Author Topic: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?  (Read 2404 times)

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Offline COACHDAVIS79

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PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« on: September 27, 2010, 02:01:59 AM »
Just wondering what are some Pro's and Con's of running the zone blocking scheme on the youth level?  Wondering do you think this is one of the best schemes to run?  What kind of lineman would you need to run this scheme with?

Offline davecisar

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Re: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2010, 09:26:12 AM »
MMPs have to play somewhere-
Most youth coaches cant/wont play them on defense
They are usually on the O-line
LBs- the other teams- fastest, most aggressive, most physical players, best athletes
MMPs- by definition, poor body control, lack athleticism- maybe lack aggressiveness
In zone blocking that weak, non athletic, slow player with very little speed or body control is going to have to block the other teams - fastest, best body control  and most aggressive player in space-on the run- VERY difficult to do in real life even with great coaching with a true mmp- based on real life dynmamics of non-select youth football

If you are a select team- or run off players- dont play the weaker kids at all- not an issue
For guys like me that are going to play everyone 16 plays-  we dont cut, run kids off, selectively recruit etc, it is a problem
« Last Edit: September 27, 2010, 09:28:51 AM by davecisar »
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Offline mahonz

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Re: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2010, 11:57:28 AM »
Two kinds of zone blocking….Inside and Outside.

I have tried both. Inside runs the defense vertical and does require strong kids. Outside runs the defense horizontal and does require kids that can move well.

We have had good success with OZ but not so much with IZ.

Both systems require a RB that can anticipate the zone. So the question becomes…at what age can a RB begin to anticipate plays.

Honestly that is the difficult part. Teaching backs to properly run the zone. There are no hole numbers going on, only monuments so those monuments have to be designed per the athleticism of your line. The big misnomer about zone blocking that Dave pointed out is that it requires superior talent on the line. Not really. It requires a RB that can anticipate the zone. The reality is none of us ever have enough talent to go around but zone really boils down the the RB...not the line.

Every time you run a zone play the back has three choices after he presses his monument. These choices are determined pre snap and then as he takes the handoff. This is one of the reasons the back must be set deeper than you may be comfortable with. Teaching a back to anticipate the zone takes game day reps. Drilling this only takes it so far. The best zone back I ever coached had the concept down in about 4 games. After two years....WOW.

Now he plays HS varsity ball as a LB'r.  >:(

The biggest positive about zone blocking at the youth level is time management. The rules never change no matter what front you face so you do not have to spend an inordinate amount of time going over different fronts…it is what it is.  The blocking then conforms to whatever the defense is doing post snap so in theory the defense should always be wrong. So you have the added time to drill the scheme which means you should get pretty good at it.

The biggest negative at the youth level is that you need 5 positions whereas the kids never change all season. The reason being is they have to “get to know” how their buddy next to them plays since most block are combo blocks that may or may not begin to rotate. Our most successful zone seasons were the ones where we played the same 5 90% of the entire season with one rotator as a backup.

Zone requires backside cut blocking at times. You have to decide if teaching kids to cut block fits your philosophy. It’s a perfectly legal block… but …at what age can a defender responsibly get off a well-executed cut block. That would depend on the age group and makeup of your particular league.

Like any system…zone is good when its executed properly and bad when its not. It can be run with any group of kids but does require good solid coaching. It’s a different animal that requires the kids to think and why I really like it. Im not a teach kids how to be robots type of coach. I think that only works to a point. Thereafter I want smart players and a well-executed zone scheme requires at least 6 players to think.

My thoughts…

Coach Mike
What is beautiful, lives forever.

CoachKell

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Re: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2010, 02:20:50 PM »
Two kinds of zone blocking….Inside and Outside.

I have tried both. Inside runs the defense vertical and does require strong kids. Outside runs the defense horizontal and does require kids that can move well.

We have had good success with OZ but not so much with IZ.

Both systems require a RB that can anticipate the zone. So the question becomes…at what age can a RB begin to anticipate plays.

Honestly that is the difficult part. Teaching backs to properly run the zone. There are no hole numbers going on, only monuments so those monuments have to be designed per the athleticism of your line. The big misnomer about zone blocking that Dave pointed out is that it requires superior talent on the line. Not really. It requires a RB that can anticipate the zone. The reality is none of us ever have enough talent to go around but zone really boils down the the RB...not the line.

Every time you run a zone play the back has three choices after he presses his monument. These choices are determined pre snap and then as he takes the handoff. This is one of the reasons the back must be set deeper than you may be comfortable with. Teaching a back to anticipate the zone takes game day reps. Drilling this only takes it so far. The best zone back I ever coached had the concept down in about 4 games. After two years....WOW.

Now he plays HS varsity ball as a LB'r.  >:(

The biggest positive about zone blocking at the youth level is time management. The rules never change no matter what front you face so you do not have to spend an inordinate amount of time going over different fronts…it is what it is.  The blocking then conforms to whatever the defense is doing post snap so in theory the defense should always be wrong. So you have the added time to drill the scheme which means you should get pretty good at it.

The biggest negative at the youth level is that you need 5 positions whereas the kids never change all season. The reason being is they have to “get to know” how their buddy next to them plays since most block are combo blocks that may or may not begin to rotate. Our most successful zone seasons were the ones where we played the same 5 90% of the entire season with one rotator as a backup.

Zone requires backside cut blocking at times. You have to decide if teaching kids to cut block fits your philosophy. It’s a perfectly legal block… but …at what age can a defender responsibly get off a well-executed cut block. That would depend on the age group and makeup of your particular league.

Like any system…zone is good when its executed properly and bad when its not. It can be run with any group of kids but does require good solid coaching. It’s a different animal that requires the kids to think and why I really like it. Im not a teach kids how to be robots type of coach. I think that only works to a point. Thereafter I want smart players and a well-executed zone scheme requires at least 6 players to think.

My thoughts…

Coach Mike

One of the things we had to get used to is the slower approach by the back to the hole to allow the block to develop.  But it did help out greatly.  also Mike for some odd reason we're having better success with IZ, but I 'm not radlly sure why yet

Offline mahonz

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Re: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2010, 02:26:21 PM »
One of the things we had to get used to is the slower approach by the back to the hole to allow the block to develop.  But it did help out greatly.  also Mike for some odd reason we're having better success with IZ, but I 'm not radlly sure why yet

Rich

Probably because you have Coach Mountjoy helping you.

He explained why it wasnt working for us before he went on vacation. We are not running IZ this season so I have not put it to the test...but will someday.

I am having serious line issues this season. I am at a loss really.

Coach Mike
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CoachKell

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Re: PRO'S AND CON'S OF RUNNING ZONE BLOCKING?
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2010, 03:00:14 PM »
We're having them too, it's basically growing pains though, they're so used to the block down kick out stuff it was tough at 1st.  I had to dummy it down for the kids to pick up the concept but they began to get it down by week 2. 

But I agree to get fluent at it they need to be in that position throughout the season.