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Vince148
(@vince148)
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May 14, 2017 5:07 am  

I've never really seen much about how to evaluate players for defensive positions so I'm interested in what main drills you use to evaluate defensive players other than big guys on the line, best athletes at LB/S and MPPs at CB.


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
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May 14, 2017 5:49 am  

Depends on your philosophy.

For me, CB is one of the most difficult positions to fill because he is required to be an all around player with great speed. I would never play a MP there. Ever....no matter what age group Im coaching.

Also depends on the Defense you are running. 30 and 40 fronts require an above average DL or things probably wont fly. Whereas the 50 and 60 fronts will be more MP friendly.

How your Defense use its LB'rs depends on what kind of players they are. Not many Defenses do well with slow LB'rs but these players must have some ass behind them. Again if you implement two LB'rs they must be high quality....4 and you can probably get away with below average at one of the ILB positions.

I dont have any special drills per say that I run looking for talent....just the normal drills that marry with the Defense. If I find the players to fill all 11 positions....great! If not then I shuffle until I find the formula. That could mean playing certain players Field and Boundary or matching up players per the opponent.

Just run your normal drills looking for talent to fill positions is my take. I am in the best 11 play Defense Camp so speed is king. I will play one MP at time on the DL if I have too. A MP meaning...slow.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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Test Account
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May 14, 2017 8:00 am  

Depends on your philosophy.

For me, CB is one of the most difficult positions to fill because he is required to be an all around player with great speed. I would never play a MP there. Ever....no matter what age group Im coaching.

Also depends on the Defense you are running. 30 and 40 fronts require an above average DL or things probably wont fly. Whereas the 50 and 60 fronts will be more MP friendly.

How your Defense use its LB'rs depends on what kind of players they are. Not many Defenses do well with slow LB'rs but these players must have some ass behind them. Again if you implement two LB'rs they must be high quality....4 and you can probably get away with below average at one of the ILB positions.

I dont have any special drills per say that I run looking for talent....just the normal drills that marry with the Defense. If I find the players to fill all 11 positions....great! If not then I shuffle until I find the formula. That could mean playing certain players Field and Boundary or matching up players per the opponent.

Just run your normal drills looking for talent to fill positions is my take. I am in the best 11 play Defense Camp so speed is king. I will play one MP at time on the DL if I have too. A MP meaning...slow.

do you have anything specific you like at any position? Quality, trait, or whatever. Thanks.

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Pantherlinecoach
(@pantherlinecoach)
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May 14, 2017 9:06 am  

The answer to that question would depend on what you run in my opinion. I run John Carbons 6-2 Shooter. My best athletes play DE in that defense. We play a Stinger technique at that position, so those guys must be aggressive and athletic. Your defense may call for something different to do with your better athletes.


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
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May 14, 2017 5:25 pm  

do you have anything specific you like at any position? Quality, trait, or whatever. Thanks.

Not really. The better athletes play in space and the lessor athletes play inside. So if forced to do so...a NG and the MIKE might be the lessor athletes. I can take a lessor athlete and teach him to defend a small space. I cant teach athleticism in 100 days.

As far as Football IQ....a must for anyone that will play coverage. But that takes time regardless. We use a lot of automatics per formation and that all falls on the coverage.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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patriotsfatboy1
(@patriotsfatboy1)
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Joined: 7 years ago
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May 15, 2017 3:59 am  

We will evaluate based on tackling drills for all players.  For the line, we run various drills to see how they attack their gap from both a 3 and 2 point stance against live blocking (also used to evaluate the OL).  For the CB's, we will see how they cover in space (we mainly play zone), but we also want to see if they can be physical at the line (jam receiver, come up and stop the sweep).  For the LB's, we have read drills where we see how they react to run, pass and option looks. 

With all of that said, you have to see them in game situations and it changes.  I have players that are good in evals, but on game day, they are lacking in areas that we have to put a lot of focus on in practice. 

