Category Archives: Defensive Positions

Football Coaching Videos on YouTube

Free Football Coaching Videos on YouTube

So I just thought, for all those coaches who don’t know, that YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world behind Google. That means, if you’re looking for free football drills, football technique information, or football x’s and o’s or strategic insight, YouTube is a great resource. Heck, it’s even a great resource for getting an idea on a football video that you may order. Tog (from CoachHuey) posts some great youtube football video content through his Twitter Account. There are a lot of other great football coaches on YouTube who are putting out a ton of videos that can be useful for us as coaches.

Heck… Strong Football by CoachCP… yes, this blog right here, has a channel with 2 videos that you should be looking at! *Shameless Self-Promotion* Sorry, couldn’t help it.

Searching for Coaching Football Videos on Youtube

Searching on YouTube is a little different for us coaches. You have to be specific in what you’re looking for. Nothing is worse then seeing a video named the right way… and it turns out to be a video from the Madden or NCAA Football Video game… and worse yet, it’s the game from 6 years ago so it’s even less realistic than it is today! I will say though, it is quite humourous to hear them speak about some stuff. Mainly because I’m sure they work in the video game, but won’t work for the real world. I mean… I wish I could run the option well and have the most dynamic passing game in the world.

Other Things to Be Careful Of When Searching For Football Videos

Some people who claim to be football coaches don’t know what they’re talking about.  Some I think are new to football coaching and don’t just provide quality information. Now, I’m sure some of you have accused me of this from time to time, and you were probably right about me! But there are some videos on YouTube, although I’m not willing to point them out, w are just way off, or are done probably by that Madden Guy who wants to be named the Defensive Coordinator for the Patriots (aside: A guy once did apply for that position and cited his Madden record… no joke).

Be Specific When Looking For Football Videos

Be specific, but not too specific. The reason I say that is because YouTube depends on the video creater typed in.  Now, YouTube is smart and if something is way off, it will see that people leave the video and drop it down.  But, at the same time, don’t be too specific because very few people who make videos know this aspect of YouTube. So don’t type in “5 step pass patterns out of Red Formation” … because guess what, that’s not going to give you any relevant results.  One, they don’t know your formations. Two, they probably just typed in “I Formation 5 Step Passes” or something a lot simpler. Instead, search for  “I Formation Passes” or something along those lines. Heck, the easiest way to find my videos is by typing “Cover 4 defense” or “Split back Veer”. Yes, you have to sort through some BS, but you’ll know the good stuff when you find it.

However, you can’t be too general either. You can’t say “football drills”. You’ll get way too much stuff. Try “offensive linemen drills” or something like that. If you leave it at “football drills”, you’ll get all that other crap… and maybe even some soccer drills (*gasp!*).

Looking for Non-Free Football Video Information/Reviews

Sometimes, e-commerce stores like Championship Productions will post a clip of their videos on YouTube. If you wanted to get a better idea of what the content is on a video before you buy it, you should see if their is a clip of it on YouTube. Maybe even research the topic for some non-related videos as well, which can help you see if it’s an area of interest before you buy.

Conclusions on Searching For Free Football Coaching Videos on Youtube

Football videos on YouTube is worth your time. You may find a new football drill or some other golden nuggest of information. I strongly encourage you to do a few searches and figure out what you can find. Also, another great source of videos is ChiefPigskin.com.

4-3 Defensive Line Drills For Defeating the Base Block

4-3 Defensive Line Every Day Football Drills

A long time ago… way too long ago… I started writing a post on 4-3 over front defensive line play (click the link to read that first post btw!). I realized it would take way too much time to turn this only into 2 parts. So here’s my first post on defeating one type of block with specific defensive drills. The importance of 4-3 DL play cannot be understated. In that post, I discussed the reads every defensive linemen in this defense needed, whether it was a visual or a pressure key. These reads I took from a clinic talk I heard from the Wisconsin defesnive line coach, and at that point Wisconsion ran a 4-3 Over which spot dropped. They’re primary goal defensively against the pass was to get an excellent pass rush with their front four and take away the immediate throwing lanes of the offense. Hopefully this post can start to shed some light on how you can execute every day defensive line drills taht can do just that. In my prior post, I discuessed stance and starts. Here, I discuss defensive line drills for defeating specific blocks.

