Technique In The Run Game

Technique Fundamentals: Nine-Point Run Progression

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To be successful in run defense, players must replicate technique and position fundamentals thousands of times to perfect various techniques against different run schemes.

Technique: Nine Points To Follow

This nine-point run progressive is simple. Practice it daily.

1. Stance is extremely important. The down hand is in front of the eyes with 80 percent of the bodyweight resting on the fingertips.

2. Proper alignment with the offensive lineman is necessary. We like to say “half your man-on,” meaning the defensive line will position himself to the inside or outside half of the offensive lineman.

3. The defensive lineman must know his assignment before the get-off.

4.  On movement of the offensive line, the defensive lineman performs his get-off and launches using the launching technique described above.

5. The defensive line must target the breastplate and/or shoulder cuff of the offensive lineman depending on the stance he comes out of. He must keep his eyes in the V of the offensive lineman’s neck or the breastplate, depending on stance. It’s important to make sure that the defensive lineman’s hands stay above his eyes to generate the appropriate force and leverage.

6. Fill those palms with the cloth from the opponent’s jersey.

7. Keep the arms elongated. This will create separation between the defensive lineman and the offensive lineman.

8. Perform the escape by swiping or ripping off the block of the offensive lineman.

9. Now, the defensive lineman is on the hunt. Be the first to the ball and use arm violence to impose your will.

This article was written by Antoine Smith, Director Of Football Initiatives, Boston College. See other articles in the Home Field Advantage series.

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