Offensive Line Blocking Techniques
The game of football is won at the line of scrimmage. If you control the line of scrimmage you will control the game. Offensive line blocking techniques like run and pass blocking need to be practiced every single practice.
Run Blocking Technique
- Explode forward through target, shooting hands inside with thumbs up. The aiming point is the numbers/arm pits of the defender.
- Keep elbows inside, inside elbow will mean inside hands!
- Feet should always be pumping. Keep the feet alive.
- Feet shoulder-width apart-short six inch steps while engaged-choppy feet.
- Drive- sink the hips, sky the eyes. Short choppy steps finish the block.
- When blocking on an angle (down blocking), make sure your OL take a leverage step towards the defender. They will also need their head across the defenders face. Drive through the outside hip/shoulder of the defender.
- Attitude! The offensive line is all about attitude. Be physical and finish the block.
- Inside gap responsibility first.
- Wide base, good arm extension.
- Short choppy steps- step into defender.
- Nice wide base.
- Hands inside-jolt defender full arm extension.
- Hold ground. Even though offensive linemen cannot go down field, that doesn’t mean they can’t step into the defender. We tell our kids to step into the defenders. Many times when youth football linemen step back to pass block, they will get bulled over. Attack the block, do not step back.
- To discourage interior penetration you can move your line splits down to 1 foot or to zero splits and have the linemen step down. We usually are at 2 foot splits. If we are weaker on the offensive line we will tighten up our splits on pass plays. This will suck the defense in.
- Have quick hitting/crisp passing plays. You cannot ask your linemen to pass block for too long.
(See Also) Pass Blocking Scheme
(See Also) Pass Protection fundamentals
Line splits are a vital aspect of offensive line blocking techniques.
• If you are undersized up front, choose a blocking scheme that will utilize double team blocks.
• Bring the splits down to 1 foot or to zero. This will allow you to double team interior defensive linemen.
• You can also widen the splits. Widening the line splits will spread the defense out horizontally. Spreading the defense out horizontally will create great blocking angles and natural running lanes inside. Sometimes going zero line splits is not a good idea. It will suck the entire defense inside. This will sometimes create a mess inside- making it difficult to find running room inside.
• It is your job as the coach to select the proper line splits for your offensive linemen.
Utilizing the snap count is another underrated and under utilized aspect of offensive line blocking techniques. Mix your snap counts up from the first day of practice. If you practice it enough your players will learn not to go off-sides.
• Slow down the defensive rush by mixing up your snap counts. Make the defense watch the ball rather than just allowing the defense to react and time your snap count. If they are able to time your snap count your offensive will be in trouble.
• Have fast counts and long counts.
• Have a quick silent count.
• Every offensive drill should begin on a snap count.
Utilizing your blocking scheme for effective offensive line blocking techniques.
• If you have smaller offensive linemen you can use a down blocking scheme. This will have every offensive linemen block down. This will allow for excellent blocking angles on defensive linemen.
• GOD blocking scheme (most common): Gap-On-Down means the offensive linemen is responsible for securing their inside gap first. If there is no defender in the offensive linemen’s inside gap, he blocks a defender over. If there is no defender over, the O-linemen blocks down on next defender (or even a linebacker).
• Base blocking, big on big. I never have my kids base block. It is asking too much from them. What I personally do is we down block on interior defenders and kick-out the edge defenders on inside plays. We will seal or crack the edge defenders on outside attacking plays.
(See Also) Getting into a Three Point Stance
(See Also) Skip Pulling for OL