I received this e-mail from coach Rodney Polston last week. Coach figured out a very creative way to get one of his weaker kids involved in the game.
Just thought I’d touch base with you. We had our first game Saturday morning. We won 26-14. We allowed two single big plays on defense for scores and scored with four different boys on offense.
Offensively, we went mostly with Wedge and Power. They played 4 boys on the line, albeit very big boys. We wedged them four straight times to the tune of two scores before they adjusted. Still, we had a dropped handoff on the reverse and a fumbled snap at the 5 later in the game or the score would have been worse. We did have the Mouse series in there as well.Our league allows a coach on the field. I called our no-huddle plays off a clipboard to the boys while they were at the line.
I’d like to share a story with you about our smallest boy, Jon. Jon’s clearly our smallest boy and works as an A-gapper nearly all of the time. Two weeks ago, during a kick return practice, I “kicked” the ball at Jon to see his reaction. He ran around with his arms in the air like it was a fire drill. We all got a good laugh out of it.
It sparked an idea for me. I decided to try and use Jon’s “energy” on offense for a “Jon Special” play. We call it “Mouse 32 Wedge Jon Special Pass” and during our game we just called it during a timeout. Obviously you know the Mouse 32 Wedge part ( short direct snap to an up back running a middle wedge). Jon Special means Jon is in at 1 back and gets to do whatever he wants. Pass means our line will be yelling PASS while our 2 back dropped back giving his best pro quarterback impersonation. Our 4 back went running into the backfield looking for a phantom ball. Jon usually throws his hands up and runs backwards…although the first time we ran it in the game he decided to spin in circles. Watching the defense react is priceless.
I had to sell Jon on it but now it’s his favorite play. I’ve also got the boys hooked on it as well. I’ve had two, maybe three suggestions from the boys on how we could mix up the “Jon Special” and make it different. I did speak with Jon’s mom about the play and explained how and why I came up with the idea…and she told me Jon loves that he has his own “play”.
Take care, Coach.
So now Coach Rodney has his kids involved in play design, getting them to think of the larger picture. A picture not only bigger than their own assignment, but involving other weaker kids into the mix. Great idea coach, I love hearing about stories like this. A good football play that is part of the base series, but also one with a slight twist that will give Jon a memory that will stick with him for the next 40+ years. That’s coaching youth football.