Evaluating How Much Was Taught

By FirstDown PlayBook on Nov 9, 2022
Wasting Time

It’s the time of year when some of you are finished and asking yourself hard questions. It’s normally a very different process than what takes place at the beginning of a season. At the beginning of a season it is often about ideas and plays/defenses. When coaches start evaluating at the end of a season, it is about evaluating how much was taught and how well. There are often cases of plays being run one time, which is a recipe for disaster. Coaches see that a lot of practice time went into things that never saw the field or that rarely did.

At the end of these meetings, coaches often understand that they tried to do too much, too many different things. The analytics often show that your most productive plays should have been called more. When coaches begin evaluating how much was taught, they also often find that the lack of success can be pinpointed on failure to install and teach with detail.

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This is why we always caution coaches who are new to FirstDown PlayBook about how to use this coaching tool. Even though we have thousands of plays and defenses, that doesn’t mean you should try to run them all. The better course is to find what fits your personnel and teach it with the detail that we offer in our coaching points and player assignments. Today we provide you with an example of one of our run plays. As you begin evaluating how much was taught and how well, consider if your detail is similar to this and if FirstDown PlayBook can help you with next season.

FORMATION: 3×1 Pistol

PLAY: Inside Zone Read Strong


-Run out of 11 personnel with 3 Receivers and 1 Tight End.

-Strong side Inside zone scheme.

-Offensive Line and TE will zone block the first 6 box defenders play side.

-QB reads the 7th box defender who will be unblocked. (Read Key)

-The QB looks to hand the ball off unless the Read Key crashes inside.

-If the Read Key crashes inside the QB will pull the ball and attack the perimeter.

-If the defense has a 6 man box TE releases or zone blocks with the Tackle for Safety.


-Also run this as a normal inside zone play with no read. 6 to block 6.

When football coaches start evaluating a season it is often about evaluating how much was taught and how well.


Align at 5 yards off the ball with a balanced stance.

On the snap drop the read side leg to open a path for the Back.

Get eyes on the Read Key as the Back is responsible for the mesh.

Hand off or keep based on the Read Key’s reaction.

If the ball is handed off execute the naked fake at full speed around the edge.

Ball Carrier:

Align at 6-7 yards depending on RB’s speed.

On the snap open step to the QB with the near leg.

The second step sync and mesh with the QB.

On the third step attack downhill at the butt of the play side Guard.

Read the first down lineman play side.

Attack downhill or cutback.

If the QB keeps the ball carry out a full speed fake and stay frontside.

Offensive Line & Tight End:

Apply zone blocking rules frontside (RB handoff side) to backside.

Use zone scheme to block the frontside 6 defenders.

Emphasis is on moving the down linemen as the RB will attack down hill to cutback.

Slot Receiver:

Block the first defender outside of the box count.

If the TE is blocking your man go to the next level Safety.

Outside WR’s:

Play Side: Most Dangerous Man

Read Side: Most Dangerous Man

Charlie Coiner is the Founder of FirstDown PlayBook