Thursday, January 15, 2015

TCU Blitz Package

TCU Blitz Package

This season we are working on on transitioning to a 4-2-5 defense. For a few years now we have been a 3-4 and it has served us well, however, as often happens in high school, our personnel for the near feature dictates that we no longer can run the 3-4


I am a big proponent of fitting a system to a kid and not a kid into a system. Its hard enough to be a high school kid, nevermind a high school football player, so why not put more on myself to fit the system to them, then making them do something that makes it harder to create success.  
We have seen a move to more hybrid kids at our school. We no longer have a big 300 lb nose tackle, but we do have 6 250 lb kids that can do a little work on the line. We dont have the 235 lb LBs anymore, but we do have faster, 22lb kids that can play either MLB or W/s/$ in this system.


When transferring defenses, I believe in always starting to learn from the best, and recent history tells us its this guy....

2014 AFCA Coach of the Year, Gary Patterson.  You cannot read anything on the internet about the 425 without immediately being directed to him. I have read a lot of information so far, and it is all clear and concise in his system. It has been about as much of a smooth transition as one could hope for up to this point, and that is a credit to Patterson's simpleness, and me gaining the information by way of Brophy and Coach Hoover.   

Blitz Package

The easiest thing I have been able to install is the blitz package due to an excellent film I found.  

The Blitz Package

Coverage and Philosophy


Bullets are inside linebacker blitzes.  


Smokes are Safety Blitzes. Lions are Smokes but with an exchange with the End.


Dogs combine the Safety and the Inside LB to the same side. 

Bullets Thunder

Bullets Thunder brings both ILB and a Safety. The Safety must make a COP call to tell his DE that he has the DE in coverage. 

Hopefully this helps you have half the success of Gary Patterson. Any questions, as always, leave in the comment sections, Ill always answer as best I can. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Packaged Play Encyclopedia


This has been a work of mine for a long time now, with several hold ups due to the season, job changes, etc., but it is by far the most comprehensive piece that I have put together, as well as the most fun. I love this stuff, and as I have stated in earlier articles I think this is the future or offensive football...honestly with the amount of time I have used to put this together, I think it is the NOW of offensive football. You will see spread principles, power running principles, wing t principles, and many others all combined together to put the defense at an immediate disadvantage. I cant say who was the first to do this, however, I admire that person. I can say the first time I saw it, and was in awe, was Ole Miss against Pitt in a bowl game 2 years ago, and that is where this project really started. Chris Brown of Smart Football and Grantland put together a piece on the exact drive I am talking about, and you will see it referenced and linked below. 

Before this starts I think I need to put out a few qualifiers:
1) Some people may see this differently. For instance, I think of Inside Zone Read as 2 plays/options, in itself a package, while I am sure there are many that see it as one play, and therefore wouldn't understand the classifications I used to organize this article. 
2) I am a fan of this, I in no way claim to be an expert. All of the writing I do regarding reads and such is my own interpretation (although I think a good one).  I more than welcome comments on this post and quality conversation about any of it. Even further, most of the clips here are of Ole Miss. I am not in the program or in any way connected...I don't know what Hugh Freeze is thinking (HOWEVER, COACH FREEZE IF YOUR ARE READING THIS, FEEL FREE TO TELL ME) 
3) I have used the terminology that I am accustomed to from the staffs I've been on. Feel free to insert your own. 
4) Lastly, I'M A DEFENSIVE GUY FOR GOSH SAKES, cut me some slack!!!

Enjoy the heck out of this coaches, I have putting it together. 


Three Play Packages

So with the evolution of these plays, as you will see further in the article, and as you have already read, combining three or less plays/options together is more or less child's play at this point, but it is a good base and a good place to start. 

Right away we see wing t concepts coupled with pro or spread. Ole Miss used the bucksweep to have a strong perimeter run, combined with a read for the QB and a bubble screen. The formation itself if going to most likely open the run, but if the defense somehow figures out a solid way to play the run(s), they are going to have a very hard time defeating the bubble. 


Here is a second variation of the play, this time using motion to create the 3 man surface to the buck side. 


I like this play because it is a great formation variation of the epitome of packaged plays, zone read with a bubble. The double tight forces more gaps to be covered and opens up the outside for the QB run or the bubble depending on the play of the OLB. 

