Coaches, How do you teach your backs...( tb,hb,fb,wb,...etc) to hit the holes full speed and protect the ball? It seemed like we didn't get the point across to our kids that every play is a chance to help your team with maximum effort....Do you drill this or do coach this up during skells and team time? We didn't have a ton of great blocking but our guys were good at first contact, but our backs never exploded the way we'd hoped. Any suggestions?
I don't know about your situation, but we always have a ton of backs so we simply fire them and move them down the depth chart. They learn real quick that if they want to get on the field, they don't fumble and they play with courage. It gives everyone a chance and we always end up with 3 or 4 good kids we can run the ball with so we always have fresh legs. Competition will always bring out the players.
Every Day Drills Coach. Every day run the boys through a gauntlett or some sort of drill where they will have to control the ball and explode through a whole. Repetion is the mother of all learning. I teach children as well as coach and you would be amazed at how natural it becomes when they do it on a consistant basis. take about 5 minutes a day maybe even ten and have them run it again and again and again. I think you will find that it becomes second nature to them.
I agree that a having your backs run through some type of reach and strip drill really helps. Inside drill, where our focus is solely on running the ball inside is also a great time for them to learn to focus on taking care of the football. Outside of a few pushups, I'll sometimes put in place a rule for a player who's having a hard time hanging on to the ball that whenever he has a football in his hands during practice, any coach is allowed to sneak up on him and punch the ball out. If the coach is successful, the player either pushes or runs a goalpost. If the player doesn't cough it up, the coach must push or run. It's a lot of fun and it really seems to reinforce the importance of always keeping the ball tucked, even when you don't see contact coming.
Dave Hartman CYFL Coach
"It's not the will to win that matters - everyone has that. It's the will to prepare to win that matters."
Thank you all for your input, I made it my personal mission to not have fumbles or bad snaps last season.....We were very successful at both...One fumbled snap on a rainy day, all season...also we only had two fumbles all season. The kids felt just strongly as we did about giving the football away. Last year was my first working with skilled postions, thankfully this is youth football and I didn't have to teach them complicated techniques or skills, this season I plan on installing some kind of option play to open up our Offense......when the holes or lanes are open I want them to take advantage of them. Thanks again for your time.