Defensive Drills for Beating the Solo Base Blocks

Solo base blocks, like the scoop block and the regular base block, are becoming more rare, in my opinion. However, there are situations where they occur, especially for defensive ends. I think one of my favorite drills is to start with the whole part whole method and focus on the “part”.

Defensive Line Drill: 6 Point Explosion

Line up your whole group and shade the defenders to one side with a partner. The partner should be arms length away. The defender’s toes, knees, and hands should be on the ground. On some movement key (I suggest giving the offense a snap count and have them move the bags on it for this drill if you have a lot of kids, if you have a small number just use a ball) have the defenders explode up and out (at a 45 degree angle), aiming at the side their shaded to on the pad. They should focus on driving with their toes to create greap hip extension. If they aren’t rolling their hips, tell them to shoot their eyes to the sky and their head up as the drive forward with their body. They should get full extension on the pad by driving their hands.

Explain to your kids that this really should be what they feel when they make contact, except that they should keep their feet bacuse their feet should be moving with their body. By isolating this motion, you let kids who are struggling with the hip roll aspect to understand what you want. They should also understand that the hip roll helps them explode into the blocker and displace them initially. This action needs to be violent, and throwing your hands into the blocker in this drill will do that. Some kids naturally just get hands on a blocker, they don’t know that they need to be violent with their hands. If they execute this drill correctly, they should see that. The hand strike is critical for the block destruction phase.

Defensive Line Drills: Block Destruction

How many times do you see a defensive end get the perimeter and not make a play? They may even disengage the blocker. So this is a two part defensive line drill. I believe we as defensive line coaches tend to condition our kids to just want to disengage. That is the first part of this pair of defensive line drills. However, we don’t tell them when, which is what I try to do with the second drill or second part of this defensive line drill. They need to understand that they should disengage after they deystroy the block, after that intial hip explosion and hand strike that they worked on in the 6 point drill above.

I tell my kids that block destruction doesn’t matter if you aren’t in a position to make the tackle. So when my drills for defensive line block destruction, I focus on offensive linemen hand displacement. We need to be active after that initial shock. Sometimes kids are so worried about their rip. How about we knock the hands down after we shock the blocker. What I do is I place the kids on an outside shade on a blocker. They are in a 2 point stance, after taking their 6 inch read step and they’re in their leverage step (taken when the blockers knee comes at you … you step slightly outside with your outside foot to make sure you keep your leverage). The next step is a power step at the inside heel of the linemen. We take that step in this drill, from the 2 point stance, and make contact with the blocker he makes his move. The blocker is instructed to either scoop or base block the defender, and once he does that the defensive linemen strikes. He should step and strike the blocker with both hands. As he does that, he will gain a small amount of seperation on the offensive linemen (coaching point, make sure there is no bend in the elbows here, that will ensure maximum arm length when combined with good knee bend and shoulders over the knee to keep pad level down). As soon as he makes that contact and he feels the offensive linemen displaced, he should begin his push pull technique. It should be one snap motion that is fluid when this is polished. As soon as he finishes the push pull, the blocker’s pads should be perpendicular to the line of scrimmage. The defender at this point should violently slam his forearms on the blocker’s wrists and begin a rip move where he steps with his inside foot outside the blocker. Now he has defeated the block and outleveraged the player at the point of attack.

Block Destruction: Make the Tackle

The final part of the block destruction defensive line drill is to make the tackle. This should be incorperated into as many defensive line drills as possible. After getting better at defeating the block, the defensive linemen should be asked to make a tackle. The ball carrier should be given an angle outside the blocker, and asked to run at half speed at first, then full speed as the kids get the concept. This will ensure success and belief in the technique.