This one is up for debate in my own mind about what it should be classified as, but in Mike Leach terms, all four guys running the "verts" are running one concept, combined with Inverted Veer make 3. I guess......
This play is definitely determined by a presnap read of 2 high vs 1 high safety. Against Cover 3 you are running verts, against Cover 2 you are most likely getting a 7 man box and running inverted veer giving you technically a 7 on 6 advantage (accounting for the optioned player). 


Again, more bucksweep, but this time, instead of the bubble, you get the second motion man running a swing. It is very hard to keep track of all the movement in the backfield and the swing will open. If you can run this at the high school level its YAC all day on that swing route. 
NOTE** The first motion noted stops pre-snap allowing the second motion to come. 


Here you get a down hill run in Iso, with a mirrored concept in what we would call Okie. Because the Iso block is by the looping guard, it takes time to develop, and I guess actually could be considered a lead draw, but gives time to take a look and see if the concept can be thrown. 


This is a play that Ole Miss runs with a lot of variations. As you will see later, they do a lot with the Inverted Veer, however here, they just make sure they have a ton of blockers for the give....and a fade if the D is lined up in man. 


Lastly for this section is the PEEK MOOSE concept. It is a Y stick, with a variation of draw, and a throw backside.  Coach Brian Flinn of Villanova has variations of this play, and many other teams run it as well. Here are some markups and some film on the variations. 











I start the four play packages with an Ole Miss play. This is the play as diagrammed by Smart Football, that, as I stated earlier, originally peaked my interest in packaged plays. In the bowl game, Ole Miss could not be stopped and I felt made Hugh Freeze look like a genius.  Chris Brown does an excellent job diagramming this and explaining packaged plays here.


In another Ole Miss Play we will see arc motion, creating a pitch option after the inside zone read. That is three plays, in order to add one more element the quarterback also has the option of throwing the hitch. The interior read would be the same, DE for the initial read, OLB or S for the pitch read, and if the C plays the pitch man, the QB has the option to throw to the receiver running the hitch behind it. 


The last play as you will notice, relied completely on post snap reads, whereas the original play in this category relied on all pre-snap reads with the exception of zone read. This play will be just the opposite, as there is one pre-snap read, and the other 3 options rely on post snap reads.  For this play, if the QB was to get a one high or soft corner look or a misalignment to twins, he could immediately throw the bubble screen.  If he does not like the bubble screen, the play can then go in the other direction, with a slice zone read with a hitch as the throwing option. Again, this gives the QB one presnap option coupled with 3 post snap options. 


This play has a similar  theory, as the bubble is there initially, however, rather than a hitch as the post snap throw option, the route has been changed to a fade, most likely due to a two high safety look.  Notice this incorporates the tight end, who is free releasing since the defender over top of him is the read key.  They have also run this play with the tight end staying in the seam rather then getting to the number, again most likely based on a one high look.

Here you get the exact same play, however, with just a few simple changes it presents itself as completely different. You are still given the same elements, Fade/IZ Read/Bubble, but you have a different formation, different variation of IZ read, and a different player running the fade. Same idea, completely different play. 


Same play with a hitch instead of a fade or fly. 


Same play concept, again, different formation and different variation of IZ read. 


With this play, you get a slightly different running play, a different pass concept post snap, and a hitch as a presnap read. If given a soft corner, the QB will throw the hitch. Now on the presnap read as well, if the OLB to the twins side expands to cover down the #2 receiver, or if the OLB on the snap flys to the #2, the QB will hand off the the running back on a lead zone concept. If the OLB does not expand, #2 gets thrown a now route since he is not covered down.


This is one of my favorite plays. I love stick/draw, just as a play alone. I think it gives the QB a great, simple read, and is a great play to rep the hell out of and use as your third down go to. Coach Hoover wrote an article about it here. Chris Brown of course wrote about it as well here, as well as many others. Here Ole Miss combines the stick draw concept out of a three by one formation...but there is no way they are going to waste a play having only 2 CONCEPTS!!! so they add two more, a bubble to the 3x1 side, which accomplishes the same thing as the traditional fade/out that normally accompanies the concept, but gives and extra pass outlet, and a fade, in case the 3x1 formation draws man pressure and the single receiver has the ability to blow away man coverage. So there you have it, Stick/Draw + Fade and Bubble.


