Apr 04

A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Defensive Schemes in Football

Defense is the mainstay of most teams in American Football. A good defense could be the deciding factor between a title winning team and any other team. Just ask the legendary Tom Landry, who won so many NFL titles with the Dallas Cowboys team!

Defensive Football Formations

Defensive Linesmen
Like the name suggests, they are the players that stand directly behind the line of scrimmage. Most teams use 3 or 4 linesmen depending on the game plan. They are supposed to tackle the offense players in the team to help rush the ball forward.

Defensive Linebackers
Defensive linebackers are the second line of defense in case the ball gets past the linesmen. The tougher linebackers line up behind the linesmen while the thinner, faster ones play on the wings and rush the ball to the offense players. Teams may use 3 or 4 linebackers based on the formation.

Defensive Backs
Teams usually play with 4 defensive backs – two cornerbacks who stand on either end of the pitch as a protection from opposition players running in through the wings and passing into the center, one free safety who goes around the entire line of defense, and a strong safety who is the cover for the opposition players who get past both the linesmen and linebackers.

There are two main defensive football formations in American Football. Which formation to take in a particular game depends largely on what positions the opposition is taking.

The 4-3: The 4-3 was the formation which if not invented, was certainly adopted by Tom Landry with great success. The 4-3 looks like a more balanced formation with 2 defensive tackles in the center just behind the line of scrimmage and two defensive ends on the two sides of the tackles. There are 3 linebackers and 4 defensive backs as protection in case

Apr 02

Zone Blocking For Youth Football Teams

There are many differences between youth football players and College, Pro and High School players. To say the difference is night and day would not do justice to how different they are. It would be like the differences in the beauty of Miss America and the 1,000 pound bearded lady at the State Fair.

College, Pro and even High School players practice 6 days a week and play their games on a 7th day. Most of these guys practice 20-30 hours each week, youth football teams practice from 4-8 hours every week. Pro, College and High School players have played the game for 7-25 years, they have the basics down, they know the game. Youth football players have 1-2 years of experience and many youth teams are made up of a majority of kids that have never played before. Most youth football players don’t know the difference between a 3 technique and a footstool. Pro, College and High School kids are 16-35 years old, they can move faster, control their bodies better and retain and process much more information than youth football players. Pro, College and High School teams cut weak players, they are the best of the best. The pros and college teams cut kids every day that were the best players in their respective youth and High School teams. Even the High Schools cut weaker players, they also send weaker kids to JV or Reserve teams.

Pro, College and even some High School players are being taught by coaches that coach for a living. Most devote 50-70 hour weeks to learning their craft and most have 10-15 years of experience playing the game. This compares to the amount of experience and time a youth coach can spend on developing himself as a coach, which for most doesn’t even allow for

Mar 31

How to Play Football

Understanding the basics of the game of football first is essential to fully appreciated the benefits and the satisfaction it brings. These can be learned perfectly once you start playing the sport, but here are a few elementary things you should know about the game before you start playing. American football is a widely popular game in the United States of America. It is easily the most watched and followed game in the country, and you will see players emerging from each and every corner of the nation. This is a sport that has been around for many many years, and footballers are some of the highest paid athletes in the world. The rules of American football are fairly simple to pick up, and it’s easy to understand why millions of people love to watch this sport. It combines a lot of intense strategies and tactics with some hardcore physicality. The sport is broadcasted to millions, and therefore, the business model of the sport is a completely profitable one. The National Football League (NFL) is easily the single most broadcasted sporting series in the US. For beginners, all you need is a football and a few players to play in each side. With a little bit of practice you will soon master the game.

Rules of Football

The main objective is to score more points than the other team. Points are earned by making the ball pass over the line that is the ‘end zone’ of each team. Whoever gains more points at the end of the game will be deemed the winner. Points can be gained in the following 4 ways:

– By running over the line with the ball in hand (running play).
– By passing the ball to a teammate who has crossed the line (passing play).
– By kicking

Mar 31

NFL Referee Salary

In a professional football match, a seven official system is followed, wherein seven officials operate in the same field. Based on the positions and duties assigned, each of the officials is delegated with a different title: referee (or head referee), umpire, head linesman, line judge, field judge, side judge, and back judge. Recently, the National Football League has hired its first female referee, Sarah Thomas, 42 year old Mississippi native.

The main responsibility of the referee is to strictly watch and supervise the game. He has the authority to announce penalties and other unusual rulings. It is a reputable post that contributes a lot in deciding the fate of a football game. And in the profession of football refereeing, an NFL referee is considered the highest position. NFL referees earn significantly higher salaries than referees at all other levels. However, aspiring candidates need to gain several years of experience before they have any hope of getting a job in the NFL. They have to officiate at elementary, middle school, and high school games, or work for local governments, and the salary figures can be in the range of $30-$35K.

