One word play calls
 
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defensewins
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May 6, 2018 8:07 pm  

What is your guys' opinion on one word play calls?  I know Oregon under Chip Kelly did this.  Not sure of many others. 

As an example, instead of calling a play "green right strong slot spider 2 Y banana" call it "Chucky" for the whole thing.

Or, instead of "base bullets red" call it "Dallas". 

So the one word would be the formation, shift, motion, protection, and play...or front, stem, pressure and coverage. 


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gumby_in_co
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May 6, 2018 8:34 pm  

We did it as a DW team one year. Worked great, but we only had 5 plays.
Toss
Sweep
Wedge
Pitch Pass
Flood Pass

We also had Counter and Reverse, but we had to huddle for those.

We used a city or state that started with the same letter as the play called. If we wanted to call a different formation or position tag, we'd call that separately from the sideline.

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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somecoach
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May 6, 2018 8:42 pm  

Imo only for upper levels and a little overrated

With our no-huddle system we can already get play calls off in 2-3 words; condensing it to 1 isn't worth it for the memorization required


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ZACH
 ZACH
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May 7, 2018 4:09 am  

What is your guys' opinion on one word play calls?  I know Oregon under Chip Kelly did this.  Not sure of many others. 

As an example, instead of calling a play "green right strong slot spider 2 Y banana" call it "Chucky" for the whole thing.

Or, instead of "base bullets red" call it "Dallas". 

So the one word would be the formation, shift, motion, protection, and play...or front, stem, pressure and coverage.

We did this 3 seasons ago, we used phonetic alphabet. 1 formation always set to the field.  Worked well...

https://www.osric.com/chris/phonetic.html

We used states but kids arent smart with geography,  i suppose.

If you add formations and motions obviousley you need more words.

https://www.xandolabs.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3316:multiple-one-word-play-calls-for-tempo-offense-2&catid=94&Itemid=162

http://www.footballperspective.com/and-then-tom-said-to-his-offense-bama-left/

http://highspeedspreadfootball.blogspot.com/2015/01/using-one-word-calls-in-tempo-offense.html?m=1

https://coachgrabowski.wordpress.com/2013/02/12/one-word-play-calls/

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


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ZACH
 ZACH
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May 7, 2018 6:10 am  

Just want to elaborate, this one word play call was mainly for 70% of a game and in 1 formation.  We would flip the formation by yelling "flip" from sideline...our "y"was always to the boundary.  "H" always to field side.

We had 3 plays with built in motion... power, counter, and play action off of power.

If we wanted to add  motion not normally in a play we would use our number motion calls. Eg 1 - fast motion 2- shuffle 3- fast return 4 - slow return ect

Play would be "3 alpha" which is def more efficient than "doubles quick 20 read"

Install wise we use phonetic alpha bet to name the plays. Alpha is wide zone right... no hole numbers...no goofy creative system...just run play right, or left.

Snap count is always on qb... we used "ready, ready"  or " go" as key word/phrase the next word is our take off.  Our qb would need to be creative at the time manning was  using "hurry hurry" as a precursor to snap.  Teams catch on so we brought in "go".  So a cadense would be " set green purple 90 Omaha..READY READY- HUT"  another would just be " GO blue" . 

Go on 2? Qb tells them "on 2, on 2"  at the line...but our 2 is off the second "ready, ready" ... " set green 9 ready ready hut...check blue...ready ready go"

Be effecient in time is key to success...in youth its much more with limited practice time and teaching time.

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


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jrk5150
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May 7, 2018 6:57 am  

You know, my answer changed as I was writing this.  As I sit here thinking about it - in most offenses, SOMEBODY has to memorize each play using a different word.  If they can do it, then why not everyone?

Bear with me here, I'm kind of working this out as I type.

First - it can be done.  JJ's Simple DW uses one or two word play calls. Jack Reed's warp speed SW uses numbers 1-9 for his plays, kids have to simply memorize them.  At some point, you reach the point of diminishing returns, meaning your kids aren't going to remember.  But I don't know where that point is.  They remember an awful lot when they want to. And remember, they're already memorizing the smaller parts of a multi-word play call.