One side note. A lot of defensive coaches want to stress making a tackle behind the line of scrimmage. While I will say that, I am happy if we make the tackle even a little beyond it. The reaction speed of defensive linemen to engage, disengage, and make a tackle is tough, especially at lower levels. If you stress making plays behind the LOS too much, kids will just try to shoot the gap and then when you get mad at them for not using technique, they will think the technique is crap. This leads me to another point, don’t pull the legs out from your technique. Kids will become sloppy and defeat blocks easier in practice using bad technique. Demand perfection on technique. Don’t demand it on things like making the tackle before the ball carrier makes the line of scrimmage, or else when kids fail at that they’ll think the technique, and you as a coach, are failing. In general, for defenisve line drills, remember you care about the technique, and you care about the tackle, but focus on only one aspect at a time.

Defensive Line Drills: Executing The Rip Move with a Towel

I think executing the rip move is something we all stress as coaches, and it appears in many defensive line drills. I like the towel drill. Put it behind the blocker. The defensive linemen should be can be in a 2 or 3 point stance. The blocker should give little resistance. The emphasis of the drill is the long rip move. We all try to stress ripping to the grass and up to the sky. We can get the grass easily with the towel drill. The DL, after making contact, rips to scoop the towel. I, however, ask the kids to release the towel at the end of their rip so it goes behind them and over their head. This forces the rip to go HIGH in the air, an often undercoached aspect but much needed way to force the blocker to disengage his hands completely.

Another small coaching tip on the Rip Towel Drill is the idea that the towel is not completely flat on the ground. Use big towels as well. I like the towel to be raised, like a napkin at a 5 star restaurant before you sit down, so the kid doesn’t have to worry so much about the grabbing of the towel but the action of the rip move. Also, by giving them a toweel that is larger, you give them a better opporunity to grab it if they are off to the left or the right. Kids will focus on grabbing the towel if you tell them too, not as much the technique. By making the towel bigger, they don’t have to worry about grabbing it as much to be successful in the drill. It’s also important to tell them you’re doing the drill to work on the rip move, not on grabbing the towel. I made the mistake of not saying that once and I litterally had a few kids stop the rip movement to pick up the towel. Like … literraly bend over to pickup the towel.

Defensive Line Drills: Push Pull Technique and Thumbs Up with a Towel

I like to use towels in my drills if you haven’t guessed. The next part works on two areas, the push pull technique and how to keep the elbows in and the thumbs up. The defensive linemen starts shaded again on the blocker in a perfect fit position. His hands are already on the offensive linemen, and he’s ready to execute the push pull technique. His elbows are in and his thumbs are up. Have a player (or you yourself) put a towel right over his elbows. On some key, he executes just the push pull aspect. If the towel falls THROUGH THE MIDDLE, that means the elbows worked outside in the push pull action (btw, another coaching point, the DL should be moving the blocker back into the backfield in this drill a couple of steps). This drill enables you force the defensive linemen to keep their thumbs up throughout the whole process of the push pull so they don’t lose power. It also refines the skill and keeps the hands tighter, which allows them to more quickly and efficiently disengage the blockers hands when the time comes.

Defensive Line Drill Conclusions

I hope to continue this series on defensive line drills for the 4-3 defense over time for each block type. Hopefully I can cover 3 or 4 defensive line drills in each post. It’s hard to do this level of detail for each block and each one of the many defensive line drills in a blog… so maybe I will try to do some video. I hope this provides the necessary detail for a few drills. I also didn’t copy edit this yet… (I’m writing it on my blog while I’m away from home on an iPad) so please forgive me for misspellings.

I would like to honestly say that Chief Pigskin has some great drill videos. You should take a look. Also, if you’re interested in other position drills, like offensive line drills or running back drills, continue to read Strong Football. Finally, check out these every day football blocking drills.