As you saw earlier, in what I think is a great integration of wing t principles, bucksweep read was used. Here the use of the H to run the buck (and I can almost guarantee that Auburn has done this at some point and will try to find the film on it) leads to a 4th option, the speed option. The QB reads the unblocked end and if it is a keep read, he now uses the A back as his speed option man. He still has the hitch or sit route as well in case the corner flys up to play the pitch.  This gives a finesse attack to one side of the field, and a strong downhill off-tackle run to the other.  


Here you see the incredibly popular inverted veer being used as 1/2 the package. It is coupled with a bubble screen to one side and a rocket screen to the other. I would guess that the bubble screen is presnap if you get a Cover 2 with inside leverage and no cover down on the #2 receiver. The rocket then would be post snap, dependent upon how an OLB plays the inverted veer. 


BELIEVE IT OR NOT.....OTHER  TEAMS RUN THIS TOO....Here is Oregon, running IZ Read, with a Double Now, thus giving it a Quad Package. 


Lastly for the 4 Play Packages, lets go back to Ole Miss, and yet another variation of the IZ read, combined with a bubble and a hitch. 



Here Ole Miss uses the hitch as a pre-snap read against a soft corner. At the heart of the play, as with most of the plays we have seen it the IZ Read. Using a two back formation, they are able to put the third back in position to be a pitch man, giving the IZ a triple option effect. And as the fifth and last option, if the corner attacks pinches, the QB has the option to throw the bubble screen. That is 5 Plays/Options!!!! in one play call.  You need 13 defenders to have a decent shot at stopping this. 


So that is all. I hope to have given you all a lot of information. I love this stuff and I hope that I did it justice. I have already begun breaking down Oregon 12 and Auburn 13 to see just how much more of this I can compile, but I think this was a good start and I hope everyone gets a ton out of it.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Pigskin Prep- The Definitive Youth Football Training Program


The ultimate guide
to injury prevention, speed development, and strength training for the “14 and under” youth football athlete


Sweat. Smiles.
Cheers. Tears.
Dirty faces. Dirtier uniforms.
Red cheeks. Black and blue bruises.
The thrill of victory. The agony of defeat.
These are all part of what make youth sports such a tremendously unique life experience. 

Within the first 37 words of his book, you get that Coach Ryan Burgess is a coach that "gets it" As a high school football coach, and someone who has spent years around coaches of all levels, you know there are the ones that "get it" and the ones that don't. 

Coach Burgess and his partner in writing the book, Coach King, have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to training, and they have put together a CONCISE, INTERACTIVE, WELL THOUGHT OUT, COMPREHENSIVE training manual. 

For the authors/book's website, click here

A little bit about the authors:

Coach Ryan Burgess is the Director of Football Development at Fitness
Quest 10 in San Diego, California. A highly respected physical preparation
coach, Ryan has been a key figure in the growth of FQ10 since beginning
as an intern in 2006. Recently named one of the “Top 10 Training Facilities”
in the country by Men’s Health, Fitness Quest 10 continues to deliver
on its first class reputation. Under the leadership of gym owner Todd Durkin
and Coach Burgess, Fitness Quest 10 now has athletes represented on more
than half of the teams in the NFL, over 30 different college and junior college
programs, and countless high school and Pop Warner teams throughout San Diego County. Coach Burgess’ true passion is in developing athletes over the long haul, having taken multiple athletes from High School to the college level and beyond. Prior to his arrival in San Diego, Ryan studied at Colorado Sate University, earning a Bachelors of Science Degree with a concentration in Health Promotion, a specialized program that blends traditional classroom courses with internships and hands-on programs. In addition to earning his degree, Coach Burgess was an offensive lineman on the CSU football team under the leadership of legendary coach Sonny Lubick. When not coaching others, Coach Burgess continues to push the envelope in his own quest for high performance, competing in both Strongman and Powerlifting competitions since the fall of 2010. 