How Much Does an NFL Referee Earn?

– According to NFL, the salary of a referee was $149,000 p.a. in 2011.
– A new labor contract was signed by the representatives of NFL Referees Association and the league in 2012, and salaries of the referees were increased to $173,000 in 2013.
– These figures are expected to rise up to $189,000 by 2018.
– By 2019, the annual salary of an NFL referee will be $205,000. The agreement will expire after the 2019 season.
– According to CNN and CBS Sports, the 2012 agreement increased the base pay for rookie referees from $75,000 to $78,000, and veteran officials’ pay from $160,000 to $200,000, from

Mar 29

Highest Scoring NFL Game

The highest scoring game in NFL history during regular season happened way back in 1966, when the Washington Redskins defeated the New York Giants by 72-41 on November, 27th. This was not the first meeting between the two teams in that season, as the Giants had recently defeated the Redskins on October, 16th by a 13-10 win. We’ll take you back to when this historic NFL game was being played with our own take on how of commentary may have been.

Commentator 1 – “It is a fine day to be playing football and you are watching live from the D.C Stadium. The New York Giants will be facing off against the Redskins today and it is going to be a game to keep a look out for.”

Commentator 2 – “That is correct. The redskins will wanna skin the Giants alive for the defeat they faced this season in October. Let us wait and watch if they have practiced to perfection or will they again be at the other side of the fence!”

Commentator 1 – “Yes, it should turn out to be a high-scoring NFL game, with these two teams battling each other. There you can see the Giants coach ‘Allie Sherman’ pepping up his boys especially the newbie ‘Tom Kennedy’. ‘Tom Kennedy’ comes this way, straight out of from Los Angeles and I assure you, this young rookie will be making his folks proud today!”

Commentator 2 – “On this side of town, we have the Washington Redskins coach ‘Otto Grahman’, bringing in the new ‘Sonny Jurgenson’ as the quarterback, all that is left to see is if these boys have it in them to handle the NFL.”

Commentator 1 – “The first whistle of the match has been blown, and there starts the game! The Kennedy boy has taken the lead

Mar 25

What is Zone Blocking

Zone blocking is one of the two ways in which a team chooses to make space when they are on the offense in American football. It is a practiced maneuver in American football, which enables openings for the running players to advance in the game play. It also known as base blocking. When a runner who has the ball is running towards the end line to score points, it is necessary to try to clear the field for him and provide him with as much space as possible. One way of achieving this is man-blocking, wherein each team member of this individual attempts to tackle one player of the opposing team. Zone blocking is arguably the better way for creating empty lanes for runners during the play, as it gives them a general idea about which direction to run in. A better technical understanding of the game is required for this purpose, whereas man blocking requires players to be bigger in size and more physically intimidating. For this reason, it is said many times that zonal blocking tests the true tactical and technical abilities of a football team.

Basics of Zone Blocking
The biggest advantage of zonal blocking is that it is a proactive measure, in comparison with man marking, which is more reactive in nature. Man blocking requires one player to trace and follow another one all the time, and this can lead the opposing team to break up your plan and strategy completely. If there are tactical changes in the defensive team, then your team will also necessarily have to change shape. This form of defense does not have these limitations, as they are focused on giving each team member the responsibility of clearing up a specified area. Any opponent who enters that area should be tackled immediately. Since

Mar 20

Greatest NFL Players of All Time

Here are some of the greats who have made this game what it is today. The history of this wonderful sport would have been incomplete without their contributions.

5 Greatest NFL Players

Jim Brown: Born on 17th February, 1936, Jim Brown played for the Cleveland Browns as a running back. ‘Sporting News’ a sports magazine has deemed Jim Brown as the greatest professional football players ever. He has also worked as an actor. He made his debut in the year 1957, and played for 9 seasons comprising 118 games. His achievement of averaging 100 YPG (yards per game) also remains a challenge for rushers.

Jerry Rice: Born on 13th October, 1962, he is regarded as the greatest wide receiver ever to play the game. Jerry Rice started his career in 1985, and played for 20 seasons totaling 303 games. He holds the record for the most catches (1,549), TD catches (197), and receiving yards (22,895). Rice was part of the Pro Bowl team 13 times.

