Coaching your defensive players to block destruct can be a big challenge. Football always comes down to blocking and tackling. Not being able to defeat a block is a problem.
Figuring out how to teach your athletes to slam into another player, especially one bigger than they are, is a huge task. Maybe there’s a better way? This week’s JDFB Quick Clinic looks at how to coach better block destruction.
Styles of Block Destruct
There is more than one way to skin a cat. And more than one way to defeat a block. Some coaches are fully committed to one style. Others try to teach them all.
You can teach the shock and shed block destruct with the hands. There is also the flipper or ‘big surface’ block destruct. Or you can teach a simple rip move.
While I’ve tried to teach them all, in the Coach Simple philosophy that just does not work. For a number of reasons, we settled on the rip move.
Block Destruction is Not Natural
When I was coaching and recruiting at the Junior College level, we looked long and hard for Linebackers. While there were lots of kids who could run and tackle, I rarely saw great block destructs on film.
That told me two things. Number one, you do not have to be a great block destruct teacher to have great high school linebackers. These kids were all excellent players or we would not have been looking at them. It also taught me that most coaches were struggling with the same thing I was.
Fighting Natural Human Reactions
The problem with teaching block destruct is it is not natural. It goes against everything you know as a human to slam your body into another, larger object.
The rip move was the solution that worked best for my players. Ripping past the big, hulking lineman coming at you made more sense than going straight at it.
There are still big collisions. Rip moves are not designed to avoid contact, but to minimize the contact surface. Someone watching our film probably would not know that the Linebackers were only taught the rip move.
My school of thought is not unique. It is also not the only one. But listen to this episode of The JDFB Quick Clinic to find out more about how we attacked the block destruct problem.
Where to Go From Here
Learn how to teach the rip move, the 3-man rip drill that I talk about in this podcast, and get 5 complete defensive systems right now.
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