Taming a wild 7 tech/C gap defender by Steve Calande While the 7 tech defender seeks to attack the tightend and neutralize the down block he may also squeeze down sharply into the shoulder/neck of the offensive tackle in a pinch call. He may also loop around the outside in an exchange with the olber/de to his outside.
Any time a defender is aligned in an attempt to play INSIDE ARM FREE in the C gap we refer to him as a "7 technique" defender. His alignment can vary from inside shade of the tightend to a more tightly aligned C gapper . A true "7" is going to seek to ATTACK THE TIGHTEND rather than penetrate the C gap. Why attack the te? To prevent a short flank on down blocks. In some cases the alignment is an attempt to dictate to the offense "you are going to have to have your tightend block me one on one today" however THAT SIMPLY ISNT THE CASE WITH THE CALANDE DOUBLE WING SYSTEM. The alignment can also be an attempt to prevent the tightend from escaping on an inside release on trap plays. This is especially effective against teams that have their offensive lines crowding the line of scrimmage. In my system we of course have our offensive
line as far back as the rule allows.
Now, typically a 7 tech player will strike the Tightend with either a flipper/forearm while stepping into the tightend and defending the C gap. This striking blow is meant to neutralize a down block while allowing the defender to squeeze down on the C gap from outside in. The blow is also meant to disrupt a pass release or a trap release as I mentioned earlier.
What we seek to do throughout a game is to place the 7 tech defender in assignment conflict and work him over with a variety of blocking angles and combinations. We must be able to double team him, cut block him, down block him and drive him to the outside with a fan block.
Lets examine a few ways to attack and REALLY FRUSTRATE HIM with the double wing system. Using the GOOD GOD system allows us to call " Ray 36 Power" and put the wing on the line of scrimmage. The tightend (6 man) is the man we are running at so "he must be G.O.O.D" and will apply his good rule. He is our DESIGNATED POST BLOCKER and will post block the 7 tech with his hat aiming inside while the wingback who gets ON THE LINE OF SCRIMMAGE and in a 3 point stance will bracket the defender taking his outside half and running wildly thru it. The posting te and the king pin block by the wing back function to drive the 7 tech off the ball and into the linebackers. This forces the linebackers to have to RUN A HUMP as they scrape to the ball on our power play.
Now, after a few "36s" the 7 tech defender will more than likely be heavy on his hands in his determined effort to penetrate the double team and hold his ground. Make no mistake that his coaches and his teammates behind him will be quite frustrated if he remains ON SKATES being blown off the ball. ( and of course youd still be running your power right over him time and time again)...Now, once you have him playing fiercely tough vs the double team you have a few options.
1) call a wider trap - in my system we can trap at 0/1 which would be inside of a 2 tech (player head up on the guards) or we can trap at the next hole out trapping the first man past the B gap such as this 7 tech defender in a 4 or 6 man line for example. So, we call "Ray 42 Trap" and the te and wing again make it appear as if the double team is coming yet again (complete with the wing being on the line of scrimmage of course to add to the conflict) yet they release the 7 and allow him to fall flat on his face. Our pulling guard is coached to read that sucker on the run. IF that 7 tech were to squeeze down in recognizing " No pressure, TRAP!!!" then the guard, aiming upfield will trap him. If the 7 tech were to penetrate and fall down or get too far upfield the pulling guard will simply trap at the second level. IN my system we also pull the backside tackle on traps to further hide the fullback and make the play look so much more like the power yet again. (And of course, IM all about more people at the point of attack so we might as well get that tackle there too!)
2) We can "power" the 7 tech or C gapper by calling 34 or 32 power (32 power eliminates all confusion and doubt if that player was a bit sloppy or inconsistent in his alignment because when we power at 2 we are kicking out the first man past the B gap!) - So, now the 7 tech doesnt know who he is going to get SNOT BUBBLED by...will it be the guard or the fullback? The fullback gets there in a HURRY! And the posse pulls thru the hole very quickly. Interesting for me and how it applies to my system is that I can call "Ray 34 Power" and the C gapper is double teamed BY THE TACKLE AND TIGHTEND and not the tightend and wingback! Now the defender is really confused, he cant be certain where the double team is coming from.
3) we can "SMASH" the 7 tech ...Smash is exactly like our power play with the exception that on the playside we are going to use the playside guard to do the kickout. He has a fantastic angle for that short trap. So, In any case, the 7 tech now has to worry about three pretty immediate blocking threats on top of the potential double team from the tight end and wing back.
4) NOw, we can also slow him down with a few cut blocks. IN my system our back side tight end does more cut blocking than some other double wing systems call for because we cut backside of ALL powers, counters and traps and smash plays. If we are running any of those plays away from a hard charging de he will be hacked down like the tallest tree! Now, even if he wants to "Read" or uses motion as some kind of key "watch the cut" he is still going to be VERY ANXIOUS and ANNOYED with us for taking out his inside thigh constantly on these plays. What this does obviously is get him playing lighter on his hands and again allowing our double teams to put him back on those skates!
IN addition to that conflict, there are some false reads that can futher complicate the 7 techs play. Many times he will think "Cut block - Play away!" but he will be INCORRECT! Hows that? Well, if we are running our shock and awe supersweep then the play side tightend will cut down the C gapper and the ball will hit playside. If the te was the read he will be out of position.
5) Of course we can log the 7 tech as well. If we run our BOOT PASS (aka waggle) and the 7 tech were reading the down block of our offensive tackle and squeezing down to defend trap of course he will find himself easily logged and hooked by the playside guard.
So, how would you like to play the 7 tech position vs a well coached, well designed double wing attack?
you will be :
DOUBLE TEAMED FROM THE WING AND TE
DOUBLE TEAMED FROM THE TACKLE AND TE
CUT DOWN REPEATEDLY BY THE BACKSIDE TE
CUT DOWN REPEATEDLY BY THE PLAYSIDE TE
KICKED OUT BY THE BACKSIDE GUARD
KICKED OUT BY THE PLAYSIDE GUARD
KICKED OUT BY THE FULLBACK
LOGGED BY THE PLAYSIDE GUARD
DOWN BLOCKED BY THE TE.
How many high school or youth players do you know that have been well trained in coping with all of this while still recognizing the blocking scheme, shedding the block, finding the ball, giving hard pursuit, breaking down into a good football position to make a play while multiple lead blockers sheild the ball carrier.
The answer of course is VERY FEW.
I am available to answer questions about this topic at any time.
Taming a wild 7 tech/C gap defender
by Steve Calande
While the 7 tech defender seeks to attack the tightend and neutralize the down block he may also squeeze down sharply into the shoulder/neck of the offensive tackle in a pinch call. He may also loop around the outside in an exchange with the olber/de to his outside.
THE MAGIC BULLET
THE DOUBLE WING OFFENSE
by Steve Calande
Since 1999 I have been absolutely in love with the double wing offense. Its what I know, Its what I love, Its what I do!
Why? What is it that makes me so passionate ( obsessed) about a silly looking formation that has no line splits, a hidden sniffer of a fullback and a pair of wingbacks and a blocking quarterback? What is it about this offense, so unusual and different that it will NEVER be seen on Monday Night football?
Some say there is no such thing as a "Magic Bullet" offense. That may or may not be the case FOR THEM, however FOR ME personally, I do strongly believe that the Double Wing offense gives me the best chance to win games with the kinds of kids I expect to coach each year.
I love smashmouth power football, a meat grinder of an offense that presents an attitude, swagger and never say die approach to running the football.
What I like about the double wing offense can be explained by first examining the formation itself.
I love the 10 gaps that we give the defense to defend. I love the threat of four immediate receivers and something I really like is BALANCE and that balance includes TWO FLANKS. The two flanks (two wings) and complete balance is what separates the double wing from the single wing and creates my passion for the double wing offense. I love single wing football however the double wing has that balance and the extra flank giving it the final nod when it comes to my personal choice of a favorite offense.
Another thing I really like about the double wing is the team approach, its not the quarterback and 10 other guys, nor is it a tailback and 10 other guys...its a true 11 man TEAM offense where everyone has a big role and every player is important to our success.
