Youth Football Online visited 12 year NFL veteran, Super Bowl champ and NY Giants broadcaster Roman Oben for his Roman’s Soldier Showcase. This was a mini spring football camp for players in the 8th to 11th grade. The showcase had some of the best football talent in New York and New Jersey in attendance along with a group of top level coaches.
We were instantly greeted at the entrance of the Indoor Sports Pavilion (in Randolph, NJ) by Roman Oben and his team. Everyone was in great spirits, ready for some spring football. The day kicked off with a welcome speech from Roman Oben and a coaches introduction. The coaching staff was well assembled, a group of ex-NFL’ers and skilled coaches. Roman further explained expectations for showcase participants.
Camp begins by stretching and warm-ups with speed coach Brad Vacarro.
I guess it was fitting that a speed coach be in attendance because what stood out most about this showcase was the amount of speed these kids displayed. Brad is very technical with his approach to warm-ups and speed/strength training. We noted down some of his key recommendations:
- For lunges, go slow, hips and chest up, the proper way arms opposite legs.
- For push-ups, wide, go wide! When going down- count to 4, go slow.
Following an excellent warm up, the kids then went into individual position drills with their position coaches. The running backs worked on the proper method of taking a handoff. The RBs then concentrated extensively on ball security. Here was a youth football running back “crab” drill that we love:
There was a large turnout of skill position players. The QBs also received a lot of technical instruction. They were taught how to throw the ball on 2, 5, and 7 step drops. They also worked in drills on throwing on the run. The quarterbacks got plenty of passes in and such threw to a variety of targets.
The offensive and defensive linemen also got a ton of work in. The offensive linemen worked on run blocking techniques, pass blocking techniques and blocking assignments. The defensive linemen worked a lot of block destruction and pass blocking techniques. These linemen were also able to get some tips from 12 NFL veteran left tackle Roman Oben. If you’re a lineman you need to make it out to this camp.
Participants took part in 1 on 1’s, 2 on 2’s and 7 on 7 competitions. Here’s where we got a chance to see individual talent. Lots of speed!
This showcase had Rivals.com and a few other scouts in attendance. Matt from Rivals.com had a few words for the kids that were of note. He explained that the Rivals.com star ratings doesn’t matter and athletes shouldn’t take the ratings too seriously. What is important is the coaches opinion. This was a well organized and efficient camp with superior coaching. Roman Oben is genuine person who has the kids’ best interest in mind.
Here’s Roman talking about his motivation for the Roman’s Soliders Showcase: