How to be a good wide receiver

How to be a good wide receiver

Wide receivers are the playmakers on the field. They make the acrobatic catches, run for 40+ yards after a catch and dance effortlessly in the end zone. They must have a good combination of physical traits and hand-eye coordination. A great receiver is such a complicated combination of traits—agility, body control, strength, quickness, soft hands, physical stamina, concentration, focus, toughness, pride, eye–hand coordination, vision and intelligence. (Norvell)

Sounds simple but a wide receiver must know how to catch the ball. If a receiver cannot catch the ball consistently, he will not be a threat on the field. When the running game is heavily defended, the quarterback will look to throw to his receiver. For practice, young athletes should try catching the ball with no gloves. This will make catching the ball easier once gloves are added in the equation. A receivers hands should not cover their face nor should the ball hit his chest before he makes the catch.

Catching the ball is only half of the battle. Great receivers can catch on the run or make a play on a ball not thrown in his direction. Wideouts must have quick feet and run good routes. Whether a receiver is cutting through the middle or tiptoeing against the sidelines, a lot of the work is done from the hips down. Good receivers must be able to shake a defender away from him during tight coverage. A receiver’s agility and speed determine whether they can keep space between him and his defender.

Wide receivers with excellent footwork will help them catch the ball better. It is ideal for the receiver to reach the end of his route at the same time the ball is hitting his hands. A combination of quarterback accuracy and the speed and good hands of the receiver will almost always guarantee a catch. The quarterback and receiver must be on the same page. Receivers are quick minded and have the ability to adjust with the moving parts of the game.

Speed is equally as important as having good vision. In order to beat the one on one competition, wide receivers must be able to see what is happening on the field as the play happens. If the receiver does not know what once the ball is snapped, he will have a hard time locating the ball once it is thrown. Every route in the playbook has a certain depth and spacing on the field. The receiver’s job is to run the route at the proper depth and get open at the proper time. Without good vision, he will not know where to go.

Space is important for a receiver because it makes it easier to catch the ball. He must use his speed and ability to change direction in order to create space. When there is not enough space between a defender and the wideout, the wideout will be more likely to use his arms to push off and create space which will result in an offensive pass interference.

There will be times where a receiver is called to block on a play and make room for the running back or a quarterback keeper. Upper body strength for a wide receiver is just as important as below the abdomen. A wide receiver who is 5’10”, 165 pounds may have a harder time blocking a cornerback or defensive back than a player who is 6’3”, 195 pounds. Good blocking is an overlooked trait for many receivers. Strength helps players get off the line when the defensive back tries to jam them. Strength helps when two players are fighting for position as they run down the field and work for position on the ball. Strength also helps when going up for high balls and jump balls.

All of these traits will help receivers withstand one on one competition. With great speed, agility, ability to quickly change direction and vision, receivers could shake any corner back on defensive back on their tail. The best NFL wide receivers know how to change direction without affecting the outcome of the catch or where the quarterback throws the ball. With all of these traits combined, the most important thing for a wide receiver to do is get open.

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How to be a good wide receiver

All-Pro receiver A.J. Green shares secrets about how to become a dominant wide receiver.

Standing 6-foot-4 and weighing 210 pounds, A.J. Green has the type of size that any coach would dream of when imagining the perfect wide receiver. But the 6-time Pro Bowler doesn’t rely on his size alone. He’s learned a host of tricks from his years in the league that he says have made him a more complete player—and far tougher for defenders to cover. If you’re a receiver looking to improve, follow these tips from Green.

Green’s ability to win jump balls is second to none. What’s his secret? For one, he grew up playing basketball. “Going up for a jump ball is like going up for a rebound. Basketball was the first organized sport I played. Football came after. I think playing basketball all four years of high school really helped me [win jump balls],” Green says.

Green offers a simple but effective piece of advice that can help you win more jump balls: attack the ball. “I think the biggest thing is ‘see ball, go get ball.’ It doesn’t matter what’s going on around you, see the ball and go get it,” Green says. If you have access to a Vertimax, it’s a great training tool for increasing your vertical jump. The higher you can jump, the more jump balls you’ll win.

Standing 6-foot-4 and weighing 210 pounds, A.J. Green has the type of size that any coach would dream of when imagining the perfect wide receiver. But the 6-time Pro Bowler doesn’t rely on his size alone. He’s learned a host of tricks from his years in the league that he says have made him a more complete player—and far tougher for defenders to cover. If you’re a receiver looking to improve, follow these tips from Green.

