I created my Back to Basics series because I believe as coaches it is our job to lay a foundation that allows athletes to improve on, not just have the players run two laps and then run plays over and over again without actually teaching them how to improve their skill set. Effective coaching improves a player’s overall ability by teaching fundamentals and applying drills that builds their confidence.
The quarterback is the most scrutinized position in football because he is the leader of the team. It is his responsibility to guide the team to victory. If the quarterback’s precision is off, the team suffers and has a greater chance of dropping the game. As a former quarterback, I know firsthand the amount of pressure associated with this role. It is crucial to teach drills that improve the quarterback’s skill level and response time while building confidence. When under pressure, a quarterback has a split second to respond. What would you do if a defensive end twice your size broke through the line and wanted nothing more than take you down? Most would turn and run the other way. A confident quarterback has the play memorized, scans the field for an open receiver or finds a hole and runs for a first down. Why? Because they are a leader; determined not to go down without a fight.
A true leader will step aside and acknowledge the fact that by working as one unit, one team, they are able to attain victory. Each quarterback is unique and has his own style of leadership. You can have quarterbacks practice the same drills, but if the environment you create during practice doesn’t build their confidence as an athlete he is more likely fold under pressure. Remember that each player has his own distinct quality he brings to the team, so allow him to grow in his strengths.
I created these warm-ups from my personal experience as a quarterback as well as a coach. Here is a glimpse at how the warm-ups impacted the quarterback I coached this past year at Boylan High School in Rockford, Ill., versus the year prior (before I joined the staff).
2015 - 80/170 (47.1%), 900 yards, 3 touchdowns, 10 Interceptions, 200 rushing yards
2016 - 70/110 (63.6%), 1,056 yards, 13 touchdowns, 2 interceptions, 250 rushing yards
The following PowerPoint slides are what I share to help coaches improve their quarterback stats and FBI. Sometimes a minor adjustment changes the outcome of a player’s ability. The one thing I say to all my quarterbacks is, “Don’t make a bad play into a worse play.”
Click here to check out my drills and tips.
Please let me know how your quarterback has improved, post comments, or ask questions by using #HudlQBWarmUps.
Anthony Stone is a Physical Education teacher at Gregory Elementary School and Quarterbacks Coach at Boylan High School in Rockford, Ill. He is also the Defensive Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach for the Women’s Australian National Outback 2017 Team & writes blogs for Firstdown Playbook.
In July 2016, he was named to the Hudl 100 list. He has presented at IAPHERD, the top physical education convention in Illinois, on how to get students moving with his Games Galore presentations. He has also presented at the Chicago Glazier Clinics on quarterbacks & special teams. He was the Defensive Coordinator for the 2010 U.S. Women’s National Tackle Football Team, winners of the IFAF Women’s World Championship in which Team USA did not allow a point in three games with an overall score of 201-0. Stone has coached in the CIFL and the IWFL Leagues as well as Beloit College (Linebackers/Special Teams Coordinator) and Rockford University (Quarterbacks/Wide Receivers).
Stone has also coached football at the youth, middle school and high school level. He will be putting on fundamental youth football camps around the world in 2017. Please contact him to bring his “Back to the Basics Youth Football Camp” to a city near you.
Follow him on Twitter @Coach_Stone_MT.