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TeeDub23

Flag Football Highlight Video

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That play at 1:50 is genius (and incredibly well-executed). Seems like the key is for the QB to sell it with his three-step drop and then roll out which he did well in this instance.

Question: I noticed the RB lined up with his arms behind his back. Curious as to your intent here. Is this to simply have him ready for the hand-off? OR do you line him up like that the first time you run it...and then a few plays later line him up like that again and then fake it? i.e. do you condition a key for the defense?

I'm definitely going to add this to our playbook. That was so fluid I imagine it takes a few reps in practice with the right personnel. Other than that TD, how well has the play worked for you?

Thanks!

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Yeah, that is a great "trick" play that we use to run when I played adult travel flag football. It works well at this age because of the misdirection nature of it. You can see where we line up in a tight formation and bunch up. I have my RB stand close to the line and QB and have them stand like they are blocking or setting a pick in Basketball with their hands cupped behind their back. When it is snapped, have all the kids flood right yelling and waiving arms to cause confusing on what is really happening. Then the QB is to immediately scramble to their right and pass behind the RB and drop the ball in their hands. The QB continues to scramble out to the right like he has the ball and is ready to throw the ball. The RB (blocker) stays their and does not move while all that is happening. Lettting everyone run pass him and after the QB. If it is done correctly, everyone will chase the WRs and QB and the RB is left with the ball behind them and in most cases can just walk in to the endzone.

We have not run it that smoothly. My RB gets nervous and starts to run, but it causes enough chasing that he has made it in untouched in both games we have played and has worked 90% of the time I have used it. I would say it is good for one time and can be run close to the endzone or extra point or even midfield where a 1st down is needed. Coaches might clue in to the play if you dont have a tight formation playbook. We actually have other plays we run from that same formation.

My son the QB also doesnt sell the scamble out as well and that sometimes can give the play away. If the QB can take the ball and look up rolling out while taking the ball in his left hand and drop it in their hands so the defense does NOT see, it is gold.

I am glad you enjoyed it. I have more trick plays, but they are more complicated and I havent put them in the playbook yet.

Terry

The fun part is that the kids LOVE the play and almost give it away everytime in the huddle because they all yell and get fired up.

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I'll introduce this play in our practice tonight. Last evening my son (our QB) and I practiced it with me being the RB. He executed it very well. I've worked with him for years on his foot work so he has three and five-step drops down. I think I'll simply "measure off" his three-step drop which will give me an idea exactly where to place the MR and allow the QB smoothly drop-back, hand-off and roll-out in one fluid motion. Luckily our RB is huge for his age, so this will help shield the hand-off.

I have more trick plays, but they are more complicated and I havent put them in the playbook yet.

Keep them coming. My guys are 9-10 but have all played together for many years. We play in a 10-12 league, so we rely on smart football to compete. Nothing is too complex for these boys as they are all pretty salty. Thanks!

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Also to share two trick plays that have worked well with us:

1. Assuming your QB performs the normal cadence of "Down, Set, Hut", toward the end of the game place a RB right on the hip of the QB. The QB goes under center, surveys the defense, and begins cadence. On "Down" the C snaps the ball, and the QB quickly hands off to RB. The rest of the team just stands there. Good short-yardage play. Obviously the defense is conditioned to the full cadence, so this gives your RB that extra few steps before defense can react.

2. We call this "Double Vision". We used to run this in 8v8, but it works in 6v6. Two lineman, two RBs, and two QBs. One lineman acts as "real center" and the other as fake center. Same with the QBs. The "fake" QB actually calls out the cadence. When ball is snapped both the real and fake QBs/RBs perform a hand-off going in the opposite direction. It sounds ridiculous, but you'd be surprised how many kids 7-8 year olds get thrown off by it.

Of course there are more dubious trick plays: variants of "wrong ball", putting a Center, QB, and RB on the line while you are in the huddle with the rest of the team and then those three run the play, etc. but we don't really call those (unless our opponents are wanting to pull out all the stops).

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Well, I have also been limited by the rules the youth flag leagues put in place. Another one that worked well in our adult flag league is to line up in a tight formation. Take your RB and line him up as far wide left as possible, more like a WR a step off the line. Keep in mind this was used in an adult league and we would always call out the routes for guys and change plays on the fly based on the way the defense would line up. So, the guy lined up wide would slowly start a motion down the line of scrimmage so that he would run behind the C but in front of the QB. QB would start yelling "Change up, Terry quick out, Jason curl!", etc. and maybe even turn sideways motioning to spots. The C would silent snap so that the guy running motion would catch it during all this change up. All the WR watch the ball and when it is snapped, flood right.

So, basically you have the D listening and watching the QB and you hit the motion guy full speed and typically he can just run in to the end zone on a sweep right (works well for extra points or short yardage plays). If the defense is lined up so that someone is in place to catch the sweep right, the motion guy could just pass over him to the WRs flooding right.