I feel strongly that this offensive package more than any other can be executed by very average athletes because its got more to do with the sum of the players than individual talent. I love the fact that we can put four runners, 4 blockers, 4 fakers and even 4 passers in the offense. I love the fact that I dont have to deal with the NFL ego types that play wide receiver. I enjoy seeing unselfish players win championships!
I really like the playbook I have put together as well. I have a very strong, well conceived rushing attack that can attack any of 10 gaps with brute force, great angles and superior numbers. I love the fact that I can get there "first with the most" and i can get there with "ankle breaking" misdirection and deception. "Trickeration" isnt gimmicky or grab bagging in my offense, its built right into my core tool box of plays.
...Back to the playbook or "Tool box" as I like to refer to it ...Its imporatant to actually be able to execute the plays in the playbook! I personally feel that too many guys rely on clinic speak and rely too much on what LSU and the Colts do when they design their own playbooks. I dont recruit or coach Division I athletes and I dont get to draft and trade like the Colts. I design my offense according to what I really believe high school and youth players can do! I design it knowing full well what youth and high school players can be expected to defend as well.
Now, I know that my double wing system is different from some of the others, That is simply because any coach that designs an offense will put his own spin on things. Its an art form every bit as much as it is a science. Our own personal "taste" and playing and coaching experience shape our vision for our offense. My offense hasnt changed "much" since 2005 however I would say that in the last three years that I am more open to a few things that were not in my original 2005 system. I have expanded my study in pass protection, the run and shoot passing game and put a much greater emphasis on using "log" tag and/or option off of the counter play to put defenses in a bind (particularly at the high school level)- I am also now a much bigger fan of the screen game then I was back in the early part of the decade. One thing I have never lost sight of is the concept of STICKING TO THE CORE and always remembering that the players knowledge and ability to carry the tools (execute the plays) is what is most important- way more important that having a huge playbook !!!
now, that said...
Its great to know that every time I design a play that I am actually designing TWO PLAYS if we choose to run it to both sides of our balanced formation! That ability to attack each side of the defense, forcing them to balance up is really a huge part of what I love about the basic double tight double wing set.
Its great knowing too that when I draw a block I know full well that my kids can ACTUALLY MAKE THAT BLOCK because my splits are not wide and the defense is already aware of how difficult it is to blitz our set successfully.
speaking of the line splits... I take advantage of the defense being bunched and maximize their frustration with our cramped formation! I think the absense of line splits is a HUGE ADVANTAGE for the offense when it comes to preventing penetration, sealing the line of scrimmage therfore trapping backers and blitzers. I also find it to be a huge advantage for the offense in that our pulls are so short even if the linebackers successfully "READ THE GUARDS" they are walled off so much faster than if it was a long pull for our linemen. Lets not forget that every play we run we can more than likely get a double team SOMEWHERE due to those tight splits! What I find is that teams are going away from loading the line of scrimmage (primarily due to being sealed off so fast on the powers or burnt so bad on traps) and going to more 4 man lines...this only facilitates our ability to create more double teams. We can often get our "double double" on the playside when we run our powers vs a "fourty" front. The double teams are a great equalizer for us, if our kids are not overpowering drive blockers, big strong and bad...then the double teams give us two average kids against their player creating one super block at the point of attack! This of course is the very reason the GOOD GOD blocking system was conceived. I simply wanted to ensure that I would get that desired double team at the point of attack and secondly I wanted to be sure that I could pin point WHO was in the double team as well as WHO we were double teaming and trapping! The system wasnt developed in a matter of hours but in a matter of years!!! In 2003 I used the GOOD rule only on counters...then over time and with some angst I finally decided to change my hole numbering system to allow the complete GOOD GOD SYSTEM to take form in 2005. Since that time I think my double wing system and playbook has really gone to another level. I am even more passionate about it today than i was in 2005 when I shared it with the world.
...In the future at the high school level I can see the use of four different types of motion..
ray and lee, that quick two step arc motion
rocket and lazer- the one step flat sprint motion to set up the split flow series
roar and loud- orbit motion for orbit sweeps(Mensing is talking me into it) and puts us in trips!
bruiser and blister- to help the fb and qb run game
but for now I am convinced that the core full flow and split flow plays are perfect!
I feel strongly that the double wing offense can put all eleven defenders in conflict like no other offense. I am sure the spread guys, the wing t guys, the option guys and the multiple I guys or west coast guys or run and shoot or air raid guys, power t, single wing guys etc all say that same thing. I would like to give some examples of how I can put guys in conflict very quicky with just my full flow muscle plays and my split flow series. I really feel that this is a complete attack that any high school can master and certainly many youth teams that have good coaching.
lets examine for a moment the full flow plays of the double wing versus a 6-1 cover two defense. (some might refer to it as a 63).
The defense shown has defensive guards aligned head up on our guards, perhaps they sltant to motion, pinch or even cross some downs. perhaps sometimes they go to the b gaps with the mike attacking the center. No matter, they are aligned head up on our guards in "2 techs". The defensive tackles are aligned from loose 5 techs to 7 techs or in the C gaps (you really cant expect youth and high schoolers to align in the exact spot every down even when they are instructed to!) - the defensive ends are aligned on the outside shoulder of our tightends initially but My guess is that before we are done here they will be outside or head up on our wings. Lets just say they are going to vary their alignment depending on the assignment (contain vs squeeze and spill for example), the corners are 2 yards outside of our wings and playing the flats and will also be in contain unless stunting. They may vary their depth from on the los to 5 yards off the ball, we expect that. The safety on each side aligns roughly over the tes 8 yards deep up to 12 yards deep depending on down and distance. The mike backer typically aligns 3-4 yards off the ball over the center and will stunt to motion or blitz the A gaps or simply scrape and flow. We will put him in a bind just like any other player.
We will start our assault on this defense (like any other) with an attack off tackle running our "Ray 34 Power" and "Lee 25 Power" plays.
The power off tackle play of our double wing attack brings more punch than any other offense known. We are going to get a double team on the inside edge, a great kickout on the defensive end and a seal block on the mike backer- and then three lead blockers thru the hole to either side. The single wing offense simply cant do it that way with the same kind of conflict for the defense because it has only one wing. The single wing is poetry in motion, our offense is ROCK AND ROLL in motion! Ill take rock and roll over poetry any day. No offense to my single wing brothers but lets face it, the ability to threaten the defense with this play, the hub of the offense is a real selling point of the double wing. The "riding the wave" image of our wings catching the toss and being led thru the off tackle power alley by those three lead blockers (backside guard, tackle and QUARTERBACK) is artwork in action for sure.
So, right away, we have the defense seeing quick two step motion...right, then right again, left and back to the right, left again, and again...over and over again, ...4 yards, 8 yards, 8 more...2, then 6 then 19...they cant stop the bleeding. The defense begins to cheat...the defensive tackle is being hammered and driven into the Mike backers path every time. The tackle becomes weary and tired of being on skates ...he puts his head down and begins to fight and claw and scratch the earth to hold his ground...The coaching staff and defensive captains are yelling at the defensive tackles (who yell back out of frustration over being cut blocked or double teamed repeatedly) and defensive ends for allowing the gashing of the defense at the C gap. The safety on each sides begin to chase motion like a kitten chases string and they begin to crash the c gap when it comes to them...The defensive end, tired of having his ribs bruised and battered will begin to hesitate at the line of scrimmage...the defensive guards, completely out of the action begin to play lighter on their hands hoping to stand up more quickly and pursue with more effect...
