Youth Football Online

The Promotion & Instruction of Youth Football
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Youth Football Online

The Promotion & Instruction of Youth Football
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Youth Football Online

5 Reasons Why You Should Run a Stack Defense

5 Reasons Why You Should Run a Stack Defense in Youth Football

1. Confusion

Stacking linebackers behind the defensive line will keep the offensive linemen on their heels. They will not know which defender is going to attack where. Stacked defenses will allow you to mix up your slants and blitzes. You can have one call where the defensive line slant inside, then the next play you can have your defensive linemen slant out. Showing the opposing offensive line a stacked look will slow down their fire-out. When you make youth football players think & look, rather than just react, it will slow them down considerably. Consistently mixing up stunts/blitzes will demoralize the o-linemen. It will confuse them and slow down the “get off” (firing out and blocking). Stacked looks will also help disguise pass coverage. Stack the backers and attack!

Related Content:  “Twist Blitz” 3-3 Stack Defense

2. Flexibility

One of the best things about a stacked defense is that it is very adaptable. You can easily get into a 4, 5 , 6,or 8 man front at any point. In youth football offenses are becoming more wide open and explosive. Youth football teams are using multiple formations, trying to create conflict for the defense. Stacked defenses are able to adjust very easily to any offensive formation. Many times you can still maintain your stacked look even when the offense spreads the field.  Stacked defenses are also very simple. Even though there are various slants and stunts the responsibilities are pretty consistent.

3. Multiple Slant/Blitzing

 The blitzes and stunts work very well in youth football. Many youth football teams do not have blocking rules. Having an aggressive stack attack will take advantage of those offenses with no blocking rules.  Even if a team has blocking rules, they probably don’t see stack defenses very often. Stacked defenses are generally aggressive defenses. There are many different blitzing variations out of a stacked defense. You can have a base call where the defensive linemen slant inside and the line backers slant out. You can also have a call where the defensive line slant outside and the linebackers slant inside. Consistently mixing up which way your d-line slants will slow the offense down tremendously. You can utilize overload blitzes out of a stacked look as well. You can utilize zone blitzes out of a stacked look. You can show blitz and then bail out (show blitz but don’t actually do it when the ball is snapped). You can execute slants and stunts on one side or on both sides of the formation. You can execute a blitz or stunt attacking one particular gap. Again, the blitzing variations are endless.

4. Puts Speed on the Field

 Stacked defenses are generally 4-4 stack, 3-5-3 stack, and 3-3-5 stack defenses. These defenses will feature more linebackers and/or secondary players on the field. If you are an undersized defense or you don’t have that many solid defensive linemen a 4-4 or 3-3/3-5 is probably your best option. When you are undersized upfront, you have to put the defensive linemen on the move. On the move meaning, have them slanting/stunting. These defenses adjust to spread teams very easily because they already have speed on the field (linebackers & DBs). These stacked defenses will allow you to blitz your athletes. Most of the time on the youth football level your best athletes are at either DE or LB. These stacked defenses will allow your athletes to play aggressive and make plays.

Related Content: 4-4 Stack Defense

Related Content: Cross Blitz out of the 4-4

5. It’s fun

Running a stacked defense is fun! It’s fun for the players to play in. It’s fun for the coaches. It’s great for the parents to watch. Defenses like the 4-4 stack or 3-5 stack give your team an identity! In youth football every defender loves to blitz. They will love flying around on blitzes and making plays. Youth football players will get so excited when they are told to blitz. Since the 4-4 and 3-3/3-5 will usually send at least one defender every play, all the linebackers will have a chance to blitz. Giving your defense the “attack” mentality will really get the kids excited. There is no blitz more powerful, deceptive, or fun than a blitz out of a stacked defense.


Stacked defenses confuse the offense. They are very flexible (can easily adjust to most offenses). Stacked defenses offer a wide variety of exotic blitzes and stunts. Having a stacked look will put your athletes on the field and allow them to fly around and make plays. Stacked defenses are FUN! Kids, coaches, and parents will love the attacking mindset!  Those are my 5 reasons why you should run a stack defense.


stack attack defense
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(NEW) 3-5-3 Stack Attack Playbook for Youth Football 

  • Aggressive, attacking defense.
  • Various blitzes and slants.
  • “Uptown” & “Downtown” base calls.
  • Easy to implement.
  • Deceptive!
  • Aggressive!
  • Fun!