This tricked adult men, it would work like crazy in Youth. The reason I havent implemented it is that the QB cant run and since he takes the silent snap, he is considered the QB. Also, this involves a shot gun timing snap and I dont think we are prepared for that. I have thought about trying it and forcing the pass, but there are just too many things that can go wrong.

Let me know how it goes.

As far as having your QB take a 3/5 drop seems to work against the bunched nature of the play. Maybe it would work, but the trick is to have everyone tight so that the D cant see the ball being dropped in their back. If you take a 3 step drop, it gives the WR time to clear out and he is dropping back away from the wall. Plus, you need to get the WRs flooding right fast and the QB out of the pocket fast to sell the play.

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I love the 1:50 trick play. But if my very inexperienced team tried it, the ball would be all over the turf.

Also to share two trick plays that have worked well with us:

1. Assuming your QB performs the normal cadence of "Down, Set, Hut", toward the end of the game place a RB right on the hip of the QB. The QB goes under center, surveys the defense, and begins cadence. On "Down" the C snaps the ball, and the QB quickly hands off to RB. The rest of the team just stands there. Good short-yardage play. Obviously the defense is conditioned to the full cadence, so this gives your RB that extra few steps before defense can react.

We do something similar that 50% of the time gets us 10 yards, and the other 50% is a TD. Twins spread formation. The receivers stand straight up, sometimes facing backwards and waving to mom/dad. QB lightly taps Center on the butt to let him know he's ready. NO snap count at all. Center snaps the ball, runs one yard, half turns his body, and the QB flips it to him without even standing upright. It's got to be a quiet, quick, smooth snap-n-flip. We do try to ensure that the other team is in position out of fairness. The first time we ran this, the other team yelled: "they didn't say "Down, Set, Hut" and the coach yelled back at his own team "They.Don't.Have.To". Twice, the defensive coach thanked me, as it provided a teaching moment for their kids (watch the ball snap).

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As far as having your QB take a 3/5 drop seems to work against the bunched nature of the play. Maybe it would work, but the trick is to have everyone tight so that the D cant see the ball being dropped in their back. If you take a 3 step drop, it gives the WR time to clear out and he is dropping back away from the wall. Plus, you need to get the WRs flooding right fast and the QB out of the pocket fast to sell the play.

We tried this last evening in a team scrimmage, and it worked like a charm! I like the 3-step drop because it really sells the pass, and I want the defense to actually see that. Additionally, we are a very young/small team, and most of our opponents are a good six inches taller than my boys. Consequently, we've not had much luck with "wall-type" plays. Where I think I'm lucky, is that our RB is the only big player on our team. He's probably a good six inches taller than our QB (and he's build like a tank) so you can't even see the QB behind the RB--it's almost comical.

Of course I could not resist a few plays later to call it again but to only fake it. I really exaggerated the prep of the play (went as far as pointing to where the QB will go behind the RB, etc.). When we faked it--1/2 the defense chased the RB and our QB had his pick of receivers to hit running the slant.

We do try to ensure that the other team is in position out of fairness.

Good for you! I still get irked when I see teams try to run the hurry up, essentially taking advantage of an inexperienced team trying to get set on defense. We could easily go no-huddle the entire game if we wanted to, but it's just too easy and can't bring myself to do that unless we are losing in a Championship game or something. It's just silly to see coaches out there screaming to their team "Hurry up! Get the play off before they get set!"

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Great discussion. I agree on letting them set up and we do have a no huddle offense where we spread out the defense. I stack 2 WR as far wide on both sides as possible. The stacked WR are probably 5 yards behind the first. So, in the middle of the field is just the C and QB. We call this spread (duh!) and basically run flys and follows. The front WRs run flys. The stacked WRs wait a second and then follows on a fly. This isolates the CBs. If the CB drops, hit the follow. If the CB stays to cover the stacked WR, bomb to the fly down either side. We read the defense and adjust to the best side.

If the defense brings a lineman over to cover the stacked WRs, it spreads out the middle of the field alot. We will call audibles and have the front WRs slant quickly and get the lineman on their back hip and hit them on the quick slants. The stacked guys still fly down the side. Sometimes the CB will chase the slant and leave the follow open for a fly down the side.

If they move safeties over to compensate for the stacked sides, we pump fake to the side and hit the center on a fly down the middle. At the 7/8 age group, no teams have ever seen this and do NOT know what to do. They cant stop it.

The only downside is that you have to catch the ball. You have to have a good QB and good WRs. You drop a couple balls and you are now looking at 3rd and long.

Anyway, we run this no huddle hurry up, but I always let the defense get set and sometimes I have to yell "wait" until the decide on what to do defensively. Also because we read the defense and take what they give us, I want the kids to see the holes and how they are lined up. Then we might adjust the routes.

Not sure why I got off on that tangent, but I love me some Spread Offense.

Oh, I have tried the fake behind the back handoff and found that it is hit or miss. The kids at this age just do not compute what is going on fast enough and I think it is too "strategic". The go for the QB way more than the RB.

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