Gut.

 

This is a quick preview of the The Base 8 Beast Offense plays in my Power Wing Beast Offense Playbook.  If you like what you see check out all the videos on my YouTube Channel or purchase my book here.

Let me know what you think of my Base 8 Beast Plays from my Power Wing Beast Offense Playbook.

Remember, Play for Fun, and Winning is Funner!

~ Coach Parker

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Coaching Youth Football to Lose and Why?

Coaching Youth FootballOver the last 10 years, I have coached three different youth football teams through the 7U to 12U age divisions.  During those many Spring and Fall football tackle seasons, our teams consistently beat a few teams that we played each season as our team aged.  I always think about why our Teams won versus other teams in our Division.  This morning was no exception, since I am planning to begin coaching another 7U/8U team this Fall 2017.  I started writing down the team names we played over the years and why I thought we beat these teams season to season.  Here is a summary of what I thought about this morning….

Why Teams Lost Summary

  1. Son played QB; “Daddy Ball”
  2. Shotgun snaps inconsistent or QB / Center Exchange
  3. Too many pass plays and low completion rate
  4. Play calling strategy; did not run best plays, wanted to be too fancy or pass
  5. Did not focus on Blocking
  6. Defense was a reading Defense, and did not attack Offense

Yes, my two sons have played quarterback over the years but if I had a better QB, my sons played other positions.  As a Coach, you must be able to play the best player at a position, not start your son or someone you like better due to parent politics or a pre-season promise.  You must do what is best for the team, not what is best for you and your family.

Each season, I see so many teams force a shotgun snap because they want to run the Spread or Pistol offense.  If your Center cannot shotgun snap 14/15 times consistently then you will turn over the football at least twice during the football game.  These turnovers will lose games.  I see it in youth football and at the Junior High and High School levels.  You can run these offenses under Center, maybe not as effective but more effective than fumbling the QB / Center exchange.  This area of offense must be focused on and practice at every practice.  Even I get lazy and lose focus on this QB Center exchange and then it bites me in the bootocky.

Look if your team cannot complete more than 50% of your passes then do not focus on the offensive passing game. If you want to focus on your passing game, then play 7on7 and practice there.  But forcing the passing game to learn how to pass for a whole season while you consistently lose more than half your games is no fun for you, your players, parents and fans.  Sorry but many youth football QBs will not start as high school QBs. Running the football at the youth level will increase your chances to win games.  But hey, if you have the legit passing QB, receiver, blocking etc than pass the crap out of the football.  Out of my 20+ season coaching youth football, I’ve seen more teams win by running than passing.

Many coaches, want to over complicate youth football offenses.  I know I do sometimes.  Remember to keep it simple.  Do not force an offense on your talent. Let the Talent tell you what they can do.   If you’re trying to run a fancy offense and getting penalties every series or unable to shotgun snap then maybe that offense is not working for your talent.  If your offense play calling strategy is all over the place and you keep calling pass plays that do not work or Jet Sweeps that are losing big yards, or throwing 2 interceptions a game, maybe you should run that Stud TB down the 5 or 6 hole behind your super large offensive tackle and maybe move to an unbalanced line and just run it down everyone’s throat.  The stats say your averaging 5 yards a carry on that play.  I don’t know how many times, I’ve looked over at my Co-Head coach and said thank god they keep passing and not running #20 down our throats.  But hey, keep passing from a shotgun formation and turning the football over on interceptions, downs or bad snaps and give me the win.  I’ll take it.

It took me a few years to learn to really focus on blocking.  Many youth football coaches focus on the running backs and just tell the lineman just block any man in front of you.  Yes, you can win doing that if you have really good running backs.  But if you do not have tier 1 running backs then you need to learn to block.  You might have a pretty good passing QB, but if you cannot protect him from my 6 very determined pass rushers then it will be a very long day.  If your guards are not blocking the inside gap and letting my A gappers crush your QB then it’s hard to hand off.  Your linemen will usually be 50% or more of your players on your football team.  Coach them up on blocking fundamentals to be the reason you’re the best offense in the league.  Your players and parents will be happy you focused on all players not just your top 5 running backs.

Defense wins Championships.  I see too many coaches running a 5-3 or 4-4 split defense or even running a 6-2 defense but with reading linebackers and reading defensive ends on the edges in tight to the formation with the Corner Backs set back in a cover three with the Free Safety and losing a ton of games.  I see too many “reading” linebacker centric defenses get stomped on by heavy running offenses.  If most of your youth football defensive players are linebackers and defensive backs reading plays then most experienced offensive coordinators will shred your defense for 4 to 5 yards a carry each play.  It has been my experience that youth football players do not read offensive keys, players, plays, formations very well.  These defensive players will wait for the running back to hit them and not attack the offensive player on his key move from the backfield.  Youth football defenses must attack.  I use a 5-3 defense or 5-2 Monster as my pass defense in youth football not my main run defense.  If you have legit linebackers that attack then maybe you can run a successful linebacker centric defense at the youth football level.  Make sure to scout opposing offenses and focus on Defense.  Offense is pretty and wins a few games, but your Defense will get you to the playoffs and maybe a chance in the big show.

I know my opinions are a little brash, but this has been my experience over the last 20+ seasons coaching youth football in Texas and Colorado.  Let me know your thoughts.  I would love to hear your opinions.

Below is why I thought we beat each team consistently over the years…..

Team 1

  1. Coach played his son at QB, who was not a QB
  2. Too many pass plays and low completion rate
  3. Offense was too easy to Defend, not enough variety
  4. Players not assigned to proper positions
  5. Shotgun snaps inconsistent

Team 2

  1. Ran same play that did not work too many times a game
  2. Coach played his son at QB
  3. Too many pass plays and low completion rate
  4. Did not focus on blocking
  5. Did not adjust Defense to Offensive alignments

Team 3

  1. Coach played his son at QB
  2. Ran wrong offense based on team talent
  3. Shotgun snaps inconsistent
  4. Too many pass plays and low completion rate
  5. Offensive play calling strategy suspect

Team 4

  1. Did not Draft/Recruit well; Poor Planning
  2. Switch Offense week to Week
  3. Switched Players around week to week
  4. Did not listen to other Coaches trying to help
  5. Shotgun snaps inconsistent

Team 5

  1. Promised players positions on Team; QB
  2. Did not play better players at QB
  3. Recruited players they liked vs best players
  4. Did not put players in proper positions
  5. Offensive play calling strategy suspect

Team 6

  1. Over complicated offensive shifts pre-snap
  2. Good motivator but lacked tactical focus
  3. Shotgun snaps inconsistent
  4. Did not run best plays, wanted to be too fancy
  5. Did not adjust Defense to counter Offense alignments

Team 7

  1. Ran too many LBs and did not attack on Defense
  2. Relied on only 1 main RB
  3. Did not focus on blocking
  4. Too many coaches / voices
  5. Easy Offense to Defend

Team 8

  1. Coach played his son at QB
  2. Too many pass plays and low completion rate
  3. Did not run his stud RB more
  4. Defense did not attack Offense
  5. Offensive play calling strategy suspect

I hope this will help you understand the dynamics of winning and losing youth football games.

Thanks
Coach Parker
Fort Worth, Texas

 

 

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