We have created conflict without even running anything other than the powers left and right. The quick motion is what I call an "alarm" for the linebackers, corners and safeties...they see the motion and without a doubt that "holy crap here it comes again!" alarm goes off in their heads. The younger the kids, the more likely that they have NO CHANCE of shutting off that alarm and they will be reacting to it faster and with more wreckless abandon.
the kids mean well, afterall they simply want to please their coaches and show that they have heart and guts. In the end, we will use this against them. Lets explore just one way to take advantage of the conflict caused by the repeated pounding, embarassing butt kicking from the off tackle toss power plays. The trap...Uh oh, that same defensive tackle who is being screamed at by his coaches and teammates for being driven into the secondary is fighting harder than ever to hold his ground and split the double team (just as he is coached to do!) Suddenly we exploit that effort and use it against him. These tackles might be Hercules out there and really are able to hold their ground versus a double team...but can they do that and also react quickly enough to squeeze the trap? We are going to find out. My focus remains on the off tackle area on the playside. lets just say that we are running "Ray 42 quick trap" now and what that does to this defense is a) puts a double team on the defensive guard that started to play light on his hands so he could chase the powers b) fakes the double team and traps the hard charding studly defensive tackle...worse, allows him to use his own low hard charge to fall flat on his face in our backfield as we run right under him where he once was. c) continues to stimulate that alarm but muddy the picture for the backer and safety and defensive end and corner. yes, here it comes again but not to the same spot! Now the fast flow is too fast and can lead to the safety and linebacker running right by the ball carrier. The way the Calande system traps are designed allows us to attack the CORNER with the trapping guard if the dt falls on his face. we teach that READ for our pulling guard. he simply continues to the second level. In addition, we do the same thing with the pulling tackle. So, as I look at this defense, I am getting a double team on the dg, into mikes path, he cant come under or the guard simply plugs his path, he can try to go over but is rudely greeted by my playside tackle and tight end who are both blocking "FBI" as he is the first backer inside. the playside wing attacks BS and "blinds" the playside safety with a high block, momentarily causing him to lose sight of the ball. he in fact has no clue that it was EVER HANDED OFF to the hidden fullback...just like the backside safety whos "alarm" had him on his horse running to help stop the power toss play...I think this play scores early and often if we block it well. On the backside the center has an angle on the dg, the backside dt is once again frustrated with yet another cut block by our tightend. he is purely disgusted and asks to be replaced for a down. how can he be asked to charge hard and low to penetrate a double team and also be asked to be harshly cut down this way. He feels wasted and out of the defense altogther when we run traps and powers the other way. When he sees the motion quickly going away this sets up an alarm in his head "Ill just wait for the cut block then hop over it, or Ill just play light on my hands and pursue the play"...conflict is developing...that simply little motion and the use of the cut and double team have him frustrated early on.
The coaching staff didnt do a good job of preparing him or the other dt for the abuse they are taking. they simply didnt explain that "chasing the pullers" wasnt enough coaching to get it done this week and the scout offense certainly didnt cut or double team any where near the way our offense does. The enemy simply could not duplicate our attack. Not even the basic toss and trap.
Now, lets talk about the Mike backer for a moment. He is "learning" that our center will block back on the toss and traps. He is in fantastic position to read this block and can quickly pick up on the pulling guard and tackle. Here however is his delema. How far does he scrape? How fast? He might scrape hard and fast and have the fullback run the trap right up the gut where he vacated, he might scrape too slow and get a shoulder pad in his ribs from the wing on a power or the tackle on a trap. He simply must be protected by the 6 men up front or he is ineffective. We will further cloud the picture for him later with the false key provided by our playside center blocks on the sprint sweep and shock and awe sweep. At the high school level we might even toss in a "wrong way" pull by one of our guards. (not really my style but Im always entertained by it)...
...already you can sense my confidence (its not arrogance, its confidence) in my offense. I am CONVINCED that I can block this or any other front with very average kids. What I need to do well is BE ANALITICAL when things dont go well. I need to quickly diagnose where the defense is being successful and find out what they are doing quickly. If I am sharp with my eyes and can tune out all of the random play call suggestions that the typical assistant throws out there ( "coach they got 9 in the box you gotta loosen em up") ("coach, we got to get outside") then I can make a decision to run the next play knowing exactly what I am trying to accomplish (other than score)- who are we putting into conflict and why? IF I am running anything other than my "ray 34 power" and "lee 25 power" plays then I had better have a darned good reason as to why! Why would I run anything less than my very best play at the defense??? Are they stopping it? if so, how?
I firmly believe this...and perhaps this will lead to me being the most hated online personality in the history of the internet...I firmly believe that this offense cannot be "stopped" when its coached correctly AND (dont forget this part) play calling is accurate based on what his happening on the field. I completely get that the offense can stop itself...ie fumbles, penalties, missed blocks, poor execution..thats true of any offense, any team, anywhere and any level.
What I am trying to say is that with roughly even talent (even if we are a bit slower) we should score on every posession. I feel that if we dont shoot ourselves in the foot we score. Sure, sometimes theres competing with the clock. That can be a problem. I have faced that many times in my coaching career, long drives...suddenly we are at the 25 yard line and theres only a minute and thirty on the clock...the attack has to change or we arent going to score. Not sure where to put that in the "getting stopped" file? Maybe I should say that I firmly believe that this offense can always move the chains.
Ill bet all coaches feel that way? I am not sure but I think that double wingers are just wired differently though when it comes down to play calling, clock management, and down and distance especially. For example, third and seven just means I only have to get 3.5 yards on each of my next two plays...not seven on my next. Know what I mean? I wake up in four down territory baby!
anyhow, back to the trap for a moment. Even our trap plays put a hurting on the defense. The fullback is a bull in a china shop with the big ol guard and tackle leading the way thru the alley now. hes got the advantage of deception too created by his hidden sniffer alignment and the assistance provided to him by that quick two step "alarming" motion.
now, to really drive a nail in the coffin we have added a bit of razzle dazzel to our trap play in that we teach and coach the fullback to PITCH THE BALL TO THE MOTION WING later on!! We teach it and I cant wait to see it actually happen. (Kids did it all of the time in practice but hang on to that ball like it was their baby in a game)...its about as crazy as I get with the football.
I said earlier that the DGs might begin to play lighter on their hands in an effort to chase the powers (or, for example, a dg might wish to cross face when the center blocks back on him) an thats when they become ripe for the double team on the wider trap play (42 and 43 quick trap and counter trap)...when they get double teamed a few times from our choice of running the wider trap they have fight back or they too are put on skates and blown into the secondary or into the MIKE backers lap.
I havent even talked about running Wedge on them to add to their pain and suffering. That certainly would be the choice if the dgs AND the dts are lighter on their hands or doing lots of looping and stunting for example.
The point is that we can place the DG under duress as well with double teams, traps and wedges and even frustrate him further with cut blocks from the center ( ie our center cutting playside on the sprint sweep and shock and awe sweeps)- Lets keep in mind that as we pick on the DGs we continue to pick on the des and the secondary as well.
The dts continue to experience the frustration associated with being cut when they are on the backside of the play or left unblocked to fall on their face playside.
I really like attacking a six man line with the wedge, short trap (40 and 41) and the longer trap (42/43) ...We are absolutely working over the defensive line in this defense. NOw, lets talk for a second about the use of our WIDER POWER as it relates to those defensive linemen. When we call our wider power the GOOD GOD blocking up front allows us to get our DOUBLE DOUBLE on those down guys. I like to bracket the dg with the playside guard and playside tackle, driving him quickly into the mike backer while securing any threat of an A gap run through. I like too how my "designated post blocker" concept tells my tightend (6 man) that he will post that dt and the wing will provide the pivot portion of that double team as we run that man off the ball vertically into the linebacker and backside safety path. To manipulate the alignment of the defensive end and to facilitate a better/quicker double team from the wingback we will step him up into his "wing on" alignment on the line of scrimmage. This removes the defensive end from the tes shoulder to the wings outside shoulder (typically) and extends the flank. Now, with "ray 36" and "lee 27" powers we have two playside double teams and completely solidified gap protection along the line of scrimmage since each of the inside men on the double teams keeps his "eyes inside" to prevent blitz or run thrus by the defenders.
Now, when we step up the wing on the line of scrimmage the defense will begin to be conditioned to that alarm thing again..."uh oh, here it comes again!" and again, we have to begin looking at how we can cause conflict. We can of course run the short and long traps with the wing on the los and it will only help stimulate the desired reckless response from the playside tackle who fears the double team. We can even get crazy and start thinking about running counters and counter cutback soon since we have the defense conditioned to the alarms.
