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Thread: hands vs shoulders

  1. #1

    Default hands vs shoulders

    I know that this has been talked about many times, but I have been mandated to teach hands only now ( despite success for many years being mostly a shoulder blocking team). What is the aiming point on down blocks when using hands?
    I believe that using shoulders on angle blocks is more effective and safer, as it keeps the head out of the block. Any thoughts?

  2. #2

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    Coach,

    For years we have delivered the initial contact, in certain blocks, using the hands and the shoulders always follow. LOL I really don't see a problem using the shoulder in certain blocks or schemes. What's the thought/s behind hands only?

  3. #3

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    Shoulder blocking is all about staying fit to a block in order to create double teams, angle blocks & does not involve the head. Hands blocking creates separation, creates more holding penalties & involves the head.

  4. #4

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    I agree JIm. Unfortunately the HC and the OC think thathands are better and are mandating it. I think they don't understand the shoulder block and they don't want to "old style" stuff.

  5. #5

    Default Shoulders

    Greyhound: you could present a written statement to the HC and OC documenting that you are against hands blocking and if any head injuries occur as a result of this mandate, you are absolved of ALL responsibility. The negligence falls on their heads. See how they react to that!!!
    I know that when I explained to our parents that we 'd use shoulder blocks as much as possible (and "Hawk" tackling) to keep the players' head out of initial contact, they loved the idea. One dad asked where this concept (shoulder block) came from. I told him that it's always been the way the Delaware Wing T blocking technique was taught. His response, "I knew we were going to like this offense!!!"

  6. #6

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    I had this discussion over 25 years ago, when I was offered my 1st offensive coordinator's job. I let the line coach use hands because he had been doing it. The result was too many holding calls. The next year I became the a line coach to institute shoulder blocking & wanted to teach the line coach so he could do it on his own eventually. The result was less holding penalties, PERIOD.

    This past season, I offered to help a local team where I played for in high school & taught shoulder blocking but the majority of the coaches there did not understand why & were never on the same page since very few understood wing-t. I am not going to be helping them this year & I would bet they will teach hands. Curious to see the results.

  7. #7
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by greyhound View Post
    I know that this has been talked about many times, but I have been mandated to teach hands only now ( despite success for many years being mostly a shoulder blocking team). What is the aiming point on down blocks when using hands?
    I believe that using shoulders on angle blocks is more effective and safer, as it keeps the head out of the block. Any thoughts?
    Coach
    If you are mandated then here is how you do it:
    1.Aiming point is the inside arm pit of the defender. The one closest to the ball.
    2. Biggest key is no longer going to fire step to opposite foot. You are going to slide step to the opposite foot.
    3. Step breakdown is: slide..step into crouch...punch.....run the feet.
    4. Punch should be so hard it will stop the defenders heart.

    This is how pro and college teams down block The key is make sure you get depth away from the LOS.

    Side Note:
    Just had one of my former players who is a two year starter on the oline in a D1 college come back the other day and tell me he misses our offense. I asked why. College offense must be killing it. He said "Oh! Yeah! Killing it is right. It's killing ME!
    I get my ass kicked even on our run plays because I have to block people with my hand and waddle my ass up into a hole. Where here in your offense I go get that guy and to blow his ass up. I really miss that"
    Good Luck
    Coach Wright

  8. #8

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    I believe that shoulder blocking and finishing with the hands if necessary is the safest way to block. We must do everything in our power as coaches to make this game as safe as possible before it all goes away...maybe not in my lifetime but it will go away if we don't act now!!! I am ashamed to say that I was a proponent of "face tackling" in the 70's because everyone was teaching it. On our 3 step game I told my linemen to "Butt'em and Cut'em". Leading with the head is NOT RIGHT. If one of your players does this and is not penalized, you as a coach should take him out of the game to save him and the opponent from injury. STAND UP AND BE ACCOUNTABLE!

    In 1978 they put the HS rule in that neither team could block below the waist in the kicking game. In the 3rd game our opponent was running a middle wedge return. I had a great future D1 LB that went down on the kickoff, cut down the 3 men in the wedge, reached up and tackled the BC. It was one of the greatest plays I ever saw but was illegal. He was rightfully penalized 15 yards, he protested and got us another 15 and should have been tossed from the game. I had to physically get him off the field. I sat him on the bench until he calmed down amidst the protests of my players, coaches and fans. That rule was instituted to protect players from knee injuries (that's why I need 2 new ones) and head injuries. I urge all of you to do what's right and keep the head out of football! My good friend Chuck Klausing once told me we should take the face mask off the helmets and then no one would lead with their head.

    Rich Erdelyi

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