1. Attack Jump Balls

Green’s ability to win jump balls is second to none. What’s his secret? For one, he grew up playing basketball. “Going up for a jump ball is like going up for a rebound. Basketball was the first organized sport I played. Football came after. I think playing basketball all four years of high school really helped me [win jump balls],” Green says.

Green offers a simple but effective piece of advice that can help you win more jump balls: attack the ball. “I think the biggest thing is ‘see ball, go get ball.’ It doesn’t matter what’s going on around you, see the ball and go get it,” Green says. If you have access to a Vertimax, it’s a great training tool for increasing your vertical jump. The higher you can jump, the more jump balls you’ll win.

2. Strong Hands = More Catches

Defensive backs love to pry on Green’s long arms as he tries to secure a catch, but they rarely succeed in causing an incompletion. Green’s incredible grip and hand strength is the result of hundreds of hours of practice.

TRY THIS: “I do a lot of hand and grip strength drills and exercises,” Green says. “One of the best ones is when I get someone to throw me the ball while someone else has a towel wrapped around my forearm. When I’m trying to catch the ball, they tug on the towel. I really think that’s helped.”

How to be a good wide receiver

3. Find an Edge on Film

Film is a huge weapon in a wide receiver’s arsenal. Understanding the concepts and players you’re likely to face can help you react quicker on game day and punish a defense.

“I prepare as hard off the field as I do on the field, [especially] in the film room,” Green says. “Reading different defenses, different concepts, how they’re going to play me or how I think they’re going to play me—it all really helps.” What should you look for while watching film? Tendencies. If you see a cornerback get burned, try to figure out why he got beat. Was he overly aggressive in press coverage? Make a mental note of that so you know what to expect on game day.

4. Get Comfortable With Your Quarterback

If you watch a Bengals game, you’ll frequently see A.J. Green talking to quarterback Andy Dalton. Those conversations are a key reason the two have such great chemistry. But the main reason Green and Dalton click so well on game day is because they’re genuine friends.

“He and I have been together for six years now,” Green says. “We have that relationship on and off the field that allows us to communicate during the game. I can say, ‘Andy, here’s what I see.’ Or he can say, ‘AJ, this is what you need to do better. I feel like you can get him on this route.’ So we have that communication on the field, but we also have a special relationship off the field that really helps.”

5. Slow Down to Get Open

Elite receivers don’t come off the line and run every route at full speed from start to finish. It might sound counterintuitive, but changing speeds throughout a route can help you deceive defenders and get open.

Green says, “That’s something I’ve gotten better at over the years. I picked it up in year four, going to the Pro Bowl and talking with guys like Larry Fitzgerald, Reggie Wayne, Steve Smith, Andre Johnson about route-running. You don’t have to run every route like you’re running 100-mph off the ball. Sometimes you have to set them up for the next move. I think that’s something I learned talking to the older guys.”

How to be a good wide receiver

6. Sell The Double-Move

Slower can be better when it comes to making defenders guess, too. Green used to struggle with his double-moves because he was in too much of a rush to sell the first move. Over time, he learned that really selling the first move before executing the second one is the key to getting open.

“I like to do everything fast, even from when I was younger,” Green says. “So coaches have always told me, ‘Sell the first move. Act like you’re just running that first route. Take your time.’ It’s something I’m getting better at, being patient. In the double-move, the first move is always the most important. That’s how you beat people.”

7. Know How to Win Your Slants

Slant routes are a bread-and-butter play for many offenses. If a receiver can run it sharply and a quarterback can deliver the ball on time, the slant route can be very difficult to guard. A clean, quick release by the wide receiver can make or break the play.

“Sometimes I’m physical, sometimes I beat them with speed,” Green says. “It depends on what the defender’s doing. If he’s pressing you, you have to use a power move and get physical with him. If it’s a smaller guy, you can beat him [like that].”

How to be a good wide receiver

“Every great route starts with a great stance.”

It’s the truth. A wide receiver can set himself up for success every single play if he learns to honor his stance before the ball is snapped. This is time that great receivers spend diagnosing the defense, creating a plan to attack it, recreating a counter plan, visualizing the job and preparing himself to explode off the line with intent.

Every wide receiver at every level should practice stance and start every single day and take pride in doing so. Create a gamelike picture in your head, visualize a job that you will be assigned on game day and explode out on the snap. Practice that process over and over again and never get bored of it.