Cover 4 versus the 2 x 2 Spread Offense Pass

Cover 4 versus the 2×2 Spread Offense – Football Coaching Video

Cover 4 is a great way to defend the 2×2 Spread Offense passing game. It allows you to keep a six man box and defend 4 verticals “right out of the box”. For more information on the basics of the cover 4 defense, and it’s slight variation in 2 Read or otherwise known as Cover Blue by TCU fanatics, check out the football coaching video below.

Cover 4 / Quarters Coverage Information Available In This Video

You’ll discover unique information on running the cover 4 defense. This will detail the responsibilities of the cornerback in cover 4 and also the safety’s responsibilities in cover 4. In addition to this, you will learn some of the variations of cover 4, including 2 read, and how leverage is critical for this formation so it can adequately defeat the run and passing game from the spread offense. You’ll learn some of the strengths of cover 4 and the weaknesses of this quarters coverage versus spread 2×2 sets. Overall, this video offers you a basic chalk talk on the main uses of cover 4 in defending the pass against the 2×2 spread offense.

BTW, if you like these videos, check out ChiefPigskin because there are a bunch of great videos!

Defensive Gap Exchange

Gap Exchange between Defensive Linemen, Linebackers, and Safeties

Gap exchange in defensive football occurs between defensive linemen, linebackers and safeties is a critical element for many over fronts and under fronts.

Gap Exchange: Block Down Step Down

The basic gap exchange concept begins at the defensive linemen level, where the defensive linemen responds to a down block by an offensive linemen or tight end. The linemen is likely taught the theory of block down step down, where if the linemen blocks inside he must step inside, disrupt said linemens path, and spill kickout blocks.

The Will Linebacker and the Defensive End in the Under perform a Gap Exchange

The defensive end must keep the tackle off the linebacker by pushing him, and the will must come up quickly to G gap.

The linemen, given the block down step down rule, cannot play his original gap. In essense, he is playing his immediate inside gap. He needs to also focus on getting hands on the blocker who stepped inside while keeping his shoulders square. The defensive linemen simply needs to give a push with one hand, enough to keep the linemen off the playside linebacker or knock his path on his way to a backside linebacker. The defensive linemen, be it end or tackle, must focus, at this point in the play, at keeping his shoulders square. Turning his shoulders this close or on the defense’s side of the line of scrimmage will make it easy for another linemen to log him or, depending on the play, to get around him completely without making the blocker take a better pull path.

Gap Exchange: Open / Closed Window

Inside Gap Exchange between Mike and 5 technique End in Under Front

The End and Mike perform an Inside Gap Exchange, in these cases the defensive end must disrupt the offensive lineman's path

The linebacker needs to read the open or closed window. This should be an easy read as the linebacker flows to his gap. An open window essentially means that the gap he is assigned to his open. A closed window means the gap is blocked and the runningback will not see that hole.

Why is this important to gap exchange principles? As the linebacker reads his hole, if for some reason the defensive linemen is in his gap (he got washed down, or even a called stunt—which means a predetermined gap exchange), then the linebacker needs to work one outside gap, or to the next open gap and press the line of scrimmage while keeping his shoulders square. By pressing the line of scrimmage right away, this causes problems for offensive plays like power where the kickout and wrapping pull blocker occur quickly.

Gap Exchange: Secondary Run Support

Sam Linebacker and Safety Gap Exchange

The Sam Linebacker Follows Block Down Step Down Rules, Safety Reads Him and EMOLOS and Comes Up to D Gap

In many cases, a safety or even a corner, depending on the defense and the formation, may be called upon to gap exchange with a defensive end or EMOLOS. This is common in the Under front, where the Sam linebacker, lined up in a 9 technique outside the offensive tight end, must follow block down step down principles. In this case, the safety must be ready to come up quickly and exchange gap responsibilities with the Sam linebacker.

Gap Exchange – Conclusion

Overall, gap exchange is a good way for a defense to take advantage of the spill technique and use the sideline and team speed to its advantage. If the team has good speed and the front 7 have great hip explosion to help execute some of the technique (wrong arming or spilling), then this can be a great asset for undersized defenses.

P.S., make sure you check out Chiefpigskins offensive line videos!