First lets examine the simple wing counter and its application here. The two safeties and Mike backer are stimulated by the quick two step motion, the Mike is in somewhat better position to read the center and guards however he is in a somewhat worse position to get around the hump caused by our double team blocks. (this is a huge benefit to running a system like GOOD GOD that uses double teams rather than using some sort of track blocking scheme) - now, The defensive coach has probably already screamed "watch the counter" all week in practice, and several times early in the game. Just as kids become conditioned with a stimulus such as our two step motion, they can become immune to a stimus such as "watch the counter"...everyone in the stadium knows its coming and its still going to break for a touchdown at some point in the game. Its up to the defensive coach to give his kids far more coaching than " this way!!!" ( we heard that alot) as its probably way too late for his kids If he is telling them that. What he has to do is give them some good solid keys. Maybe a good key against SOME double wing offenses is to simply cross key the wings. ie, if the safety sees the wing come his way he stays home. Well, I make sure to cause some conflict for that key by running a bunch of plays where the wing comes back but never has the ball, the fb or qb keeps it. This causes some of that DECONDITIONING or immunity to the alarm that I spoke of earlier.
I suppose another somewhat reliable key is looking at the te. IF hes cutting the safety can MOST LIKELY chase that action to the other side. - I of course built in another one of those "ok, great, now I cant trust that key either" play into the offense by adding the counter keeper/option play. Even worse, my tightend cuts playside on the shock and awe sweep! oh boy. Now, the regular wing counter doesnt have as much power as my counter cutback play ...which is one of my favorite plays btw, but it does have enough deception and enough power to be relied upon as either a speedy trickeration play or a muscle play to pick up two yards when you need it.
The reason my version has enough power is two fold, first, the good god blocking system gets us that double team..even on a seven tech. My designated post blocker rule is going to have the tackle post that sucker and the te is going to double his outside half and we are going to double him off the ball. ( the point is that some dwers would have the tackle down block on the covered guard- and we might if the linebacker is really coming thru the a and b gaps on us) but we are more than likely going to blow that sumnof*gun into the lbers lap, lead with the fb and the backside tackle too.
Thats two lead blockers on an off tackle play WITH MISDIRECTION. Now, think logicially for a moment. Lots of I formation guys in this country will tell you that their "26 power O" is their number one running play...its their tailback off tackle with the backside guard leading. No misdirection at all and one less blocker than we have. Which play do you think is superior??? See my point? This play simply rocks and its always one of the top scoring plays in my offense. So, now any defender who was reacting to that two step motion like a kitten chasing string is in deep doo doo in trying to reposition himself to make a play against our counter play. Add to the fact that we can run that wicked counter to EITHER SIDE and again Ill say we have tactical superiority over a single wing team.
Once again, in disgussing conflict we can OUTSMART a defense that is LEARNING to recognize our counters by running a few variations of it. While the standard wing counter does what it is meant to do, eventually a defense recognizes the backfield action and can recover sometimes limiting the counter to 6-7 yards as it loses its game breaking effect. When we feel that we have lost that home run threat we then will change the counter that we use. ILL go back to the counter cutback next...Ray 35 counter cutback lets my best back carry the ball WITH MISDIRECTION and MORE POWER than his other counter plays...think about this for a moment...whats every I formation coach going to tell you he uses for misdirection? The good ol counter trey right?...ok, now think counter trey x 5. This play packs a wallop with just enough misdirection to destimulate the defense to that alarm...???what??? ok, so now they see the left wing go in motion...its either a) power b) trap or c) counter.....right? wrong...now its a freaking train wreck coming right back at you! What happens on the counter cutback belive it or not is a direct result of my experience running the balanced line single wing and putting in a kick arse "weak side" power play. Now, our blocking scheme is identical to the counter so it takes NO NEW TEACHING for our linemen at all, also, because we feel that the cutback play is slower developing then our regular wing counters we are going to bring more power...we are going to have the qb toss to the motion wing then plant and double team the de with the trapping guard. That rips open a hole in the defense and certainly puts a hurting on the defensive end. An added bonus is that if the de were to squeeze down with the tes inside release we can easily log him with the guard and the play easily turns into a cutback sweep of sort with the qb and fb and bst and wing leading the way. That creates certain uneasiness for any DC and his DES and corners. Now, back to the blocking...double on the dt, single the de, cut backside dt with the te again of course, pull the guard and tackle, guard kicks out with the qb and the tackle leads and wraps inside while the fb jabs as if kicking out on a power, plants and cuts back under the qb, thru the off tackle hole, running hip to hip with the tackle, looks for a second level kickout...now, heres a real key coaching point...with the fb kicking out second level and the tackle wrapping...youd be one block short if you dont have your non motion wing running right behind those two pushing on their backs...he splits them and the ball carrier is riding his back, and the non motion wing (pulling all of the way across the formation) makes this play a show stopper as he runs over the false stepping safety. that wings block is the TOUCHDOWN BLOCK on that cut back play. Now, if you have your wings in a two point stance your cutback play wont be quite as deceptive as mine. I have my wingbacks hidden in three point stances so that when I run cutbacks and counters they cant be cross keyed so easily. I dont want that safety and corner to see his "pull" ...until its too late.
Alright as I mentioned, the defense will begin to recognize a counter play and so will the coaches and players on the sideline...so here comes variation number three and with NO CHANGE IN THE BLOCKING at all. Now we are going to melt their little minds by running a counter criss cross (xx) ...In the Calande system these are three digit plays...ie Ray 325 counter xx...that means simply that the left wing goes in Ray motion, he (three back) gets the toss (mine is a toss for obvious reasons) who then gives to the two back who runs the counter to the five hole. Now, before I get too far past this...I want to cover something unique about my system. Lets say that the dt was FIGHTING OUTSIDE when we went to double team him on those counter plays. Well its as easy as changing the hole number..for example, against the sixty front where the dt was denying the angle by the te Id call the xx one hole tighter...Ray 323 counter xx gets the job done as we now place the double team on the dg and actually kick out the fighter in the C gap and his chum the de. We can do the same thing with the regular counter as well.
Now back to the mind bender criss cross...the defense SEES THE MOTION MAN WITH THE FOOTBALL which really is an alarm for anyone who has ever played football before...get the guy with the freaking ball!!! For Petes sake we sent him in motion and we gave him the ball...he must be running it?...nope. guess again. He hands it off and it goes off tackle yet again with two lead blockers...shall we compare it to the I formation counter trey or the power O again? I think not...magic bullet anyone? lol. Once again, both sides of the defense have to be prepared to face our powers , traps, three variations to the off tackle counter...how in the world do they do that in 3 days of practice and hope to be any good at it??? now, keep in mind that NOT EVERY DOUBLE WING SYSTEM has these plays in the arsenal. I do and most "Calandites" do as well. Those three off tackle counters all have the same blocking for the oline. All they hear is the hole called and the word "counter" and they know whats up. The backs get to practice this stuff on air for long periods, not even wearing shoulder pads while the oline is driving a sled or working double teams...if you have ever seen my practice tapes you are familiar with me saying "sissies" to my backs as they walk by ...its all in good fun.
Now,...so the defense realizes that they have to "sit and squeeze" at the off tackle hole. They want to take away some of my favorite plays ie our home run counter and our slobberknocker bone rattling counter cutback play...ooops DIDNT YOUR MAMA TELL YOU TO WATCH THE REVERSE!!!!! ? Thats right, my double wing offense doesnt just hit you off tackle with brute force but we send a huge posse around the bend on a reverse when you start squeezing down. Something I have to say quickly is that Coach Don Markham uses the terminology "reverse" to describe his counter criss cross play. I believe Coach Tim Murphy uses the terminology "reverse" to describe his regular wing counter play. I believe I have pretty good terminology here in describing my plays. A reverse for us is an OUTSIDE HANDOFF and has blocking different from our counter play that facilitates turning the corner with STUDENT BODY lead blocking. Having this play in the arsenal causes tremendous conflict for a defensive end who is repeatedly taught to squeeze down and wrong shoulder kickout blocks on the counter play...and heres why. Our playside tightend will block DOWN on a reverse. This is a key breaker as the de thinks "ok, motion from my side, down block on my side...squeeze and spill"...wrong Batman, you just got logged by our playside guard and now my qb has tossed to the motion wing and is aiming to log your corner who is also squeezing down. Just because its fun Im bringing my fullback, backside guard and tackle to the party just as "ray 329 reverse" gets rolling with the right wing being lead around the corner by 4 lead blockers. (want to compare this reverse to a reverse in any other offense? Even the single wing cant run this reverse to BOTH SIDES )- I have never seen a reverse engineered like this in any other offense other than the double wing. Can it be done?- maybe. To many coaches a "reverse" is one of those "trick plays" while for me its a standard part of the package to create conflict and manipulate defenders. We simply refuse to allow them to defend us the way they hope to.