So looking at it from the standpoint of what I do with the DW - I could call WB/TB Power Right one of the following: Power (would have to put in a word to flip it to go left), Red Power (JJ style - his terminology would be "Brown Toss"), or Red Rip 26 Power (what I do). 

The difference as I see it is how I want my 2 back to remember that he has to go in motion and get the toss into the 6 hole.

Up until now, because we use motion on other plays, I always thought giving him the RIP call made it easier to remember - he'll hear RIP on both power and counter, so he's more likely to remember to go in motion hearing it more often.  And he hits the 6 hole on a couple of different plays, so again, I thought it made it easier for him to just hear 26 and know he's going there.  More repetition, easier to remember.  He doesn't really need to know if it's power or blast or ISO, just go to the 6 hole.

And that might be true. At least for the 2 back. 

HOWEVER - for the line, they still are associating one word with the play call - power, counter, trap, blast, sweep.  So my extended play call doesn't really benefit them at all.  And if THEY can remember it, why can't everyone?  If I expect my line to differentiate between these plays, then why can't I expect my 2 back to remember his part of each play just off the one word?

And as I sit here typing, I honestly wonder if the kids even pay attention to their part of the play call, or if they just memorize the entire play anyway.  I actually kind of think it's the latter.  I am starting to suspect that there is zero difference to the 2 back whether I call Red Rip 45 Counter, or just Red Counter, or even just Counter since RED is our base.  Or heck, just call it Booberry.  I suspect it doesn't matter.  I think when I'm first teaching him maybe I can harp on the RIP call, but honestly, when we get down to it, I don't think he even looks at RIP, it's just part of a string of words that he's memorized as a unique play.

So right now, my thinking is that unless your offense has plays where kids may do different things on the same play - maybe go jet motion one time on FB trap, but orbit motion another time, and no motion a third time - I'm not sure it's worth breaking the play out into a bunch of different parts.

The only caveat is the coaches.  THEY will more readily remember what each part is doing with the multi-word play call.  And that might be important enough to do it that way.  But the kids?  I'm kind of thinking the simpler you make it, meaning the fewer words, the better they'll just remember it.


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Threepwood
(@wettstein)
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May 7, 2018 7:09 am  

will work fine - just reduce to one syllable.  "Chucky" and "Indy" will both sound the same if one player hears only the last part.  All it takes is one player to botch a play.  IE, cat, dog, bone, rock.....


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ZACH
 ZACH
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May 7, 2018 7:34 am  

If kids listen to 60% of what you say 1 out of 3 words will not be heard or understood... so... just say 1 or 2 lol

My last time running dw... our calls were play ans direction .toss right/left...counter right/left, trap right left, wedge right, left, xx, pass right, left. This was with 10/11

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


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Dusty Ol Fart
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May 7, 2018 8:16 am  

Our audibles were and are 1 word.

As far as any of this goes..As long as they kids get it, why not?  However, all it takes is one to fall asleep or go the wrong way and you look like they Keystone Cops. 

One word or 1,000 all it takes is one miscue. 

😉

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


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dollar
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May 7, 2018 10:12 am  

What age are you coaching?

Are you No-Huddle?

Are you a Up Tempo Offense?

We are No-Huddle and Up-Tempo offense.

Normally we Call Formations and Hand Signal Plays.

We have a "Go" Package that is our 2 Minute Package-this is extremely Up-Tempo.

We run this package from one formation with five plays that are one word only.

We run these on Silent Count.

So we call out Go Go Go, let the team quickly get in formations, and then we call the "word" for the play.  As soon as team hears the "word" they quickly get in stance and QB checks team alignment and then signals for snap to start the play.

We also use the "Go" plays sometimes in the middle of series like right after a long gainer or on a short yardage play where we can quickly run qb sneek.

Have used this all the way down to 9U-the younger the better it works IMHO.


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MBCoach
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May 7, 2018 10:38 am  

Disclaimer: I coach 12u ball and get my kids essentially year round. I have some elite talent this year, and have the players to run this system.