Backside Safety Play in Cover 4 or Quarters Coverage versus Play Action and the Running Game

Deuce @ Football is Life

Deuce runs an excellent blog and this may not be his only appearance on the top 10 blog posts of the year. He does an excellent job of detailing the 4-2-5 defense in general.

Reviewing How Safety Play in Quarters Coverage versus Running Plays and Play Action Passes

This blog post details how the backside safety in a quarters scheme should play the running game and play action. While he uses the 4-3 defense in his examples, this can be applied to other defenses using a quarters scheme. While cover 4 and its variants offer terrific run support, the big play weaknesses scare many coaches away from it. Deuce does a terrific job detailing the intricacies of backside safety play in cover 4, offering some great insight on this important aspect of cover 4/quarters based schemes.

Click here to read Deuce’s post on backside safety play in quarters coverage schemes. You can follow Deuce’s twitter by clicking here!

P.S.

Chiefpigskin’s still rolling out some great free videos.
Looking for plays that beat the backside safety? Check out this play action pass concept from the Vikings.

4-3 Defensive Line Play

4-3 Defensive Line Play Skills and Reads

The next part in the series is available here: 4-3 Defensive Line Drills.

Perhaps the most critical component of the 4-3 is the defensive line. As with any defense, if you can create pressure with your defensive linemen, your chances of success increase tremendously. At a clinic in Chicago, I had the pleasure of hearing Wisconsin’s DL coach, Charlie Partridge. Talk about a technician. Wisconsin’s DL is inspiring, and while this past season they had JJ Watt, they routinely have exceptional players.

 
Wisconsin is, by definition, a 4-3 Over front defense. They like to play in that front, and they spot drop. They’ll play Cover 2, Cover 3, and Cover 4, but they definitely are a spot drop team. Their goal defensively is to create pressure with the front four and take away the immediate passing lanes of the offense. By doing this, their kids can play fast and if they can create that pressure, they have a chance to create turnovers.

Defensive Line Reads

I think both defensive linemen and offensive linemen need to incorporate some stance and start drills every day. For defense, this means working off a football every day for their get off. Personally, I feel they need to have their eyes on the football, and not on the offensive linemen, because the defensive line is already at a slight disadvantage if they key the offensive linemen’s knee for get off. Upon the snap of the football, the eyes need to identify the knee of their target. The knee of the offensive linemen will quickly give the defensive linemen crucial information about the direction of the play and the type of play. If the knee opens towards you, you know that you are being blocked by at least him. If you feel a great deal of pressure on your side or hip, you know you have a combo block. If you feel one hand’s worth of pressure, you know you have some kind of zone scheme. The next reaction to the knee is identifying a down block. If the knee turns inside and you can’t see it, then you need to step down. If you feel pressure, you are being down blocked by the adjacent linemen. If you feel no pressure, you need to react based on your option rules. If you get straight knee plus extension, you likely have a pass read.

Defenive Line Reactions

Now, after making your quick read, you must react. You need to get your first step in the ground immediately. It needs to gain six inches forward. As your foot hits the ground, you need to begin getting extension with the hands. By the time your second step hits the ground, your hands need to make contact and be working towards full extension on the offensive blocker. Thumbs should be up with the elbows inside. The hands should be punching the offensive linemen, and if the OL win’s inside shoulder pad position, the defensive linemen needs to quickly use his hands and reestablish inside position on the offensive player. If the offensive linemen that the defensive lineman is shaded over starts working away from him, either by attempting to rip through or work away from the shaded alignment, he need to forcefully displace the offensive linemen without getting over extended. This takes time, however, by displacing a offensive linemen as he works away from the defensive linemen, he is taken off his coarse to the next down linemen or linebacker.

