Pass Protection Separates Offensive Line Coaches

By FirstDown PlayBook on May 19, 2023
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We saw an article the other day that was promoting the notion that if you coach the offensive line, you can coach any position. With the one exception of coaching special teams, we would entirely agree. However, in our opinion, not all offensive line jobs are created equal. It is and always will be pass protection that separates great offensive line coaches from the rest.

For this reason coaching the offensive line is quite possibly the most important positions on any football coaching staff. Yes, the offensive coordinator and defensive coordinator will normally be the first two hires for a new head coach. Once again, we say this with apologies to the special teams coach for obvious reasons, but that is another blog for another time.

Almost immediately after becoming the offensive coordinator, a good football coach is going to either have his offensive line coach already picked out or they will be in a desperate search for this individual. Good offensive coordinators understand that it is not just the fact that this coach will dictate  much of the toughness needed to play up front. It is much more than that.

In Order To Be Great At Teaching Pass Protection You Must Understand Defense

The offensive coordinator understands that this coach is going to be a big part of keeping the quarterback protected. Protected quarterbacks stay healthy. The coordinator also understands that it doesn’t stop there. The offensive line coach must understand how to protect the quarterback and do it in a way that allows the coordinator to get the number of receivers out to the side he needs them.

Almost any offensive line coach can coach pass protection to keep the quarterback upright. The really good ones can do it and understand how important 3×2 pass game distribution is when throwing the ball. Trust us when we say that good defensive coordinators understand this too. This is how they come up with their pressure packages.

More FDPB: Test Your Players Before The Game With This…

In order to become a good offensive line coach in a system that throws the ball, an offensive line coach needs to understand defensive secondary coverages. The video below is from a few years back. We dive into this a little deeper with our coaching video today as we talk about your Dual Pass Protection section in FirstDown PlayBook. Keep in mind that your screens will need to tie into this as well.

We understand that some offenses at the high school level may just slide right and slide left, or gap protect. There is nothing wrong with that if you can get by with it. However, this video shows two things. It shows how important your pass protection is against a pressure minded defensive coordinator. It also shows how FirstDown PlayBook has already done a great deal of the drawing for you In our Pass Protection section.

Harlod Goodwin