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Mar 16

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Southwest Minnesota State University In-Season Practice Plan (Part II)

Southwest Minnesota State University In-Season Practice Plan (Part II)

By Cory Sauter, Head Football Coach

Positive Play Tuesday

On Tuesday’s we emphasize 1st and 2nd downs. Essential they are the same down; we do not treat them differently. Our goal is to gain a profit and remain balanced on those downs. Worst-case scenario is no gain; we certainly do not want to lose any yardage from a negative yard run or an unnecessary sack. This is on the minds of our offensive players during the entire Tuesday practice. This does not mean that we are playing conservative. It simply means that we do not want to take any steps backwards. An incomplete shot on 1st/10 is not considered a negative play.

Pre-Practice- We will begin with a 15-minute jog-Thru to begin practice. Usually we will cover any new concepts or ones that need additional timing and understanding. This is a great way to create confidence before practice and minimize mistakes during the actual practice. I would much rather correct a mistake before practice than waste a full-speed rep during practice.

Stretch- 15 minutes of Dynamic Warm-Up and Stretch

Specialty (Period 1) – Kickers and Kick Returners working together. We will also incorporate a jugs machine for the returners as they are waiting for their live kicks. Anyone not involved will participate in individual drills.

Individual (Period 2-3) – Individual Fundamentals. Not a conditioning period.

Group Work (Period 4-8) – QB’s will work together with the RB’s, Inside receivers, or outside receivers in 5-10 minute segments. The position groups that are not working with the QB’s can work with the offensive line or get additional individual time. For example, the running backs will spend 5 minutes with the QB’s, 5-10 minutes with the offensive line, and 10 minutes of additional individual work.

Team #1 (Period 9-11) – There are 24 reps in Team #1. The first offense will take 6 reps, followed by 6 reps by the back-ups. The first offense will then take 6 additional reps, followed by 6 reps by the back-ups. During the 6–play drive, we will move the ball and spot it wherever the previous play ended. We only allow 1-2 repeats (which are done after the 24 reps) in order to avoid over training. All of these team reps will be executed vs. the scout defense. I will grade each play on the spot (3+ yards equals an efficient play). 5-6 efficient plays out of the 6-play roll equals an A grade; 4=B, 3=C, 2=D, 1 or

less=F. I will tell them what their grade is as they complete their 6th rep. This allows immediate feedback and provides motivation.

Kick-Off (Period 12-13) – Anyone involved with Kick-Off or Scout Kick-Off Return needs to be a part of this special team’s period. All QB’s, RB’s, OL, TE’s not involved will perform Blitz Review during that period. We usually walk through the top 8 pressures. I do not believe in doing a full speed blitz period. I would rather incorporate blitz within our team periods to make it more realistic. If it is a blitz-only period, then everyone knows it is blitz. We want our players to expect blitz on every down and react accordingly.

Team #2 (Period 14-16) – Same as Team #1, except we will exchange plays. The reps that the starters performed in team #1 will become the reps for the back-ups, and the plays that the back-ups performed will become the reps for our starters. This ensures that the starters and backups have practiced all the concepts. All of these will be executed vs. the scout defense. I will grade each play on the spot (3+ yards equals an efficient play). 5-6 efficient plays out of the 6-play roll equals an A grade; 4=B, 3=C, 2=D, 1 or less=F. I will tell them what their grade is as they complete their 6th rep. This allows immediate feedback and provides motivation.

Kick-Off Return (Period 17-18) – Anyone involved with Kick-Off Return or Scout Kick-Off needs to be a part of the special team’s period. All QB’s, RB’s, OL, TE’s, and WR’s not involved will perform Team #3 script review.

Team #3 (Period 19-20) – We will still perform our 1st/2nd Down concepts, except now we will compete vs. the 1st and 2nd defense instead of scouts. During this competition period, we will keep score of efficient plays, just as we did in Team #1 and Team #2.

Skelly – We will finish practice with skelly vs. our defense. This is an opportunity for 2nd and 3rd string players to get additional reps if needed.

**Sudden Change – At some point during one of our two special teams segments on Tuesdays, we will perform a sudden change situation. Essentially, we will have a coach randomly spot a ball anywhere on the field (backed-up, goal line, midfield). The offense will have up to 4 plays to respond to the situation. If the offense scores a TD, we will follow up with an extra point. If the defense stops the offense, then we will punt. If we are in 4-down territory, we may go for it on 4th down. This is a great way for our offense/defense/special teams to react to a sudden opportunity/challenge.

