44 Stack Defense
The 44 stack defense is an excellent defense for youth football. This defense is very diverse. You can create some nice blitzes and stunts from this stacked defense. You can basically put your 4 best players across at the LB positions and have them free to pursue to the ball carrier. I love the 44 stack defense because you can align easily to any offense formation.
Slanting of the defensive linemen and looping of the linebackers work really well in this defense:
- 8 defenders in the box. Strong against the run.
- 4 linebackers across that are able to pursue to the ball. Committing too many players to the defensive line will pretty much leave you with no pursuit defenders.
- Zone and man coverage can be utilized in the 44 stack defense.
- Stacked LBs hide gap responsibility. Makes the offensive linemen think and wonder.
- Can easily adjust to any formation. It is solid against tight and spread formations.
- Defensive linemen in gaps. This will occupy two offensive linemen and create confusion with blocking their blocking scheme.
- C-gap DE can be a real issue for the OL. Plus good C-gap defenders can take away the off-tackle play.
- Great blitzes and stunts.
- Can easily adjust into a 53 or goal-line defense.
- In youth football natural linebackers are hard to find. Usually teams do not have 4 good linebackers. Let’s not forget that you will need to find kids to back the 4 starters up. Very few teams have 4 to 6 capable linebackers. At least I never really had that luxury.
- With the 44 stack defense you will need 4 solid defensive linemen. This defense only features 4 down linemen which will free up some offensive linemen to get onto LBs. If your defensive line can’t control the line of scrimmage, your linebackers will be in for a long game.
- Doesn’t hide minimum play players very well. Since you only have 4 defensive linemen, putting in a MPP player will weaken your defensive line. If I run the 44 I will not put any mpp on defense.
- Containment. Sometimes the outside linebacker will get sucked in and lose contain. When we face a 44 defense we will use our split end to crack these outside linebackers.
The 44 stack defense is an excellent defense for youth football. No defense is perfect. It doesn’t matter what defense you use if you follow these 5 fundamentals of youth football defense you will have success.
Remember, the key to defense is tackling!
(See Also) 4-4 Defense Blitz Packages
(See Also) Indy Cross Blitz- 44 Defense