Tag Archives: youth football blocking

Are you blocking and tackling during youth football practice?

I am not sure why, but this season my brain keeps saying to me, “football is just blocking and tackling.”  Yes, I know this comes from Lombardi…

Some people try to find things in this game that don’t exist but football is only two things ; blocking and tackling. – Vince Lombardi

In past seasons, I’ve coached more, well talked more.  So far this season, we have been blocking and tackling more in drills. Maybe its because 15 of our 17 youth football players have played in Super Bowls before and our average playing experience level is 3 years.  It is really nice to coach top talent.  What I can’t believe is this is a rec team and not a select team.  The amount of youth football talent is Texas is incredible.

Since we don’t need to teach and coach as much in the past, we’ve added more stations so almost everyone is moving.  No time for horseplay.  We coach with quick bites of info to address mistakes but keep the drills moving at a fast pace.  It is still very early in the season, tomorrow will be our third week and two weeks before our first game.  So we have time to learn our blocking calls and blitz packages.  I must say this is my best hitting, tackling and blocking team in almost 10 years.  We have some great looking talent this year.

I have really kept my drills simple this year using the form and fit drills for both tackling and blocking and our main hitting drill has been variations of the Oklahoma Drill and a blocking drill similar to the Hex knock out blocking drill.  We try to keep these drills compact so the speed is minimal to reduce head impacts.  Our running backs have been doing many walk throughs while the lineman tackle and block.  We are trying to save the RBs for games, so they do a few reps and then off to the lite timing drills.

This week we will lessen the hitting impacts since we have filmed most of our practices and seen who and where players will end up on the depth chart.  I’ve also graded everyone and listed their weaknesses and strengths.  So we can watch for these issues in upcoming scrimmages.

Remember, at the end of the day not a whole lot matters except can your team block and tackle.  I know its maybe not politically correct to say it in today’s safety aware environment but but football is all about hitting.  Make sure you are teaching blocking and tackling so your players will be ready to hit in their first game.

One last thing, I heard this in a movie the other day.  “It’s not about winning or losing but who are we going to scare for our next game.”   So, even if you lose your next game, make sure your next opponents are afraid to play you.

Remember to play for fun and Winning is Funner.

Cheers,
Coach Parker
Keller, Texas / DFW / Fort Worth, TX
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Filed under youth football blocking

COOL Clinic DVD Collection ’96-’10

COOL Mushroom SocietyI just received my COOL Clinic DVD Collection from 1996 to 2010.  COOL stands for Coaches of Offensive Lineman.  This is a society of NFL and college level offensive line coaches that hold an annual clinic just about blocking and offensive line play.

The entire COOL Clinic set includes 98 DVDs.  I reviewed the 2008 Clinc DVDs 2 years and loved the series, especially the session with Rex Ryan.  So I just dropped $400 for the entire collection.  I cant wait to start watching.  Stay tuned as I start posting my thoughts on each Year’s clinic.

If there is anything that I’ve learned as a youth football coach, its your offensive line must know how to block.  Football starts in the trenches.

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Filed under Blocking, Offense, Youth Coaching

Blocking Calls for Offensive Line in Youth Football

I’ve been helping a couple of  Ft Worth area youth football teams this season with their offensive line coaching.  We’ve installed Rule Blocking and a few blocking calls so the boys can adjust at the line of scrimmage.  If you would like to research more about blocking Calls, read Radar Blocking.  For us at the 7-11 age group we are using very simple calls.  I am not going to elaborate on our rules but  I will highlight a few of the calls we make at the line.  We use different names for our calls.  🙂

  1. “Attack” – Blitz – Center will identify a Middle Blitz and adjust blocking based on the LBs
  2. “Yellow” – Help – Lineman will make a call to request double team help
  3. “EMU” – Outside – TE or End Man on Line EMOL will attack outside defender
  4. “Green” – Good –  Lineman is ok and does not need help
  5. “Black” – Dummy Call – Does not mean anything

You can get more complicated and call a cross blocks or folds, just depends on what your age group can handle. 

I hope your season is going well.  Have fun and Winning is funner.

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Filed under Blocking, Offense

Blocking Tips for Youth Football Offensive Lineman

My son is making the transition from QB to tight end this season, so he and I have been focused on blocking.  He was my best blocking back last year when we ran the Single Wing offense, so he’s a hitter.  The offensive line and especially the tight end position blocking assignments are new to him. 

Last night I re-watched the COOL clinic video of the Ohio State offensive line coach’s chalk talk presentation, Dave Cisar’s video Dominating Offensive Line Play and Championship Productions Becoming a Champion Offenive Lineman by Ed Thomas.  I also did a little lite reading of Reed’s, Coaching Youth Football book. 

In no particular order, below are few points that stick with me:

  1. Your body will follow your eyes.  Keep your head up!   Head down and you will go to the ground.
  2. Keep your feet wide and drive.  Do not hit and then stop your feet.
  3. Be quick off the ball.  Do not set back on your heels.
  4. Use your hands.  The use of hands might be the most important skill in blocking.
  5. Eye a specific target, elbow, inside numbers, legs.
  6. Keep your hips low so you can load your hips and drive. 
  7. Engage with your hands on their inside shoulder pads, biceps.  Stay engaged or on their butt!
  8. Keep your balance stay in control.
  9. Stay wide in the hole.  Short choppy steps.
  10. Remember the snap count.  This might be the most important skill!

If you have some other blocking points for youth football players, post them. 

Play for Fun and Winning is Funner!

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Filed under Blocking, Offense