For any of the visualization and mental processing to work, the mechanics of a proper stance and start must become second nature. False steps, lazy pad level and wasted movement at the line are costly in the crucial moments of a football game if receivers do not take pride in perfecting them during practice.

Here are four commandments of a wide receiver’s stance:

Inside foot forward

Inside foot forward feels most natural for many players, especially outside receivers. Many systems that teach outside routes off of steps require the receiver to align with his inside foot forward consistently in order to guarantee everyone is counting steps the same way.

There can be systems that enforce inside foot or outside foot forward and can work the same way, but consistency is key to create a uniform method of teaching each route and avoid creating tendencies that defense can pick up on. NFL receivers and very advanced college receivers can often earn the right to switch up their stance as they like, but they must be avoid becoming predictable.

When starting a stance with their inside foot forward, many receivers like to pigeon toe the front foot, but 99 percent of them will turn it back straight before taking off.

That’s wasted movement that receivers don’t need.

If this shows up on film, the receiver should straighten his foot out and roll off of it. There are some players that prove they can roll off the outside part of their front foot without pivoting it straight, in which case a pigeon toe is acceptable, but that is rare. Most receivers align with a pigeon toe because they think it looks cool.

80-20 rule

Eighty percent of weight on the front foot. Twenty percent on the back foot.

  • The front knee is bent in front of the toe, slightly past perpendicular.
  • Chest is at a 45-degree angle with a slight bend in the back leg.
  • Weight goes from toes to insteps in order to roll out of the stance.

This must become a comfortable position for players to sit in for long periods of time because of “freeze” and audible situations. Make it feel natural.

When rolling off of the stance, the most important concepts to grasp are “no false steps” and “play low to lower.” Receivers already start in a low, athletic stance. So, from there and throughout the duration of the route or blocking assignment, receivers should maintain an even lower pad level – at least that’s the standard a coach wants to set. This allows every receiver to maintain power and leverage in press releases, breakpoints and stalk blocking.

With the 80-20 rule, there should be so much weight on the front foot that if the receiver is to move immediately forward, he has no choice but to roll off of it. This makes it easier to gain ground right away and avoid false steps.

“Roll off your front foot, low to lower,” is a phrase coaches use often that paints a clear picture in the players’ heads of what a good stance & start feels like. Against the best cornerbacks, a false step can give the defender all the advantage he needs to win the rep.

Eyes are the key

A good receiver will align quickly & scan the defense before setting his eyes inside at the ball.

This is a process that should occur on every snap and must be practiced and perfected. Scan the coverage triangle, gain information, see the football before it’s snapped – every single time. There is no excuse for a false start – ever.

It is absolutely critical for every receiver to hurry to the alignment after seeing the play signal or after breaking the huddle so that he can maximize his time creating a plan of attack and use his eyes to diagnose what’s in front of him.

Hands comfortable but ready

Coaches share many different philosophies for a receiver’s hand placement in his stance. The best advice is for a receiver to do what he’s comfortable with as long as he’s ready to engage in hand combat suddenly.

Receivers often feel most comfortable lining up with their hands relaxed at the sides, but there is also merit to bringing the hands up in front of their chest in tight press situations where immediate hand combat is expected.

Consistency, comfort and explosiveness are key in all aspects of stance and start. The best receivers develop a routine that they use on every play and eliminate wasted movement off the ball.

Photo Courtesy: Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports

Drew Lieberman is currently the wide receivers coach at Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, New Jersey. He previously served as the wide receivers coach at his alma mater, Wesleyan University from 2016-2017 and was the assistant WR coach at Rutgers from 2014-2015 & UAlbany in 2014 where he helped produce 5 NFL receivers. In August of 2017, Drew founded The Sideline Hustle (thesidelinehustle.com) – a football education resource for players & coaches. Follow him on Twitter: @sidelinehustle & Instagram:@sidelinehustle.

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How to be a good wide receiver

More important than a wide receiver’s pre-practice routine Is his everyday rituals. Routine is a sequence of actions that is regularly followed. Ritual is a series of actions that is regularly and invariably followed. In other words, routine is what the players are used to doing before practice. The rituals are priorities that must accomplished every single day, without fail.

At many high school and college programs, student-athletes arrive to practice directly after class, making it difficult for some players to dress, see the trainers and make it to the field in time for a full pre-practice warm up (this is generally not an issue at the higher Division 1 level college programs). To combat inconsistent pre-practice arrival times it’s useful for receivers to have a checklist of rituals each day that can be completed after practice, but must be finished before leaving. This also allows pre-practice time for any new installation or assignment review that is often necessary during a typical game week practice.

