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[Sticky] Looking for info or input on the 4-3 D. Pros/Cons, etc...  

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Coach Correa
(@coach-correa)
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Joined: 5 years ago
Posts: 1581
Head Coach
August 28, 2018 5:50 pm  

I think the 4-3 can play at youth if you go with 3 coverages 4 to 5 blitzes and 2 dlm alignments. How can you do this simply bye running 4-3 stack and teach plug overlap and scrape principals constantly and if you want to get fancy you can walk the Sam or Will down like my Man Don Brown does with Michagain.  If i ever move up to HS ranks it will be 3-4 or 4-3 which i'm pretty sure are interchangeable once your kids understand fits and style of play you want with interior weather thats 1 gap attack or true 2 gap the modern version.

Head Coach Tito Correa New Britain Raiders 14-U


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blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
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Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 847
August 28, 2018 7:28 pm  

My experience was less than spectacular with the 4-3.  Admittedly, it may have had to do with the presentation as much as player ability.  However, as it happened, the defense was much improved Dropping that Strong Safety down to OSLB and Going 4-4.  I've had Good Success with Jacks 6-3 and Morphing the 4-4 to a 4-2-5.  At least with 6th grade and under, I see a great benefit to 8 in the box.  I spent a few years going Odd front as well.  To your point, I agree, if it "clicks" for you then run with it.  Perhaps the 4-3 just doesn't click for me as the other defenses do. 

I think the "clicking" is really what it is for us as coaches.  I grew up playing DT and DE in a 5-2 (the old school, stand-up, "contain-or-be-killed" style of DE) and my senior year we switched to a 4-4 that still contained everything.  Mentally, I get containing and I know how to teach the technique... yet I still find odd fronts and trying to teach DEs how to properly contain to be a lot harder to coach, especially with young kids.  DEs either want to be too aggressive/take a bad angle and give up contain or they play too soft and then they get kicked out off tackle.  Then if you 2 gap inside, you have to teach the DL and LBs how to fit off that.  It's a lot more complicated than people give it credit for.

Meanwhile, in an even front where everybody spills kick outs and stuff... you don't need to worry about contain if you're on the DL.  Tee off on the OL across from you, then tee off on the first man coming to your gap and ruin that guy's day.  If you're a LB, you just key whatever you're keying and scrape until you find an open window, then run through that to get to the ball.  If you're force, you key the EMOL for run/pass and keep your outside arm free so you can turn runs back inside.  It's the simplest thing on earth... to me, anyways.


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Dusty Ol Fart
(@youth-coach)
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Illinois
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August 29, 2018 3:35 am  

Just a point of emphasis at least from my experience.  B&T Mentions Contain, most youth teams are Sweep and Off Tackle by nature.  Far less Defensive traffic to contend with.  I suggest that how you "Set The Edge" with Sweep in mind makes a Big Difference. 

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


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blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
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August 29, 2018 5:52 pm  

Just a point of emphasis at least from my experience.  B&T Mentions Contain, most youth teams are Sweep and Off Tackle by nature.  Far less Defensive traffic to contend with.  I suggest that how you "Set The Edge" with Sweep in mind makes a Big Difference.

Very true.

The sweep is actually something that I think the 4-3 is (potentially) pretty good at defending because you have 4 defenders on or outside the EMOL on each side: DE, OLB, S, and CB.  It's easier to get away with being outnumbered between the tackles if all you have to contend with is a wedge or dive once in a blue moon.

Off tackle, though... good luck trying to handle Power if you're giving the offense a 9 tech and a 3 tech, or a 5 tech and a 1 tech and not wrong-arming.  That's going to make for some frustrating nights.


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PSLCOACHROB
(@pslcoachrob)
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Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 12408
August 30, 2018 6:10 am  

With so many teams running sw, dw, and I variants in youth I think power is the new sweep. The better teams can almost always run power well. Good coaches are catching on to the fact that defenses are set up to stop sweep.


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