Now, heres something fun a guy can do. I can run a NAKED REVERSE ...this is another key breaker. Just run "ray 34 power" but have the tag "naked 29 reverse" and now we again do that outside handoff with the two man running naked wide and deep to the outside. Have I ever done it? no. But the reality is that we COULD because it wouldnt take any additional teaching other than "hey guys, if I call naked 29 reverse...."...get the picture? that would punish a team for keying the cutting te, the pullers, the motion, the fb etc etc etc.
So if we called that play at the right time...i think itd work.
Alrighty then!!! So now the defense becomes aware that we can bring the ball back away from motion a few ways and will hit off tackle or even bounce it outside with the reverse (and we havent even touched on the boot yet)...but wait...one of my biggest home run plays...a play that was made "famous" by my 2003 fullback who rushed for a mind bending 302 yards and 5 tds in one half (a good chunk of it on this play)...Ray 43 counter trap...and Lee 42 counter trap...amazingly effective misdirection play against these even fronts. ( Id call 40 and 41 counter traps against odd fronts most likely)
- anyhow, back to the play and why its a great part of MY DOUBLE WING SYSTEM. Why every double winger doesnt run this play is beyond me...its killer. Now, the play looks exactly like a power for the first two steps ...The hidden fullback and qb will however mesh on their second step with the fb planting off his foot and taking the trap back against the initial flow created by the motion.
The two wings will actually create added misdirection by faking a counter criss cross (or reverse depending on what we have been running more of) and that freezes defenders allowing the fb to burst into the secondary with the lead blocking tackle escorting him. Its just your standard fb counter trey type play (Remember how so many teams had difficulty stopping Riggins back in the day?) yet we tend to hit it a bit tighter kicking the first man past the B gap...we could take it offf tackle if we REALLY FELT THE NEED TO GIVE THE BALL TO THE FB ...but that seems silly to me because if we wanted to run it off tackle wed lose that fb as the blocker !? duh.
Anyhow, the counter trap is a suuuweeet play. The two wings cross as I said but heres a final tweak to make this play have that "we need to score right now" effect. The NON MOTION WING becomes the pitch man for the fullback.
IF we run the play right the fb and non motion wing will be in relationship about 6 yards downfield. Unstoppable. A counter trey option play with the wings breaking ankles with their reverse fake. Rediculous to think that many defenses have had the opportunity to practice recognizing and defending this play TO BOTH SIDES in a weeks practice.
Now, i relate this play strongly to the single wing spinner where the spinning fb keeps the ball. That was my inspiration for creating the play in the first place. (NO, I am sure I am not the first person to run a counter trap, Im not that arrogant, however, I am the one who put the xx and option downfield with it to make it what it is for me today. ) (patting myself on the back because all those years of playing "electric football" really amounted to some creativity ha ha. )
Ok Ok, enough about that...the point is that the defense has serious conflict when it comes to 'watch the counter!!!" because they had better pick their poison...we are going to run some type of counter to the power play. They cant stop all of them and still hope to stop the powers can they? no way. Magic Bullet.
Oh, did I mention that I have a reverse pass and a counter keep pass in the playbook or we all should anyhow. Not as gimmick or gadget plays but as plays that we commit to as part of SERIES FOOTBALL. I was holding off on preaching series football until Id built up some examples of it. I would say I have done a good job of showing how these plays all compliment each other and can be considered part of the series that goes with the power play. ...and we arent done yet.
More than likely the defensive coaches are going to scheme hard to take away the powers and counters and trap too. They will recognize that the counter is averaging around 20 yards a carry and the power is probably clicking around 8-12 yards per...they will see the silly scoring percentage that the fullback carries with him. Again, they are going to have to pick their poison and its my job to give it to them. Lets talk about the next dose of poison for a second...the mighty wedge. We can wedge on first sound and just knock the living snottles out of the defense when they are bouncing around trying to stem fronts. They dont want to do that too often I can promise you. We not only run wedge as a mucle /attitude /swagger play but also as a home run hitting hidden ball misdirection play that resembles the counter trap. We run the wedge with that same xx action behind it and again it dulls the alarms (motion and cross keying) and its great too for catching a mike backer trying to quickly figure out why the center didnt block back and he didnt see any guards pull??? high hat flat back syndrome. Hilarious.
Now, lets get to some conflict for the defensive ends for a moment- I already mentioned the use of the reverse to create a false read (te blocks down, squeezing down by the de is treated harshly by the logging guard)- Lets talk about the defensive end and his ability to cope with both the power (kickout by the fullback) and the seal block by the wing (and a double team by the te and wing in a 5 man line) when we run sweeps.
More than likely the average DC is going to have his defensive end on the outside shoulder of the te and have him chuck the te to prevent a clean release. The problem for the defense becomes our TOSS SWEEP. "ray 38 sweep" and "lee 29 sweep" are every bit as deadly to the defense as our off tackle toss. IN fact, based on my experiences I think most teams prefer that we stick to our off tackle play. Once they see the awesome student body right effect of our 38 sweep, they often move the de a bit wider so that the wing cant slobber knock him inside.
Now, we can run 3 sweeps, each with minor blocking changes but Ray 38 sweep is by far our most commonly run sweep and it gives us both guards, the fb, qb and ball carrier all coming around the corner outside of that squeezing defensive end. The fb kicks the corner (or logs him and seals him inside giving us a touchdown alley betweeen that block and the sideline) and the wing reads that block. The two guards pull wide and deep looking back to the inside to man up on the linebackers. The qb tosses and pulls around the wings block looking to take on the alley defender (the near safety in this defense). Shall we compare this to a typical I toss sweep?...again, not only do we have more power, we can run this to EITHER SIDE so I do not have to worry about that "overhanging monster" player that typically stacks to the strong side of an I formation teams set.
Now, the sweep of course has a half back pass off of it, or we can simply have the qb and motion wing change jobs...we always release the backside te across the field so on the halfback pass off of this look the defense is often conditioned to ignore the te.
What happens when we run a few of these toss sweeps is that we often create that "alarm" again that we are going east west with great power...the defense begins to fast flow setting up the counters but also setting up the power alley attack once again. I build in a companion to my toss sweep in my play "ray 44 dog"...when the first two steps of a pair of plays look identical it causes quite a bit of conflict for defenders. we pull both guards on sweep...we pull both guards on dog, we have our fb step laterally on sweep...we have him step latterally on dog...the wings in motion and the qb action is identical on both plays... Now however if the de widens with the action (often influenced by the fbs first step) he is KICKED OUT BY OUR PLAYSIDE GUARD. - crud!!! shoulder in the hip and ribs. gotta hurt. the fullback slices off tackle now with the backside guard leading the way while the playside corner and safety over run the alley trying to help vs the sweep. this is a simple two play series that can really bother a defense. I love the dog play down near the goal line as often the defense never sees the qb give the ball to the fb. (note, never have the qb show the ball faking the toss...useless)
Now, if your qb is a fine runner you can also run a dog follow where the qb tucks and has TWO LEAD BLOCKERS in the bsg and fullback leading him off tackle. Nice lil play for a hard running qb. Of course at the high school level you will want to run option off of that dog play , log the de with the playside guard, then option the corner ...you have the qb, bsg, and motion wing running to the edge...
