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Going for the Fumble on Every Play

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Coach Kyle
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Have any of you ever tried to teach strictly going for fumbles on every play? How did you go about doing that? I think I'm familiar with Dave's method of hitting hard to force a fumble, but I wondered if anyone had a different approach?

Deaths while walking 4,743Deaths from football 12


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gumby_in_co
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I have not, but it will be a point of emphasis this season. We will emphasize ball security on offense. Not sure how to do that in the passing game, but I'll figure something out.

Defensively, first man to the BC is not allowed to go for the ball, but everyone after that MUST go for the ball.

Strip drills, punch drills, scoop and score drills and "high point" for DB's/LBs will be EDD drills. Whose Ball will make a triumphant return. The theme for our defense will be "RELENTLESS". We will attack the ball in the frenzy and not stop until we get it back. Every time the opponent snaps the ball is an opportunity to get the ball back.

Murphy's 44 is a true Cover 3 zone. We will hawk the ball on passing plays. My rule for anyone in coverage is that you may not try to intercept a "well thrown" ball. A 50/50 ball is considered "well thrown". We will bat those down. A "poorly thrown" ball is any ball that the defense has a better chance to get to than the offense and is fair game.

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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ZACH
 ZACH
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I preach 1 man one tackle, I do also stress gang pursuit.  Since seeing "who's ball" we now go for turnovers when ever possible.  

2nd man in drills are very critical to the success of this.  We also teach multiple ways to strip the ball every practice as part of our warm up grids. 

Making the players more aware of causing turnovers creates more in game I find.

I can explain it to you, I can't understand if for you.


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CoachDP
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Part of our success in developing a high turnover ratio was that we added the strip/scoop/score component to every drill.  So instead of having a few specific turnover drills, we were emphasizing the turnover in every drill used by our defense.  

--Dave

 

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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gumby_in_co
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Posted by: @coachdp

Part of our success in developing a high turnover ratio was that we added the strip/scoop/score component to every drill.  So instead of having a few specific turnover drills, we were emphasizing the turnover in every drill used by our defense.  

--Dave

 

That will be part of the plan as well. 

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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Bob Goodman
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Posted by: @coach-kyle

Have any of you ever tried to teach strictly going for fumbles on every play? How did you go about doing that? I think I'm familiar with Dave's method of hitting hard to force a fumble, but I wondered if anyone had a different approach?

When I'm allowed to, I coach fumble production even in 1-on-1 tackles, after the initial contact, using what you might consider wrestling techniques.  I want the tackler to use his elbow on the ball or on the opponent's elbow to pry the ball loose.  The arm you have wrapped around that side, slide the hand on the back toward that side to give that elbow some slack.  Then if the ball's being carried low, use your elbow or forearm in a repeated chopping-down motion on it.  If the ball's being carried high, get your elbow under the opponent's forearm or elbow and swing it upward.


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Coach Kyle
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@bob-goodman @Zach @CoachDP @gumby_in_co

I've been trying to watch some film on this and do some research on this, and I think something just clicked in my mind. Not every situation is a fumble situation. If a player is running for a sweep, and it's do or die, you don't want them going for the ball.

Here's a film of every fumble recovery for a touch down in the 2020 season:

What you'll notice are a couple of situations where the ball gets fumbled 1) QBs fumble a lot when passing 2) Tackler's helmet hits the running back right in the ball 3) Runner is stopped, and someone strips it 4) The Offense messes up a handoff 5) The runner isn't moving quickly, and the defender strips it.

I feel like teaching them to recognize the situations where they should strip the ball might be a great approach. So situations where they should strip the ball would be 1) QB tries to pass 2) we're in their backfield during a handoff 3) Runs up the middle (first person wraps, second person strips) 4) Runs outside where the RB is stopped

What I've been teaching is to never go to the ground. No diving for tackles, and gang tackles. I also teach them to lift and drive, never to go down. If you fall trying to lift and drive, that's fine, it's still a tackle, but ideally we lift and drive them backwards. And if you get a hand on him, you slow him down. Your brothers will come in and help clean it up, and you'll be right behind them. Swarm tackling.