We play a 6-3 and we focus on getting a good Mike and DE's first.  Then the DT's, CB's and OLB's.  We can usually slip an MPP in at DG along with a space eater. 


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blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
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August 3, 2017 7:21 am  

I've never really seen much about how to evaluate players for defensive positions so I'm interested in what main drills you use to evaluate defensive players other than big guys on the line, best athletes at LB/S and MPPs at CB.

I would never put my MPPs at CB and I don't like big, slow kids on DL either.  Size is great for a DL if they can get off the ball and move, but otherwise it's useless.  CBs need to be able to cover, get off a block, and make an open field tackle when they have to--if they can't do that, they give up TDs.

I like two:

The first is Jingle Jangle, to see who can react quickly and show lateral quickness.  Those are the most important defensive skills, IMO.

Have the whole team line up in 4-5 lines and then have one player you know can move "lead" the drill by facing up to them in the middle.  Tell your leader to go side to side between two cones.  He can shuffle or turn his hips and run.  The rest of the team has to mirror him.

While this drill is going on, start sorting your players into 4 equal groups: the worst, the next worst ones, the ok ones, and the best ones--do not label the groups this way, but that's what they are.  Use a whistle and call out the kids you want out of the drill, taking the terrible ones out first (easy to spot, since they'll be falling down).  Once that group is full, start pulling the 2nd worst.  Then you're left with your better kids and you can start sorting those out into the top 2 groups.

The best are the ones you want to take a first look at as LBs and DBs.  The next best are the ones you will try first at LB and contain DEs, but you can move those kids down to DL if they can't hack it.  The 3rd best group will probably contain your starting DL.  The worst are likely to be your MMPs.

This helps make sure you don't fall for "the eyeball test" or "straight line speed" and put a kid out there who's big but slow footed or a fast kid who runs great in a straight line... but gets beat because he can't change direction worth a lick.  It also keeps you from pigeon-holing kids based on what position he looks like he should play, rather than what he can actually do.

Once you've tested their athletic ability with the Jingle Jangle, the second drill to use is the good ol' Oklahoma drill to see who gets off the ball and likes contact.  Mark a star beside those kids who impress here.  If a kid does that and is in one of your top 2 groups in the Jingle Jangle, he should get a long look on defense, even if you have to move him to a position you think he might be too small or slow for.

After that, it's just a matter of seeing who learns his assignments and is consistent.  If a kid is coachable and holds down his assignment, he might earn his way into starting over a better, but mistake-prone, athlete.


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dollar
(@dollar)
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August 3, 2017 7:31 am  

I love to pressure the center.

I like to have one or two aggressive, quick off the ball kids with some size that I can play or at least sub in at Nose guard.

This year we are cross training two outside LB's to go down and also play NG-its an easy train also.

While I do get MPP's plays at nose guard and also DT, when it is on the line I love a Stud at NG.

Also as a Play Caller, I hate a disruptive NG!


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Ronin
(@ronin1974)
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August 3, 2017 8:19 am  

Best drill to evaluate defensive players... Whose Ball.  The most aggressive players are likely better defensive players (if they will tackle soundly).


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Bob Goodman
(@bob-goodman)
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August 5, 2017 8:07 am  

Not really. The better athletes play in space and the lessor athletes play inside. So if forced to do so...a NG and the MIKE might be the lessor athletes. I can take a lessor athlete and teach him to defend a small space.

Lessor athletes?  It's their field they're leasing to you?  Seems they should get their pick of position!


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ZACH
 ZACH
(@bucksweep58)
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Coach
August 6, 2017 7:18 pm  

I beleive defense is all about hustle and attitude u start there.

I usually have smaller kids so lbs and dbs stick out like sorethumbs. Our first week in pads we teach pursuit...tackling..block shedding... then i literally put kids in defense and give them 1 rule we moved kids around until we get an idea.

So if you have an oppurtunity to scrimmage use it.

Far as drills per position... i use a 3 lane eye opener style of srill to find lbs... Oklahoma 1v1 and a tackle bag for d line...and a open field tackle drill for dbs.

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


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