Joe Montana: The career of Joe Montana spanned for 13 seasons, in which he played 192 games. Born on 11th June, 1956, he was known by many nicknames, including ‘The Golden Great’, ‘Golden Joe’, ‘Joe Cool’, and ‘Comeback Joe’. He received accolades from reputed sports magazines, including ‘NFL Most Valuable Player’ (MVP) from ‘Associated Press’, and ‘Sportsman of the Year’ from ‘Sports Illustrated’, both in 1990. He also received the ‘AP NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award’ in 1986. The winning drive of Joe Montana in the Super Bowl XXIII will always be remembered by his fans.

Lawrence Taylor: He played for the New York Giants at the position of a linebacker. Lawrence Taylor was born on 4th February, 1959, and comes from Williamsburg, Virginia. He was amongst the top defensive football players of his time. He became the

Mar 18

Football Helmets for Kids

Once your kid has started playing football, one of the most important things you need to do is get a helmet for him. These are important not just for the safety of the child but also for making the child feel like a real football player. When the child is wearing the complete helmet and football gear, he/she will inevitably play better and take the game more seriously. It lends a more professional touch to the child’s game.

American football, by nature, is a contact sport, and many parents are daunted, letting their child play the game at a very young age due to the inherent fear of injuries. This can be viewed as a pressing concern, because having a protective padding on vital sections of the body does not necessarily preclude injuries. However, a sound counter acting measure greatly reduces the severity of injuries as far as possible. As a parent, protection of their nipper while playing, especially minor football, which includes physical percussion ranks high on the agenda of their daily schedule.

Educating the Kids Important Aspects of the Game
As a parent, advising the kids about the possible risks and dangers of the sport is needed. They should be well aware of the consequences they could face, before they start playing youth football. Prudence in counseling a child is advisable to avoid the possibility of evoking bias against the game. The whole point of educating them about the possible dangers is to ensure that they adhere to the rules of the game, do not hurt anyone on purpose, and also don the right equipment and safety gear while playing. After all, there is a reason why there is so much safety gear involved for the sport of football.

The more coaching and training you give your kid, the better prepared

Mar 18

How to Get Faster for Football – The Best 5 Exercises for Football Speed

To get faster for football and increase agility on the football field, you need to be very careful about which exercises you choose to use to get quicker. The wrong exercises will not only NOT make you faster, but can actually make you slower! There are literally thousands of exercises out there…how do you know which to use to get faster?

Magazines, web sites and self-proclaimed experts are constantly throwing new, odd-exercises at you, claiming they’ll help you get faster for football! But, the truth is, the basics are what give you the biggest speed increases on the football field. We are after football speed, not simply track speed or improving our testing numbers!

Remember, you only have so much time to train so we can’t waste it on exercises that don’t produce results! Here are the top 5. Use these and you’ll get faster in record time!

1. Box squats to Get Faster for Football

Box squats are king of the football speed training hill. If you want to truly get faster for football, do box squats. A lot. They build raw strength in the glutes and hips and dynamic strength in the glutes and hamstrings. This is especially important for football where the game starts from a dead stop and can often be played in a stop-and-start fashion. Think of how a running back sprints to the hole, gets to the second level, stops, makes a move, and explodes again. This is the kind of explosive speed box squats build. And you can also use box squats as a dynamic effort movement, thus improving your rate of force development (maybe the most overlooked aspect of football speed training). Honestly, if you want to get faster for football but neglect developing your RFD, you are wasting your time!

2. Conventional deadlifts

Deadlifts are the most

Mar 18

NFL Player Salaries

Founded during an informal meeting in an automobile showroom in 1920, with just 11 teams, the National Football League (NFL) is currently the largest professional American Football League across the globe. Currently, 32 teams from across the United States participate in this annual 17-week competition.

The league is divided into – National Football Conference (NFC) and American Football Conference (AFC), each of them comprising 16 teams, divided into 4 divisions each. Each team is allowed to sign 53 players, of which they are allowed to keep 45 players ready every week.

The National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) is formed by the NFL players to negotiate their salaries and NFL contracts. All NFL players are members of this association. This contract is known as the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

Regarding the top NFL salary by teams, the New York Giants have spent the most on remuneration of its players since 2009 to date. They are followed by Miami Dolphins, Houston Texans, New Orleans Saints, and Chicago Bears, in that order.

Factors Determining the Salaries

An NFL player’s salary is termed as any compensation in terms of money, investments, loans, property, or any other asset which he may be presented with, apart from other benefits like insurance and pension. The following factors are considered while determining the salaries:

The Tier the Player Belongs To
For the purpose of negotiating their contracts, the players are divided into either of the three tiers by the CBA:

New players who have just been included in their respective teams, and haven’t completed their first year as yet.
Players having completed playing three full seasons in the league, and their contracts have expired.
Players having completed four or more seasons in the league, and whose contracts have expired.

Players belonging to each of the three tires have different rights to negotiate their salary with

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