Defenive Line Escape and Push Pull Technique

After the defensive linemen takes an explosive and quick first step, reads the knee, and gets extension on the offensive linemen, they need to begin turning their shoulders to behind the escape process. The technique I prefer is the Push-Pull technique. Essentially, the defensive linemen wants to get full extension with his gapside arm and PULL with the other hand. The pull technique cannot be under estimated. A coaching point to focus on is making sure feet continue moving. At this point, a lot of players stop moving their feet, or lose their balance as they lose focus, and the offensive linemen will attempt to bury them or pancake them at this point.

Immediately following a successful push pull technique where the offensive linemen’s shoulders are no longer parallel to the LOS, the defensive linemen should rip or swim over the OL, or pull them to their pocket, depending on their place in the LOS and the ball carrier’s location. Pulling the offensive linemen to the pocket involves violently taking the OL’s shoulder pads from a high position to a low position on the DL’s non-shade side hip. He can then rip or swim if the OL is still holding at this point.

The obvious next step here is to make the play. You need to communicate to the defensive line that even if they don’t make the tackle, they need to pursue the ball carrier. This closes cut back lanes and the defender can be rewarded with a loose ball or a relatively easy tackle.
Part II of defensive line play will detail everyday drills to accomplish these critical techniques.

F.I.S.T. Offensive Line Camp

Coach Kevin Sabo, offensive line coach at Fenton HS in Illinois, is running this offensive line camp. Coach Sabo is a great guy and coach and has always focused on the details. I strongly recommend checking out the football linemen camp, and you can see the flyer by clicking here. You can follow the camp’s twitter by clicking here as well. The dates are May 15, 18, 21 at DuPage Training Academy. I will provide you all with more information as it comes available.

Coach CP

Analyzing Game Film from a Defensive Perspective

Overall, I feel looking at film from a defensive perspective takes considerable time and effort. Remember, this is probably for young coaches who have not learned how to watch film or analyze it. You head coaches or DC’s out there probably know far more than this and have a style that works for you (that’s why your in charge and I’m not!). So this is for those coaches who want some help in this field, and for whatever reason can’t find it somewhere.

You need to first ask yourself when you pop in that film, where do I stop? There needs to be an end point somewhere. Or you’ll watch film forever, rather than preparing from it.

The first year I was in charge of scouting offenses at the varsity level, I made sure I knew all their plays, when and where they liked to call them, and why they called such play.

It was worthless.

We couldn’t stop anyone on defense, and I blame a lot of it on myself. When I look back on it, I would force myself to do the following things.

1) Prepare for their best plays, and their best plays alone
2) Don’t be overly specific with tendencies, only chart run pass and then to the boundrary, middle, or field.
3) Understand who their top 2 playmakers are, and how they utilize those players and when.
4) Look for tells, but only the truly obvious ones. At the high school level, if you can barely notice a tell, the kids likely won’t.
5) What do they do with motion? Usually, offenses are lazy with it and don’t utilize that facet of their game well.
6) Understand the tendencies, but don’t over analyze them. Their gameplan can be completely different for you and your strengths (or your weaknesses).

So, when I pop in the film the first time, I first ask myself, what is the offense trying to accomplish. Unlike offense, I watched the whole film one time through. Offensive gameplans usually aren’t very reactive, even the “check with coach” style offenses. They use formations to get what they want, even if they say they’re taking what the defense gives them. This is a matter of opinion, some coaches would argue the very opposite with me for quite a while. Make up your own mind in this regard.

When I watch the offense the whole time through, I try to figure out what their game plan was. What do they like to do? How do they utilize their playmakers? Do they get them in space? Do they have athletes and how do those athletes make plays? From the best coaches to the worst, almost every coach tries to give the playmaker the football. It’s just a matter of how often and how they utlize other players to make that player stand out more. The next question I ask myself is if their is a method behind their madness. I feel a lot of average offensive cooridinator’s don’t understand the purpose behind their playcalling. They can get players in space and maybe out athlete you, but usually you can keep these coordinator’s best player’s relatively contained, even with somewhat worse athletes. If I feel the offensive coordinator will ignore options in other places and force the ball to his playmaker, I will be a little more aggressive in defending said player, and I may be willing to give up some plays on the other side of the field.

