Focusing on special team drills is probably not high on your priority list for coaching youth football. I can understand but Special Teams in youth football is an area to excel at and take advantage of those thoughts by other youth football coaches not focusing on the kicking game.
Special Teams and the kicking game may take up 10% of the overall plays in a youth football game. That’s a significant number of plays to leave up to chance. Especially since my team averages about 1 onside kick recovery per game. That really helps the defense and offense win the game, especially against a tough opponent a special teams turnover is an advantage we all want to exercise.
Every practice we have our kickers kick 25 kicks to targets on the field. On Special Teams practice days we have everyone do the onside kick catches to make sure everyone is ready to catch the ball not just the receivers. We also do walk thrus on each special team package. We leave nothing to chance. If you do not practice a skill through drilling then your players will not know what to do in the game. You must communicate and teach them in drill practice.
Special Team Drills
- Onside Kick Receiving
- Team Walk Thrus
- Long Snap and Receive
- Lane Running Kick Offs
- Punting and Catching
- Extra Point Snaps, Bobbles, Kicks, Fakes
- Fake Punt Plays / Dropped Snap
- Kick Return Traps / Wedge / Block #s
- Kick Offs and Shifts
- Kick Off Contain Walls
I am sure you can think of other special team drills. These are the ones we use in our practices. We usually spend 45 minutes to an hour each week on special teams. That’s about 10% of our practice time.
Drill to perfection.