We run no-huddle, in a pass-heavy spread offense. Our base calls are made by yelling out the next formation immediately after the ball is downed. The players run to the ball in that formation. They then get a 3-digit code, which gives them the play. On the inside of the 3-sided coaching sleeve, they have a chart which gives them their assignment on that play. The first digit signals our motion, the and the second two digits give the play.

Ex: 737.... 7- signals a jet motion from one of our receivers, 37- is the jet sweep with a backside RPO call.

Each player sees only their assignment within the play, with the exception of the QB. The line essentially ignores the motion call; and looks at 37 and sees “Outside Zone”. The backside outside receiver only sees “Post”

On the front of our playcard, we have a similar chart, but it’s for our 1 word calls. We use animals, and it signals tempo, play type or series, loads of things. We do generally run no huddle, but we need to have a slowdown call.

Example:
Turtle & Tortise are our slowdown calls. If I call either of these, the QB must come to the sideline befween each play. In Turtle, were still in Up tempo (because turtle has a U in it), so the other 10 players should run to the ball and wait for a call. In Tortise, we go to dOwn tempo (because Tortise has an O in it). Playcalls in these two sets, as well as Bronco (our base set, B for base) will be made in the way I explained above, the 3 digit code manner.

All birds mean “we’re flying”

Falcon (the F in falcon shows us were tagging Four verts down the field).

Hawk is our quIck game set

Tiger is actually 3 plays in one call. Like a tiger, we assess the situation (with an RPO to see what defense they’re in), setup for the attack (call something like a smoke screen, bubble, or slant to get the pass coverage biting down), and then pounce (a playcall off of our setup call like a fake smoke wheel, fake bubble wheel, or a sluggo to beat them deep).

All of the animal information is available on the front card. There are 3 columns, representing each hash and the middle of the field. So “Tiger” will have 3 totally different playsets depending on where we are on the field. This makes it so the defense has no idea that these 1 word calls even mean plays.

And, this system makes it so the kids don’t need to memorize anything, other than the difference between an outside zone or an inside zone. The receivers need to know their route tree and motions. The QB is the only one who needs to see it all.


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spidermac
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May 8, 2018 7:39 am  

Okay, when we were Double Wing...We were Red RIP 26 Power...we flipped the line, so Red told the line where the wall side was, RIP told the back field who was in motion, 2 told the backfield who got the ball 6 told them where they were going and Power told everyone the blocking scheme. The same play going the other way was Blue Liz 45 Power. We would add tags for formation alignments, ie, Nasty split TE.

Last season we went spread, no line flipping. So a play call for us was Ace Houston, Ace was the formation, Houston was the play call. Houston is stretch left, the same play going the other direction is Ace Cougar. Essentially, if you can find it on a map, it went left, if you couldn't then it went right, we had Chicago/Bear, Missouri/Tiger, Kansas/Jayhawk, Dallas/Cowboy, etc.

As we started, with the teaching, we found the boys were taking too long with the wrist coaches, so we took them away, the wrist coaches for the line had the blocking scheme, for the ball guys, it had the play call, i.e., Red 0 on the wrist coach was Bear - Zone Read. When we took the wrist coaches away, we sent the formation and the play call in, and the line would line up knowing what they were doing, but the ball guys had no idea what bear was...so I said, cmon guys, its zone read, and they said oh, Red 0...so, we decided to create hand signals for the line and give the ball guys their wrist coaches back...

None of them suck, they just haven't found what the kid is good at yet.


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blockandtackle
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May 8, 2018 8:09 am  

My preference is as few words or syllables as possible, but the overall goal needs to be the simplest teaching and what makes it easier to remember and communicate.  To me, more words typically means more opportunities for confusion or missed parts of the call, but fewer words often means rote memorization.  Generally, if the OL can remember a run play with 1 word or a QB can remember a pass play with 1 word, everyone else should be able to remember his job, too.

