In the o-line everything we do starts with our offensive line stance.
Coach Derby always says, “Playing offensive line is not a natural thing.”
Running, throwing, catching and kicking are all natural actions for our bodies.
Great offensive linemen start with a great offensive line stance.
Getting in a good three point stance is not a natural action.
Firing off the ball, staying low, and blocking are not natural actions.
All of these actions must start with a great stance that we are comfortable getting in and out of.
So how do we make an unnatural action feel natural?
Repetition. repetition, repetition.
Just like anything else we learn to do athletically, we learn it through repetition and muscle memory.
5 Key Elements of a Great Offensive Line Stance
Every good football stance, regardless of position, requires a solid base.
For offensive lineman finding a comfortable, powerful and effective base can be challenging.
Many young players, especially bigger kids, often have a really wide base in their stance.
They do this because it’s easier and more comfortable.
The problem when players get much wider than their shoulders is that they lose mobility.
We want our offensive linemen to be able to move in all directions out of the same stance.
Another common issue for young offensive linemen is getting them off their toes in their stance.
This is also difficult because it’s easier and more comfortable to be on your toes than to keep your whole foot in the ground.
One of things we talk to our players about is keeping the whole foot in the ground in our stance and when we block.
Doing this helps us to take full advantage of our power base activating muscles up through our quads, hips and glutes.
Having our whole foot in the ground in our stance also helps us to maintain our balance and allows us quick take-off in any direction.
How many times, as a defensive player, have you seen offensive linemen with white knuckles.
Dead giveaway telling which direction that player is headed, right?
We want to be just as explosive, in any direction, without tipping off where we are going.
We can do this if we rely on our power base and feet to provide balance and keep minimal weight on our down hand.
Don’t give away what you’re doing with your offensive line stance.
Flat Back & Head Up
If you are looking at ground as a blocker then that’s where you end up.
And you can’t block anyone lying on the ground.
You also need to see where you are going from your offensive line stance.
Keep your head up and keep your back flat.
Young players have one of two problems.
They either squat like frogs or have no knee bend with their butt up in the air.
Offensive linemen need to find that happy medium, get that flat back and be coiled to strike.
Power producing position
One of my college coaches favorite lines, “You need a “Z” in the knee!”
Linemen need to be knee-benders not waist-benders.
The easiest way that I’ve been able to explain this to kids is to tell them to get their thighs parallel to the ground.
Offensive linemen need to be able to generate force off the line in any direction.
To do that you need to have good knee bend.
The thing you have to be careful of is not to get frog squatters.
You know… that guy who’s butt is a foot below his knees.
Balance is the key to an all-way go from your stance and you need that knee bend to have balance.
Stance has to be one of the pillars of building a great offensive lineman.
Too many coaches overlook the importance of spending time on a players stance.
Without the proper offensive line stance players will not reach their potential.
Spend time on your stance.
Get comfortable in it and make it second nature.
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