This page is all about blocking running back football drills. Whether it's a fullback clearing the way for your tailback or pass protection, your offense is in trouble if your backs have trouble with their blocking skills.
Use these running back football drills to shore up any deficiencies or as a base for teaching youngsters the correct fundamentals from the very beginning.
You'll find running back drills for run-blocking and pass protection skills.
Run Blocking Running Back Drills
Objective - Teach the fundamentals of basic blocking.
Action - Running backs form two groups. Each group lines up on a line of scrimmage so there is a long line of "pairs" facing one another. One line of players are the running backs while the other line will be defenders. At the coach's signal, the running backs move into the defenders and perform the "fit" blocking position.
Fit position: Head up, butt down, flat back, feet providing a wide base, hands inside.
Coaching Details - Emphasize the correct fit position with each movement during this running back drill.
Objective - Teach backs to hold their blocks once contact is made.
Action - Form two single file lines facing one another (one offense, one defense). On the coach's signal, the offensive player blocks the defender using the fit position form. The coach signals the defender to move left or right, forcing the running back to hold his block during the movement. The back must stay locked on the defender until the coach signals the end of the running back drill.
Coaching Details - Emphasize the proper fit position and to keep the running back's feet moving with the defender.
Objective - Teach how to block correctly.
Action - Line up the running backs about 5 yards in front of the popsicle sled. On coach's signal, the first back in line will burst out of his stance, hit the sled and drive the sled. The coach should let the running back drive the blocking sled about 5 yards or so, then blow the whistle.
The proper way to hit the sled during this running back drill is with the head up and shoulders squared. Once contact is made, take choppy steps and maintain a wide base with the legs.
Toss Sweep Block
Objective - Teach correct toss sweep blocking fundamentals.
Action - For this running back drill, line up your center, QB, fullback and tailback. Position a blocking dummy or cone on each side where the offensive tackle and tight end would be. Then have a linebacker positioned on either side of the formation so you can run the running back football drill to both sides.
At the snap, run the toss sweep. The fullback needs to identify the defender's position and make a block on the inside shoulder of the defender as quickly as possible. The fullback should break down right before the block for strength on contact. Also, the fullback must "read" whether the defender is attacking the block. If so, perform a chop block on the outside of the thighs. If not, kick the defender outside.
It's the tailback's job to stay behind the block and "read" which cut to take.
Coaching Details - Instruct the defenders to come in from different angles and alignments so the fullback has to adjust his block. Emphasize correct stances, alignments and proper toss sweep technique. Run to both sides.
Objective - Teach correct off tackle play blocking fundamentals.
Action - Line up your center, QB, fullback and tailback. Position a blocking dummy on each side where the offensive tackles would be. Then have a defensive end positioned about a yard outside of each dummy.
At the snap, run the off tackle play. The fullback should graze the outside of the blocking dummy (tackle) and kick out the defensive end. The end should sometimes use a contain responsibility and sometimes attack the play inside to give the fullback practice with both blocks. The tailback needs to read the block for the proper lane to run through.
Coaching Details - Emphasize correct stances, alignments and proper off tackle play technique. Run to both sides.
Objective - Teach correct isolation play blocking fundamentals.
Action - Line up your center, QB, fullback and tailback. Position four blocking dummies (2 guards, 2 tackles) on the line of scrimmage. Now, put 2 linebackers holding blocking shields about 3-4 yards off the line (generally positioned between the offensive guard & tackle).
At the snap, run the isolation play. The fullback needs to find the LB on the play side, break down and then drive the linebacker back. The tailback needs to follow the fullback through the hole and cut off the block.
The play side linebacker needs to attack the fullback while the center kicks out the back side LB as he tries to come across formation for the tackle.
Coaching Details - Emphasize correct stances, alignments and proper isolation play technique. Run the running back drill to both sides.
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Pass Protection Running Back Drills
Objective - Teach proper pass blocking to running backs.
Action - Position 2 cones on the line of scrimmage about five yards apart. Put a running back and defender on the line facing one another. They should be approximately two yards apart.
On coach's whistle, the defender shuffles back & forth between the cones while the RB breaks down and "mirrors" his movements (running back keeps chugging his legs). The coach should signal again after about 5 seconds. At that point the defender tries to burst past the RB while the RB steps up, pass blocks him and maintains contact.
The running back needs to keep his knees bent during entire running back drill for a proper low position.
Coaching Details - Be sure the RB doesn't cross his feet during the initial shuffling "mirror" drill. Slide, step, slide, etc.
Basic Pass Protection Drill
Objective - Teach running backs to pass protect linebackers off the edge.
Action - Line up your center, QB and two running backs split on either side of the QB. Position two dummy bags out wide as offensive tackles on the line. Put two outside linebackers just outside the tackles.
At the snap, the two linebackes come in on the rush while the backs come up to meet them for the block.
Coaching Details - Emphasize correct stances and alignments. Make sure the running backs gather themselves as contact is about to be made and that they stay low.
Sprint-Out Pass Block
Objective - Teach correct blocking fundamentals on the sprint-out.
Action - For this running back drill, place 2 cones on the line of scrimmage representing the offensive tackles. Position your running back, QB and defender (on the edge). At the snap, the quarterback sprints out, the defender plays contain and the RB sprints out to block the defender from an "outside-in" angle.
Coaching Details - Teach your running backs to use the shoulder and to drive it through the defender's outside thigh.
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