You have to be careful to not just focus on keeping it to one word over the teaching, though.  For example, if you call a play "Mississippi"... that's only one word, but 4 syllables so you're not really saving much verbiage.  Then if you want "Mississippi" to be the play to the left and the play to the right to be "Rebels," well then the kids need to know their word association and know that "Mississippi" is "Ole Miss" and that "Rebels" is the mascot.  So you'd have a 1 word system, but it's really not that user friendly to the younger kids.

By contrast, a simple system where you call the formation "Right" and the play "Power" and the direction "Odd" is pretty simple and has the same number of syllables, despite being 3 words.

If you want to go absolutely light speed fast, it makes sense to use a one word call to signal in a package of plays that divides the field into thirds, with the formation also included in the call.  So yelling out "Battleship" would tell them all to get into a 3X2 Empty set with strength to the field with a Trap up front, a quick concept on one side, and a bubble screen on the other.  The QB goes up to the line, and then you can signal what he should do: throw a bubble screen to one side, a quick pass to the other side, or keep it up the middle on the Trap.

Another thing you can do in a spread offense to cut down on verbiage is to just make the formation call an automatic until you want something different.  2X2 when the ball is between the goal posts, Trips to the field when you're on a hash, with the RB simply aligning based on where he needs to be in the play.  Then you just call the play and run it.

There's also nothing that says you have to run a totally symmetrical offense with all plays run to both sides.  You may have some plays you just run to the right and some you just run to the left.  Some college teams do this with Power only going to the right and Counter only to the left.  If you're doing this, you can eliminate the need for a direction call, since the play only goes one way, anyway.

Then you can build the snap count into the play by having a default where you go on 1 or 2 every time and just run a freeze play or 1st sound play every 5-6 plays to keep the defense off balance.  That eliminates more verbiage.

By stripping that stuff out... you can get some 1 word calls pretty easily, then make them 2 or 3 word calls when you need something different to break tendencies.

I think it's easier and often better to do one-word calls on defense, personally.  Make the first letter communicate the front and the type of word called denote the coverage (boys names=man, place names=Cov. 3, etc.).


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Prodigy
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May 8, 2018 8:28 pm  

A few years back I switched to individualized wrist coaches.  It took some time to lay them out and it’s a little bit of an investment but I can’t think of a more streamlined way of calling in plays.

On any given play you’ve got 11 kids on the field, each with a role.  As far as line play goes, the left end doesn’t care what the right end is doing and neither of these players really *need* to know where the ball is going.  In fact, if you can get the kids to not worry about where the ball is going and simply execute their assignment at 100% it works out for the best.

The QB and runningbacks don’t need to know how the play is going to be blocked, only the backfield action and who gets the ball and where it’s going to.

I’ve heard it argued that you’ll have better football players if the kids have more understanding of what is going on...perhaps that’s true but this is a system that worked very well for the teams I coached and given time the kids actually did pick up on the overall system just from running it and seeing it for themselves.  I had linemen who stared at a wrist coach that said “down block | wedge | pull | pass pro” for a season and they knew who was getting the ball on whatever play went in.

Anyhow...I took the basis of this from Cisar and tweaked it for myself with input on this forum.

Columns = color, numbers = row.  I.e. black 0-9, red 0-9
You call in the play like black 123 and have a “live” number where the other two numbers do not matter.

Kids get a play call like black 012...that is black 0 for example and they look at their wrist coach and it has the assignment.  If you’re the center it might say step left, right guard block down, left guard pull to 6 hole.  Wingback “motion toss to 6”

What’s really nice about this system is that linemen are interchangeable.  They need to know the holes still and need to know how to execute each block required of each position. 

If you show up for a fair fight, you are unprepared.


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mahonz
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May 8, 2018 8:42 pm  

What is your guys' opinion on one word play calls?  I know Oregon under Chip Kelly did this.  Not sure of many others. 

As an example, instead of calling a play "green right strong slot spider 2 Y banana" call it "Chucky" for the whole thing.

Or, instead of "base bullets red" call it "Dallas". 

So the one word would be the formation, shift, motion, protection, and play...or front, stem, pressure and coverage.

Off topic here but I see you are coaching College now. Very cool and congrats!  8)

Im a what you hear is what you do play call designer so I have no opinion here.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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