Webby Wednesday

On Wednesday’s we emphasize 3rd downs. Because of the increased number of passes involved on 3rd downs, our goal is to minimize dropped passes, thus the term “Webby Wednesday”. I want our players to understand the distance needed in order to get a first down and focus on making the tough catches.

Pre-Practice- We will begin with a 15-minute jog-thru to begin practice. Usually we will cover any new 3rd down concepts. This is a great way to create confidence before practice and minimize mistakes during the actual practice. I would much rather correct a mistake before practice, than waste a full-speed rep during practice.

Stretch- 15 minutes of Dynamic Warm-Up and Stretch

Specialty (Period 1) – Punters, Long Snappers, and Punt Returners working together. We will also incorporate a jugs machine for the punt returners as they are waiting for their live kicks. Anyone not involved will participate in individual drills.

Individual (Period 2-3) – Individual Fundamentals – not a conditioning period.

Group Work (Period 4-8) – QB’s will work together with the RB’s, Inside receivers, or Outside receivers in 5-10 minute segments. The position groups that are not working with the QB’s can work with the offensive line or get additional individual time. For example, the running backs will spend 5 minutes with the QB’s, 5-10 minutes with the offensive line, and 10 minutes of additional individual work.

Punt (Period 9-10) – Anyone involved with Punt or Scout Punt Return needs to be a part of this special team period. All QB’s, RB’s, OL, TE’s, and WR’s not involved will perform Team #1 script review.

Team #1 (Period 11-13) – There are 24 3rd down reps in Team #1. The first offense will take 6 reps (3rd/11, 3rd/9, 3rd/7, 3rd/5, 3rd/3, and 3rd/1) followed by 6 reps by the back-ups at the same distances. The first offense will take 6 additional reps (*3rd/11, 3rd/9, 3rd/7, 3rd/5, 3rd/5, 3rd/3), followed by 6 reps by the back-ups at the same distances. Notice the adjustment to eliminate practicing 3rd and 1 too many times. Typically, you only get 1-2 in a game. During the 6 3rd down plays, we will also slow down the tempo slightly to accommodate for all the passes. We only allow 1-2 repeats (which are done after the 24 reps) in order to avoid over training. All of these will be executed vs. the scout defense. I will grade each play on the spot (1st down yardage equals an efficient play). 5-6 efficient plays out of the 6-play roll equals an A grade; 4=B, 3=C, 2=D, 1 or less=F I will tell them what their grade is as they complete their 6th rep. This allows immediate feedback and provides motivation.

Punt Return (Period 14-15) – Anyone involved with Punt Return or Scout Punt needs to be a part of the special teams period. All QB’s, RB’s, OL, TE’s not involved will perform Blitz Review during that period. We usually walk through the top 8 pressures. I do not believe in doing a full speed blitz period. I would rather incorporate blitz within our team periods to make it more realistic. If it is a blitz-only period, then everyone knows it is blitz. We want our players to expect blitz on every down and react accordingly.

Team #2 (Period 16-18) – Same as Team #1, except we will exchange plays. The reps that the starters did in team #1 will become the reps for the back-ups, and the plays that the back-ups did will become the reps for our starters. This ensures that both the starters and

backups have been exposed to each concept. All of these will be executed vs. the scout defense. I will grade each play on the spot (1st down yardage equals an efficient play). 5-6 efficient plays out of the 6-play roll equals an A grade; 4=B, 3=C, 2=D, 1 or less=F. I will tell them what their grade is as they complete their 6th rep. This allows immediate feedback and provides motivation.

1 on 1’s (Period 19) – WR’s/DB’s perform Red Zone 1 on 1’s, while OL/DL perform 1 on 1’s. The reason we do Red Zone 1 on 1’s instead of open field 1 on 1’s is to limit the distance our WR’s have to run. They have already put on some mileage with all the 3rd down plays.

Team #3 (Period 20-21) – We will still perform 3rd Down concepts, except now we will compete vs. the 1st and 2nd Defense instead of scouts. During this competition period, we will keep score of 3rd Down Conversions, just as we did in Team #1 and Team #2.

 

Part 3 will be posted tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

About the author

Cory Sauter, Cory Sauter, Head Football Coach Southwest Minnesota State University

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