Coach Jeff King has been in the fitness profession for over 10 years. With a
bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science from the University of California-
Davis, and a graduate degree in Exercise Physiology from San Diego
State University, Coach King has a very strong scholastic background which
has allowed him to publish his research on “Plyometric Training for the High
School Population” in the National Strength & Conditioning Association’s
Journal of Strength and Conditioning; findings from his work are often
requested by researchers from around the world. In addition to his scholastic
accomplishments, Jeff has accumulated thousands of hours of practical experience training pre and post adolescent children as well as designing comprehensive programs for sporting coaches in multiple disciplines. For the past three years Coach King has utilized his personal and professional experiences in directing the Summer Camps at Fitness Quest 10, overseeing the training for youth athletes in multiple sports ranging in age from 8 to 18. Jeff’s passion is not just improving the athletic ability of young athletes but in sharing valuable lessons that will aid their life development outside the athletic arena. Above all Coach King believes in a systematic approach in training youth athletes resulting in long term success and is committed to helping every child he has the opportunity to lead. 

I have known Coach Burgess for a long time, and long respected what he has personally accomplished as well as the various endeavors he has put forth, most notably as well as his year long "Humanity WOD" endeavor, where he gives tips not only on physical achievement and success, but success as a human being (something all us coaches hope to inspire in our players). 

I have also used some of his training videos for my own blog, as well as workout programs for the offseason, as well as clinics and camps. I highlighted his work on my post about Combine Prep


This is the first time I have seen an endeavor put forth such as this and here are a few reasons why....

1) You are getting a YOUTH FOOTBALL based training program from start to finish
2) The program includes both written and video demonstrations of the exercises to be completed
3) It includes simple, easy to follow training tips, nutrition information, program and training philosophy
4) It is all put into format by esteemed trainers who train NFL PLAYERS on a regular basis but felt the need to transition this to the youth football enthusiast. 


To me, when I see youth football, I still see the old adages of toughening kids up, of running gassers or bear crawls until kids are ready to cry. Maybe this is from misinformation, or maybe it is from a lack of knowledge, or who knows, maybe there are even some sadistic youth coaches out there...but this is the opposite...This is a full program, from start to finish, to make your youth players the best on the field, to "toughen them up" while accomplishing something. This program is not a cakewalk, but it serves a purpose. And I cannot stress this enough.....

IT IS ALREADY COMPLETELY have to do no work but make it happen. 

This sample does not even begin to show the vastness of this work, there are 3 categories of kids, 9 and under, 10-13, and 13+, all with their own training schedule and exercises. 

Day 2
Dynamic Warm-Up
Cooperative-Based Game
Rock & Roll Stretch Windshield Wipers
Sit to Stand
Torso Twists
Arm Circles Hangdowns Balance Reach Line Drills
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
3 each side
5 each side 10 big 10 little 15 seconds

5 each side 15 seconds
4 min
Integrated Flexibility and
Movement Prep
Dirty Dogs
Hip Circles
Mountain Climbers Inchworms
Forward/Reverse Bear Crawls Orangutang’s
3D Skips
3D High Knees
Lateral Shuffles
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
5 each side
5 each side
20 seconds
10 yards
10 yards
10 yards
10 yard round trip 10 yard round trip 10 yards each side
10 min
Speed, Agility, and Quickness
Deceleration: Linear Deceleration: Reverse Deceleration: Lateral Cone Drills
4 4 4 1
5 yards 5 yards 5 yards 2 drills
2 min 2 min 2 min 4 min
Jump Training
Single Leg Broad Jump and Stick
1 1
2 2
5 jumps per leg 5 jumps per leg
2 triple jumps 2 triple jumps
1 min 1 min
2 min 2 min
Single Leg Lateral Jump and Stick
Triple Broad Jump
Triple Lateral Jump
Strength Training Circuit (2 times through)
Squat with Toss and Sprint Deadlift
McGill Sit-Ups
Stationary Lateral Lunges Loaded Carries
2 2 2 2 2
Variable; based on time
2 min 2 min 2 min 2 min 2 min
Energy System Development
Position Based Sprints
10 min
Cool Down and Stretch
Core 4 Stretches
5 min

I have said it a few times and it bears repeating, this is completely comprehensive. There is no work to be done other than put it in action and watch your kids do this work.  

I know I will work closely to the nearest youth football program to put this into effect, and even try to carry it on in our offseason workouts with the high school team.