For instance, let’s say they have a stud slot receiver/scat back type. He’s shifty with good ball carrier vision. If the o-coordinator forces the ball to that player, no matter what his position, I will adjust my defense to defend said player. Once the o-coordinator proves to me that he can adjust, I will adjust more evenly.

If the o-coordinator shows me this on film, then I need to be more careful and spread my defense a little thinner across the field. The better o-coordinator’s utilize their system wisely. If I take something away, they should grab somewhere else. So, when watching film, I look for this. Does the offensive cooridantor attack the weaknesses of a defense? And when that defense adjusts, does he find the next weakness? Does he like to wait on this, or does he pounce on it right away?

So these are the things I’m thinking about the first time I pop in the film.

The second time I look at the film I try to break it down. This is where I fell apart the first time through. Understand that so many factors can effect playcalling. There are simply too many variables, and I cannot definitevely say that these tendencies will hold true unless I’ve versed this offensive coordinator several times already in the past and he’s a stickler.

So how do I break down film? I right down their the yard line, down and distance,hash, formation, and play, and result. I may keep notes on who gets the ball if they really force it to their playmaker, so that way I can see if they’ll at least spread the wealth.

Now, that’s a lot of information to keep. Too bad most of it is worthless. But it’s worth doing because you need all of this information for different areas. Just don’t use it all for tendencies.

I write down the specific play because I need to use this for the scout team. I simply tally up the number of times plays are ran, keeping in mind game conditions (score, yardline, ect) and try to put together their best plays. These will be prevented to the scout team offense and used in our defensive gameplan (top plays to stop by formation). I track the formation to see what their favorite plays are out of those formations. I also tally the top plays out of these formations. A lot of play callers simply use formations and plays together, not as seperate entities, which they should be. If they make this fatal mistake, we can be in a safe defense for pretty much everything based on formation.

The only thing I really use for tendencies then, is the down and distance and whether it was a run or pass and what part of the field it went to. Anything more than that (specific plays, ect…) will be statistically insiginficant (meaning the margin of error is too high). Even the way I do it will likely be statistically insignificant. However, the margin of error, nonetheless, will be much less.

I may also look at the hashes from a purely directional stand point if I feel the OC over utlizes this. Do they only like to run to the right side? Once their on the right hash, will they simply run a sweep so they can run to the right side some more? They will probably run inside too so they can keep going that way, in order to stay away from the 12th defender (that pesky sideline).

From here, I watch the film some more. I again ask myself, what is the OC trying to do? Is he force feeding the ball into his RB or QB’s hands? Is he trying to play games with my outside linebackers by tying a run play with a bubble screen? Does he want to force me to cover all of his wide receivers? Or does he want to pound the rock until we fall asleep so he can throw it deep?

I feel if I answer it the same way again, I know the offensive cooridinator. If I am still struggling, I will watch the film again.

Overall, don’t get bogged down in the statistics. Take away what they do best and the most often. Force them to be uncomfortable.

The most important rules I’d say for implementing your analysis…

1) Don’t throw away your defense for a “good” offense. Adapt your defense and put them in positions to succeed. Do NOT change your defense every week. Prepare for it in summer camp and have an answer then. This means making scouting reports based off of last years film in the off-season.

2) Be confident in yourself and your opponent’s abilities. Maybe they do force feed the ball to the runningback. But that’s probably because he’s really flipping good. So understand it’s okay to overplay him a little bit.

3) Don’t give the kids answers for everything, but do have them in your call sheet. If they surpisingly start running Gun QB Iso with their slow QB and they get 5 yards a crack, you better have some kind of A gap play that can take that away.

4) Don’t focus on the statistics. They lie … all the fricken time. Know what your opponent is trying to do, but don’t buy into the numbers so much. It will eventually bite you.

5) Understand what they want to do. It’s your best chance. If you take away their running game and they run Iso and Power all day, and you take that away, expect them to pass only so they can come back to running power and iso.

This has worked for me fairly well. I’m still learning, and I’d love to hear your tips.