...You might also choose to put in a dog keep pass. (ie belly keep pass) - for more information on belly g option football see if you can get ahold of some syracuse playbooks from the late 90s? (I think)
Speaking of running quarterbacks, one of my very favorite plays for a kid with some wheels is our "ray 10 gut xx" We are going to use the ray motion to again get that flow going, the qb simply spins all of the way around in two steps, the fb again steps laterally as if going to the right, plants staying square and leads thru the A gap along with the left guard who "guts" around the center (fold block, very short pull) and the gutting guard and fb take out the linebacker (the mike in this defense is going to get smashed) - meanwhile the two wings cross again faking reverse or xx in the backfield...still want to cross key our wings??? doubtful. Now, one of the blocking tweaks I love on this play is to cross block my two tes downfield on the pair of safeties. can you envision this? Mike gets run over by the fb and guard, the center pries open the hole by driving the dt away from the A gap, the right guard is one on one with a dg who is fighting to the B gap anyhow due to the motion and initial action...the dts are turned out or simply cut down right now by the ots and the two tes release...the corners and safeties see the te release and also the wings crossing...THEY HAVE NO CLUE THAT THE QB STILL HAS THE FOOTBALL! Magic Bullet offense! Did the Dc even have a chance to cover this play with his defense during the course of the week? Did he even teach his kids that MY DOUBLE WING will bring some isos at them thru the A, B or even C gaps? Did they prepare at all for a running qb? Maybe. Calling this play at the right time can mean converting a 3rd and long or busting loose for a long td run. Its got more power than a pro I iso and much more deception and better down field blocking. Want to compare isos? This is why I cant stand hearing that the xs and os dont matter...bull! They matter, coaching matters and the play calling matters. A slow footed qb can still run this play for a 10 yard gain before anyone even knows he has the rock.
Btw, you can run that same play as a counter trap too to change the effect on the linebacker and dts.
So far this is a pretty convincing rushing attack isnt it? We have yet to cover the Rocket/Lazer motion series including sprint sweep, boot and trap/wedge/truck off of that split flow action.
Just to show that more simple conflict is created quickly and easily with two simple play action pass plays from our power series, - lets take a short look at the "power pass" - and we are only going to send out to recievers. Now this is a cover two defense and we are overworking both the corner and the safety with our repeated off tackle and sweep plays. I mentioned earlier that the safety would often fly up to support the off tackle area and perhaps even begin to align at only 6 yards depth (making the 6-1) look more like a 65.
Chances are that once this happens the defense has essentially sold out to stop the run and has begun to abandon their pass/run reads in favor of playing flow to stuff the run more quickly. In any case, with the power pass off of ray motion, our fb and tb will be the 7th and 8th blockers while the oline is in full slide away to the backside protecting the qb nicely. The te and wing will be sent out to attack the corner and the flats. Even for youth qbs this is a pretty simple read of just looking at the cornerback. If he comes up throw it to the corner! If he drops the flat should be open. 99% of the time Ill bet that the deep ball is there. and similarly the flat route will likely be open as well. Now, if you motion the left wing flat enough he can actually take the de by himself and you can send the wing on a deeper out while you slip the fb under the de to the flat...now you have a three layered flood. (7 man protection) which isnt that difficult once teams start squeezing instead of penetrating with their des. In any case, Im not pretending to be some kind of "Air Calande" passing wizard but this simple play is a mainstay of just about any double wing offense. You need to include the power pass.
My second pass off of this series of " uh oh here comes the power again" is our counter keep pass. To me, this is a throw to score pass play and I would like it very much vs any cover two look. In its simplest form we are going to fake the power and counter and throw the ball deep. We are even going to pull the guard to kick out the de to help sell it more as a counter play. the back that fakes the counter should continue his course and run a deep route, the two tes should run deep routes adjusting them on the run to hit the seems. We should end up with three deep receivers against a two deep secondary...all the while done with two run fakes, a hidden ball and false key on the oline. I like our chances to throw and score off of this. We still have 7 man protection against a 6 man rush.
powers at the 4, 5, 6 and 7 holes
counters at the 4, 5, and even 2 and 3 holes
traps at the 0,1,2 and 3 holes
counter traps at the same holes
reverse at 8 and 9
dog at the 4, 5 hole
power sweep at the 8 and 9 hole
flood pass off of the power
counter keep pass
theres a bunch of stuff for the defense to cope with. All of it is logical and sensible to recognize as TOOLS in the tool box, its series football. Each play compliments another.
Now, the defense might decide to morph into a 62. perhaps they want to put penetrators in the A gaps and linebackers over the B gaps and change to cover 3...
They will continue to do what they do, perhaps even try to rotate to motion into a cover two look. No matter, it just doesnt matter to me. one area we havent discussed much is a potential assault on the B gaps and this kind of bubbled defense (same with a 52 okie btw) is ripe for some ICE and BLAST plays that many double wingers neglect to install.
Look, isolation or lead plays are some of the simplest yet most effective plays in all levels of football. Why a double wing coach would refuse to install lead plays is beyond me.
I give you a couple of choices in my playbook and I like to use them both, certainly at the high school level I am going to get both installed because the blocking rules are the same on the playside anyhow.
now, lets examine my "blast" tag. Those of you that have read DWI 2 and followed my presentation on my BEAST attack understand what blast means and how it can be done (with some reps) in the double wing attack. Blast tells my linemen that we are going to part the seas with big on big/back on backer blocking. On the playside we want to tear a hole in the defense right at the bubble and steam roll the linebacker by sending the house and kitchen sink thru the hole. Want to compare my blast to that of a power I team? thatd be silly. A power I team or wishbone team sends TWO lead blockers thru the hole...guess what? When I call a blast play Im sending: fullback, playside wing, qb, bst and bsg thru teh hole...thats five men wedging into the hole. Want to talk about "accidental double teams?" In short the defense is going to have to make a pile. This is a true mass momentum play that exploits the B gap. Teams that have their dts, safety, lbers, de all consumed with stopping the toss at the C gap now have to contend with our toss play over the guard. We can also trap this if the OT cant handle the DT by himself. ie we can run it the exact same in the backfield but call "ray 32 power trap" instead of "ray 32 blast" for example. In both cases we are hitting that toss play very tight, vertical now with great power. If the dt wants to read we will hit that blast play, if he wants to dive then the power trap is coming at him. (we might just call it 32 power and send the guard thru the hole instead of trapping with him)
now, we can also use the blast tag at the 4 and even 6 holes if we so choose. I THINK that would be similar to what many double wingers refer to as a TUNNEL call. (?) Ie, lets say we wanted to run "36 blast" at that 61 defense. now, we are bob blocking the playside and the wing on the line of scrimmage would turn out on the defensive end. That allows us to lead with the fb thru the hole. You get the idea, we can block the toss play several ways and that only continues to add conflict for defenders who are trying to recognize the blocking in front of them.
ICE is similar to blast however it is designed to compliment DOG and sweep in that the the fullback attacks the B gap with two lead blockers (again, want to compare this to a power I or wishbone fb game?) ... the concept of the play is to part the seas, let the playside wing and backside guard just run over the playside backer at the B gap while the fb carries the ball and the rest of the defense thinks that the motion wing is getting a toss.....suckers...
this is EXACTLY WHY they double wing is indeed the "magic bullet" offense. What other offense do you know of that gives the fullback TWO LEAD BLOCKERS on a "dive" play. In fact, we dont even have "dive" in our terminology because the play is FREAKING WEAK. yes, id rather run some sort of lead (aka ice) play for my fb than a dive. Now,...that said I could also call a VEER and have my fb run a dive play where my oline blocked EXACTLY LIKE TRAP on the playside but the fb "dives" and hit fast and hard...no read by the qb , just a called give...
ie, center blocks moma
rg blocks gap on outside gap down
rt blocks gdb
rte blocks fbi
and we have 42 veer...no pull needed as the C gap defender is TOO LATE to close down on the B gap veer...get the point?
midline for us would be " 40 veer"...never tried it but certainly could at the high school level.
center man on man away
rg- gap down backer
rw- backer to safety (bs)
the defense will chase the alarm created by motion (here comes the power/sweep yet again!) while half of them sit on "here comes the counter/cutback/xx/reverse/ yet again...
theres just so much you can do....what can you coach?
NOW!!! lets get into the split flow series....ie our rocket and lazer motion...
now we are going to send the fb to one point of attack, the motion wing to another and the qb to yet another....