What I've noticed is that this creates situations where we could definitely strip the ball, but we didn't teach enough of that, so it rarely happened. My theory is that if we teach them to swarm, wrap, and yank, then we'll force fumbles, and if we practice those specific situations, we'll be able to react faster and choose the appropriate technique.

Deaths while walking 4,743Deaths from football 12


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Coach Kyle
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@bob-goodman

 

I have noticed that lifting the running back's elbow seems like it's the ONLY method that consistently works. When I played we did stripping drills where we would chase a man down and either punch and pop the ball out or hammer down to strip it. Those sucked. They were completely unrealistic. If someone was running for the endzone, I was just hoping to tackle them, not strip the ball.

Lifting the elbow does something great too. If a player fights the lift, he's almost more likely to force the fumble himself because now he's pushing the ball down and squeezing with the hand. He really needs to use his other hand to secure the ball. I'm thinking about calling the technique Lift and Fish. You're the second defender to the ball. You lift the ball up, and you fish it out.

I'm also thinking about teaching them to do it to their left side always, regardless of where the ball is. I always had a hard time with forcing fumbles as a player because it seemed really difficult to locate the ball in the split second where I needed to tackle someone. However, my left side is the opponent's right side. That means I can just pick that arm to lift and fish, and I'll be correct 90% of the time. Also, I might just teach "attack one arm". This means if I just have them attack a single arm, then the other arm can't assist in holding the ball. Maybe you get lucky and pick the ball carrying arm, maybe not. Either way, it's a 50/50 shot, and now they can't use that arm to protect the ball on the fall.

Deaths while walking 4,743Deaths from football 12


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Coach Kyle
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@bob-goodman

Actually, I'm thinking more about this. If instead of lift and fish... which sounds lame, you grab their arm with both hands and you lift and yank. Think about is like someone is taking a large bedsheet and they're flapping it so that it lays flat on a bed... but 1000x more violent. That violent upward and downward motion is going to make it very hard to hold the ball, especially if it's right at the elbow / forearm. The only muscle you have to keep this from happening is that deltoid, and that's the worst one. They'll probably be lured into pulling down with the lats, and that would make it fall out the front.

Deaths while walking 4,743Deaths from football 12


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CoachDP
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Posted by: @coach-kyle

I feel like teaching them to recognize the situations where they should strip the ball might be a great approach. So situations where they should strip the ball would be 1) QB tries to pass 2) we're in their backfield during a handoff 3) Runs up the middle (first person wraps, second person strips) 4) Runs outside where the RB is stopped

One thing I know for sure is that we never considered "the situations" for creating fumbles; we were simply looking to always get the ball.  If there's a situation to create a fumble, it isn't because it's a running play "up the middle," or the "QB tries to pass" the ball; it's because we see that the ball-carrier is carrying the ball where we can see it.

^ Click here.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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Bob Goodman
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In 1-on-1 angle tackling drills, if the carrier has the ball on the wrong side, I want the tackler to make an exception to our preferred form (head across), and tackle the ball side.  That's also a reminder to the ballcarrier.

This post was modified 3 months ago by Bob Goodman

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CoachDP
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Click here.

In this video, I'll just give you the time markers so you can directly access the fumbles created:

2:50

3:21

3:51

3:55

4:15

4:21

NONE of these were created by recognizing the situation.  They were created by doing what was taught: hit to dislodge the football and then recover it.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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Coach Kyle
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@coachdp

Most of your fumbles came from putting the helmet to the ball... which of course if expressly forbidden in the USA Football Concussion training manual! 🙄 Perhaps I'll just come up with creative wording to achieve what I'm looking for.

Deaths while walking 4,743Deaths from football 12


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CoachDP
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@coach-kyle

We put the helmet to the side.  That's what's taught, regardless of where the ball is.  And as far as what USAF wants/teaches/takes credit for etc. doesn't really matter to me, as I've written for years.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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Bob Goodman
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If you wind up getting your head across the ballcarrier, what actually hits thru the ball is your shoulder.


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