One Formation Football


Today we are going to talk about One Formation Football.  This does not mean staying in one formation the entire year or the entire game, but getting your kids to see pictures clearly and understand assignments by making things simple.  The number one mistake coaches at younger levels make is they confuse kids with multiple assignments and changing pictures.  I often hear coaches say "our kids cant do this" or "we don't understand assignments."  But immediately after saying that they change the assignment or the formation or the play.  If you want your kids to master certain techniques within a scheme then keep it simple.  Changing rules or assignments every other play causes confusion which leads to the ever popular coaching phrase "block somebody!!!"  The same is true when it comes to formations.  If you constantly change formations then you are constantly changing the picture your kids are looking at.

If a picture is "Worth A Thousand Words" then in my opinion that's a pretty powerful picture.  If that saying is true then in football terms how crucial is it to get your kids to understand the picture they are seeing? If you stay in one formation for a series or two or three series you have a chance to keep the picture clear and consistent.  If the picture is clear then you have a chance to teach your players the assignments they need to execute with more clarity.  When you can rep 4 or 5 plays vs. the exact same look you have a chance to achieve mastery.  When the defense changes every time you run those 4 or 5 plays now that creates confusion.  Let's be honest, at the lower levels of football when you line up in a formation the defense usually only lines up 1 or 2 different ways.  If you line up in 15 formations then they technically may line up 30 different ways.  If you want consistency with technique and execution then keep your assignments simple and keep the defense you work against simple. Now instead of yelling "block somebody" you might actually be able to tell your kids who to block. 

Multiple Options to Attack
One of my favorite formations is 2 Back 20 personnel Twins Open.  This set gives you power run game, option run game, ability to get 3 routes to a side, and the ability to isolate a stud receiver.  If I had one set to choose to play football out of this would be it.  I can attack inside and outside in run game.  I can attack coverages horizontally and vertically. I can max protect my QB if I need to.  I can get 5 receivers in a route if I want to.  This set for me gives me every answer I need to effectively move the football.  It also gives me a chance to play at a faster tempo if I stay in this set for an entire series.  But ultimately what it does is it gives me a clear picture of the defense I want to attack.  I will usually only see 2 or 3 different looks in this formation and sometimes I will see the same look all game.  When it comes time to practice we can rep the things we want to attack with clarity and confidence knowing the picture we will see.  Your lineman will understand their run blocks and protections easier.  Your QB and WRS will have simpler coverage structures to understand.  And most important your Offensive Coordinator can feel confident executing a simple game plan.

It's not about the types of plays you run, it's how you run those plays.  It's about getting your kids to understand the game plan and their assignments. It gets down to simplifying what you do and creating stress on the defense.  Play to your strengths and attack their weaknesses.  


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