First of all, the prefix "rocket" tells our left wing that he is in one step motion to either take the ball or fake at the right A gap, the qb will boot left and the qb will attack the midline over the centers right butt cheek....doesnt matter who has the ball that much is consistent in the series.
Ok, lets examine the split flow attack
This stuff is huge, especially if you have a qb that can throw on the run. Its even more important if you have small fast wings that can turn the corner after running east west...
Ok, we are going to run basically 4-5 plays off of the series....
we are going to run:
rocket- 38 sprint
rocket- 40 quick trap
rocket- 19 boot
rocket- sprint pass
and then we are going to run
Lazer 29 sprint sweep
Lazer 18 boot
Lazer 41 quick trap
Lazer - sprint pass
we might also run "truck' or "wedge" with the fullback carrying depending on what is happening up front.
In any case, the split flow series certainly punishes a defense for keying either the fb or the qb. Typically on our powers and power sweeps our fb and qb take you to the ball, on the split flow series they do not take you to the ball.
Lets start with the sprint sweep....the sprint sweep is different from the power sweep in that we do not seek to kick the corner out, we seek to log and hook him right now with our pulling tackle. We expect that the sprint sweep will GET US OUT OF THE PHONE BOOTH and have us running wide and deep to the sideline, stretching the field horizontally as we run away from the squeezing de and squeezing corner and filling safety. I feel strongly that this play compliments our power attack. I feel strongly that it creates a sense of conflict for the corner, lbers, de and safety on the playside.
The timing of the play can vary according to the speed of the wings in motion. WE teach one step motion, that is I want the defense to SEE that the wing is in motion but its really only one step....and not necessarily full speed depending on the speed of that wing. Anyhow the basic idea is that now the defense must respect three possible points of attack. Both flanks and the midline are threatened by the rocket/lazer action.
This is quite different from Ray/Lee motion but can the defense recognize it???? doubtful...again, they have a week to practice and a week to try and recreate this with their scout offense. I maintain that they have little to no hope of actually recreating all of things we threaten them with.
Now, we can run our sprint sweep in such a way that it punishes corners who want to be active versus the powers. Ie, if the corner wants to attack the qbs second level kick out he will squeeze down RIGHT NOW when he sees motion...thats not going to work vs the sprint sweep because we PULL THE PLAYSIDE TACKLE TO LOG HIM ...ok, imagine if you will, the tackle and both guards pull, the defense is committing to squeezing down on the powers...the de is bent on wrong arming our power play...hes hooked right away by the wing, the corner gets logged by the tackle, both guards pull wide and deep....they meet safeties, the mike is bothered by the threat of the fb trap and frozen to the midline....we are going to turn the corner repeatedly. Sooner or later we will also run our sprint sweep pass where our motion wing throws over the top of the corner and safety who fly up to stuff the sprint sweep. ....now, the trap and truck and wedge plays...all off of sprint action accompanied by the qb boot action will slice thru the heart of the defense. The defense is simply divided into THIRDS in an attempt to defend the entire series.
Can they stop the spring sweep and trap and or wedge/truck and stil hope to be sound versus the boot pass??? I seriously doubt it. If a team is crashing and wrong arming and showing quick support with their corners then we can probably run our boot every single down if we decide to do that....
Bottom line is this, the Double wing offense, with its 10 gaps and tight splits, hidden fullback, quick motion and multiple double teams in its blocking schemes, its a great equalizer....it is in fact THAT MAGIC BULLET, THE GREAT SMOKING GUN of an offense...it does what no other offense can do.
I firmly believe that average players can look good.
poor players can look average
good players can look great
great players can look like all pros....
Y0u have to coach it, you have to know it, you have to live it....but its fantastic!
Is the double wing offense so great that I think its "the best offense?"- yes
ist it actually a magic bullet offense?" - well, I guess thats a personal question, I think it gives us the best chance to win with kids who arent otherwise likely to be quite so successful.
Can it be stopped? sure , any offense can be stopped but I think its more difficult to stop a well run double wing offense than any other offense I know of.
is my system different from others? I think so. However I have learned a few things from the other systems and plan to use some of what I have learned to make my own attack better than ever.
Commit To The Core Of The Double Wing Offense
by Steve Calande
The Double wing offense can best be described as extreme power football, misdirection football, series football and a football offense with attitude. The offense has grown in popularity obtaining a “cult like” following while also stirring up hatred in those that must defend it. The offense is also probably the best supported offense on the planet due to the internet and websites like www.doublewingonline.com , “Double wing for dummies” and my forum, THE WAR ROOM . The Double wing offense, (meaning the formation has two tight ends, no wide receivers or flankers, a fullback in the “sniffer” alignment and 0-6 inch splits) is not really a complicated thing at all. It’s based on the idea that the compressed formation (cramping your opponent’s speed and making blitzing nearly impossible) presents 10 gaps and two balanced flanks (forcing a vanilla approach to defense), quick motion (used to establish “series”) and a ton of power at the point of attack. Multiple pullers and double teams are what make the Double wing so potent. It’s the many coaches who wish to prove their ingenuity and creativity that complicate this thing. Many want to show “different looks to the defense” or “create alignment conflict” or “give the defensive coordinator something else to prepare for” all the while simply stealing practice time from their own core plays. With every subtle change, if a puller or double team or ability to force the defense to defend the core plays to both sides of the formation is lost, the offense simply loses its luster. The purpose of this article is to stress the importance of commitment to the core plays of the double wing offense.
Don’t fix it if it isn’t broke
This I cannot stress enough. There are many who tinker with the alignment and blocking schemes and play series until they can no longer say “we run the double wing”…what they should say instead is “we line up in a double wing formation…sometimes, and we run SOME double wing plays ”. What is it that causes us to tinker? Is it lack of faith ? Is it fear of success? Is it a belief that 8 in the box will stop the double wing even though we know that’s been proven to be ineffective time and time again? Is it boredom?...maybe. Is it the desire to improve upon a record setting attack? If I am not mistaken, the Double wing offense holds scoring records for both the 14 game high school season and the 10 game high school season. Fact is, the double wing works just as it is. There is nothing to fix. So, I submit to you that if you have tinkered or are tinkering you may in fact be doing more harm than good. My guess is that you have not committed to the core enough to “get 8 yards per carry on your power play.” Did your team break the scoring record?.... If not, I suggest a back to basics approach. Get foot to foot, move that fullback up tight, use short quick motion and run the core to score! You must believe and you must commit or you are robbing yourself and your kids. Don’t help the other guys!
What is the core?
Each coach is surely entitled to develop his own core plays and is certainly encouraged to do that based on his talent, for me personally the “core” is based on the power off tackle (often called superpower, toss, pitch or just power) and it’s counter punch and knock out punch plays. What is most critical to the success of any double wing attack is the success with their power play. Think of it as a championship fighter with a great jab. You absolutely must be able to make that play go. The main thing is keeping the main thing, the main thing! Next time you think “we need to install such and such a play” try practicing your power to the left instead. Run the power and run it well to both sides. Make sure you can run the power against crashing des, spilling des, blitzers and froggers, pinpoint it both inside and outside of a tough 6 tech or 7 tech. Practice your power play against 14 or more defenders in practice, push your kids to move the ball against more than 11. Prove to them, your staff and yourself that it’s UNSTOPPABLE! Then choose plays that compliment it directly. That is, the fact that you can run the power play(jab) well forces the defense to go hard to defend it TO BOTH SIDES opening up the rest of your core(knock out). Failing to establish the power play is akin to an option team failing to establish the dive phase of their attack. Most often our talent has dictated a core offense based on:
Power, counter, trap, sweep and wedge… AFFECTIONATELY KNOWN AS “The Fantastic Five"... in short:
Power is the hub of the wheel, the off tackle hole is the hardest t defend ando has been for 100 years…
Sweep directly keeps the defensive end (or contain man) playing honest…
Trap directly puts the defensive tackle who is DOUBLE TEAMED on the powers in conflict and punishes him for fighting to hold his ground
Wedge is an attitude play that keeps defenses from playing high and reading or slanting to motion.
Counter is necessary to punish fast flow teams for running with motion.
