Coaching Football: Part 4 - Defense

Defense wins championships! It's true for all team sports, especially football. Do you have a championship caliber defense? Is your team shutting down offenses week in and week out? If there are gaps on your defense, incorporating the following tips can leave offenses struggling to produce.

Blitzing

It's one of my favorite aspects of the game, and when used correctly, it can be the most disruptive component of your defense. Blitzing usually refers to attacking the pass with an extra defender but additional rushers can be utilized in stopping the run as well. It is not ideal to blitz every down or too often because the offense will learn to adjust quickly.

Formations

It's important to show the offense a number of different looks in order to confuse the blocking assignments and free up defenders. Different formations also prevent the offense from anticipating the actions of the defenders, thus making it more difficult to execute their plays.

Gang Tackle

Coach your athletes to pursue the ball and continue playing until they hear the whistle. Just because a defender has a ball carrier bottled up does not mean that the play is over. Multiple tacklers weighing in on a single offensive players can wear out the offense as the game progresses.

Force Turnovers

Nothing gets a defense more excited than a turnover. Fumbles and interceptions are sure to have your defense excited about being on the field. Teach your athletes to go for the ball when appropriate. Have your players with good ball skills attack the passes and anticipate throws in order to maximize the possibility for turnovers.

Form Tackling

A defense that tackles well poses a huge threat to any offense.

It may take some time in turn beginning, but focusing on proper tackling can keep the defense off the field and prevent talented ball carriers from continuing to run after contact. Your defense will spend limited time on the field if they learn how to tackle well.

The defense has such a multitude of options when it comes to stopping the offense. Find out what works with your team through scouting and trial and error.

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