…taking a look at my terminology, our “core” is:
(left wing is 3 back, fullback is 4, right wing is 2 back)
36 and 27 power ( hits outside a 6 tech)
34 and 25 power ( hits inside a 6i tech)
34 and 25 counter (several varieties including xx, cutback or regular wing counter)
40 and 41 quick trap (traps 2 tech and wider)
42 and 43 quick trap (traps 4i tech and wider)
38 and 29 sweep (we run ours with a toss and qb lead)
41 and 40 wedge (with and without XX action)
Now, what other plays could be part of our core? If we had a great runner at fullback we might include the “G” or what we call “dog” plays (fullback off tackle) or if we have a great runner at quarterback we might run more “gut” plays (qb spin and keep up the gut with gut blocking, xx action in the backfield)…always keeping in mind that the more we add to “the core” the further we get away from what we want to do…bludgeon a team with the power plays! Every “series” we install should open up our power play, not steal practice time from it. What you won’t see us do is morph into a veer option team or a wing-t or spread team. Nor will you see twins, trips and slots. If power right isn’t going, expect a healthy dose of power left. We will run traps or sweeps or counters to open up the opportunity to run the ball off tackle with our powers. If we are running anything other than a power play it should be BECAUSE THE POWER PLAY HAS CREATED A WEAKNESS FOR US TO EXPLOIT SOMEWHERE OTHER THAN OFF TACKLE. We will go for the knockout only when the defense is committed to defending the jab. – Coach Calande
10 SIMPLE WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR DOUBLE WING ATTACK
by Steve Calande
1) Improve execution and performance by utilizing practice time wisely. Eliminate all drills that are not directly related to what your athletes do on the field.(Have you ever seen players do “Monkey rolls” on the field?) Prioritize drills and give more time to the skills and drills that make the plays work. For example, your qb and center should get many reps in the exchange. Spend less time on cals and agilities and more time on blocking, faking, timing, alignment, assignment, tackling, creating takeaways and ball security. All coaches are blessed with the same amount of time to prepare for the season. Our use of time is the one thing we can control. Go into each practice with a scripted plan. I suggest making a schedule where each practice is broken into increments of 5 minute periods…a 2 hour practice will have 24 periods. Have drills planned and equipment gathered before hand. Have water bottles at the drills stations so that players don’t need scheduled (wasted time) water breaks…they can drink in line between the many reps. Design drills and utilize coaches and captains to minimize a lot of standing around by second and third teamers. (use trash cans and cones instead of bags and bag holders when you can) Increase the amounts of reps you do on the core plays (your bread and butter) and decrease wasted practice time by eliminating “junk plays” from your playbook. By definition a junk play is any play that you spend valuable practice time on but end up running one or two times a season.
2) Know what to practice. A wise man said “A coach who scrimmages a lot doesn’t know what to practice”. I suggest 10-20 minute scrimmages and this does not have to be full contact. It recommended that you go thud tackling but live blocking to save time that would otherwise be spent on un- piling. Use a quick whistle and coach on the run. Time in the huddle should be absolute minimal, say 5 seconds. Coach one or two points and move on...further teaching should be saved for run/pass skeleton time. Without a doubt the single most useful coaching aid is a white board. A close second to that would have to be a video camera. Video doesn’t lie and while coaches can catch and correct a lot of things, the double wing offense has details that must be coached up. Video review of scrimmage time is extremely useful to the players and staff. Scrimmage hard, coach hard, teach on the run…review the scrimmage footage and pick 2-3 things to really focus on the following day. Think of scrimmage time as a quiz before your weekly test (game). Each scrimmage should test the offense in a different manor, for example, one night use crashing wrong arming defensive ends, the next night use crabbers and grabbers and froggers diving into your olinemen. Make sure that you mix in blitzers and stunts to keep your olinemen awake for that inside gap protection. Do not scrimmage live before your team is ready! Build confidence, don’t destroy it. Typically defense moves along faster than offense and many young DCs will want to prove what great coaches they are by stuffing the dw early. Once you have the core plays in and running well, that same DC will be embarrassed. No live scrimmaging until power, sweep, counter, trap and wedge are all installed and well oiled. Don’t dilute the double wing with a lot of nonsense.
3) Absolutely run “power hour” at least once a week for each week before your season begins. Power Hour is just what the name implies, your team runs nothing but powers left and right, live, with the video camera going for one full hour. Set up the offense at the 3 yard line and line up every able body you have for the defense. For some of you, you will need to put half a defense on either the offenses left or right and they a) know its coming and b) have to stop it. Others will have 15-20 kids that the can put on defense…yup, put em all out there and get them fired up to try and stop the power plays before a score. The offense will learn to trust the power plays, learn the true grit behind it and the kind of determination it must have to get those 3 yards every time. Try for at least 90 reps in that hour. (that does allow for time for coaching….the powers must go or the double wing is dead)..again, build confidence, don’t destroy it.
4) Perfect play drill - Run your offense against trash cans or cones or a defense made up of bag holders and shields, walk thru the play, jog thru it, then run it. When it looks perfect, rep it 5 times then move to the next play. Keep the tempo fast overall. Once a week, make sure you do this drill with the “second O”. They too must be battle ready.
5) Teach the backs to be their own blockers – You absolutely must have tough runners. They don’t have to be overly big or strong or fast but they must be taught to use the stiff arm or a forearm to deflect would be tacklers. They simply must be taught to get ONE MORE YARD on contact. Design drills to reinforce this concept. Insist that each back make one man miss on each carry.
6) Teach the backs to “block two” by making great fakes – I stress to the wings and fullback that they “block two” players by making a great fake when they are not carrying or blocking. They are encouraged to and rewarded for faking until the echo of the whistle. The difference between making the playoffs and taking home the trophy can be the amount of attention placed on faking. Simply put, good double wing teams hide the ball and carry out fakes. Poor teams don’t do those things.
7) Teach your backs to sustain their blocks! – We have all seen fullbacks kick out a defensive end only to see a long run stopped by the same defensive end chasing the runner down. We have all seen 3-4 yard runs that would have otherwise been touchdowns if a wing had been able to VELCRO himself to the linebacker for one more step. Stress the “Velcro block” until the echo of the whistle.
8) Know what to key…- Most coaches will (unfortunately) call a play and become a spectator. As a double wing coach it is most beneficial if you are able to call a play and know exactly what to look for. If you have called a power play you will want to focus on the point of attack to see what the fb/de collision looked like as well as getting a good look at the movement placed upon the defensive tackle. It is also extremely beneficial to have a good eyed assistant looking at the backside cut block and pursuit. Read your key just as you’d expect your defenders to read a key. This key will help you with your next play call. Resist the temptation to call plays based only on the outcome of the last.
9) Keep defenders in conflict – This really ties in with #8, if you are reading your key well you will call plays that target and victimize select defenders. Perhaps you see that a defensive end continually moves upfield…don’t sweep him and make him look like a superstar due to your poor play calling, run inside of him and kick him out and use his charge against him. When he cheats inside and becomes concerned with the power, that’s when you call the sweep…conflict. Same thing with the defensive tackle. If he is slow off the ball and you are blowing him into the linebackers laps with double teams, don’t allow him to make a play by calling trap when he is not trappable! When he begins to fight and strain to hold his ground, only then will the trap break his will completely. He will also likely lose trust for his very coaches who screamed at him to hold his ground.
10) Don’t panic - This I cannot stress enough. A two yard gain on a power play is not grounds to believe that “they are stopping the double wing, we need to spread them out!” The double wing power plays are designed to pound and pound and pound on a defense until the defenders are worn down and out. The dam will break and the defense will in the end, give up. You must be willing to pound the power play over and over again. Commit to 4 downs to get those 10 yards. Impatience and panic are two very big enemies to the double wing coach. When you call a play, have an assistant standing next to you. If you call anything other than a power to the left or right, have him ask you “why?”. Always remember that you are coaching against the kids on the field. Don’t be too hasty to give them too much credit. Finding the ball, shedding a block and making a tackle is a tall order for the average player. Make them do it more than once.
There are many other things a double wing coach (or any football coach) can do to improve his teams for success but I had just picked a few that seem to come up more frequently.