Wide receiver practice rituals:

  • Stance & Start – a great stance and take off can only become second nature by accumulating reps and practicing stance & start every single day with intention. Receivers should focus on firing off the ball low to lower and practice different plans to beat press coverage.
    • At least 10 take offs each leg before leaving the practice field.

  • Duck Walk – this is a great exercise to align the receiver’s insteps (inside part of foot), knees and hips so that when a player pushes off his insteps on routes and releases, a more violent hip-shift is created & hip flexibility increases.
    • Duck walk from the sideline to the top of the numbers, down and back twice.

  • Backward Reach Run – a great warm up exercise to directly target the hamstrings and build hamstring strength over time.
    • *On a personal note – I once had five different receivers battle ongoing hamstring pulls throughout one season and in my offseason research, athletic trainers informed me that backward reach run would be a good ritual to adopt as part of an everyday warm-up. In the past two seasons since adopting backward reach run, there has not been a single pulled hamstring in the group.
    • Backward reach run from the sideline to the far hash, down and back twice.
  • 100 Catches – each receiver is required to catch 100 extra passes before or after practice in addition to any passes caught during practice. The extra catches should consist of a combination of focused, intentional ball drills, not a casual game of catch with a friend before practice.
  • Group stretching – players will stretch and cool down as a position group every day immediately after practice to start the recovery process as soon as possible.

Knowing that each player will complete these rituals every day allows the coach to maximize the pre-practice routine to best prepare the players for the task at hand that day.

Wide receiver pre-practice routine (in order of preferred completion):

  • Walk through plays, concepts & route detail – setting aside pre-practice time for play review allows the players to start practice with confidence and jump right into individual periods drills and group periods without spending practice time to review.
  • Backward Reach Run, Stance & Start, Duck Walk – these are three rituals that can serve as a functional part of the players’ warm up and are preferred to be completed before practice starts if time allows.
  • “Run at Me” ball drill – a great ball drill to continue to warm up the players while acclimating their hands and eyes to catching a full-speed football with limited reps before practice.

Regardless of the routine a coach chooses for his players before practice, the goal should be to prepare the players to play with confidence and allow the group to maximize allotted practice time. Doing so requires a combination of both mental and physical work that has the potential to be different each day.

Photo Courtesy: Matthew J. Lee/Boston Globe

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A record-setting college coach and champion high school coach share six essential drills for WRs.

By Steve Heck and Matt Pirolli, FNF Coaches Contributors

Steve Heck is in his ninth year as the wide receiver coach at Kutztown University. In 2015, The Kutztown offense broke the school record for total offense. Matt Pirolli just completed his first season as the wide receivers coach at Central Bucks West High School (Pa.). In 2011 Pirolli was a receiver on Kutztown’s historic PSAC conference championship team. The two coaches share six essential drills for wide receivers.

  1. Out Gauntlet Drill
  2. Dig Window Drill
  3. Minnesota Drill
  4. Clemson End Zone Drill
  5. Clemson Comeback Drill
  6. Sideline 49er Drill

With the advent of items known as wide receiver chutes or doors, the receiver coach finally has some props he can utilize at practice. Wide receiver doors are tubular frames that sit on the ground, forcing the player to move through them with a low pad level. They are available in football gear catalogs, or they can be custom-made by using PVC materials. Simply put, the wide receiver doors are the best tool invented to teach low pad level, route expression, top end footwork and a variety of other key receiver fundamentals.

1 THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT OF OFFENSIVE FOOTBALL IS BALL SECURITY. By using one WR door and three hand shields we created the Out Gauntlet Drill. It’s a simple, fast-paced, easy-to-organize ball security drill that reinforces several key fundamentals (Diagram 1). The WR door is placed near the top of the numbers and the sideline, Five yards away from the coach who is throwing. Three other players with hand shields are deployed five yards apart, a yard from the sideline. the receiver executes a five-yard out cut, making a 90-degree cut and snapping his head, eyes and hands around to find the football. after he secures the catch in his sideline arm, he quickly turns up field and attacks each of the three defenders. the receiver uses a dip-and-rip technique to create leverage as he blasts through the three defenders. The defenders are trying to squeeze the receiver out of bounds.

4 WE USE THE CLEMSON END ZONE DRILL (DIAGRAM 4) TO WORK ON LEARNING HOW TO NAVIGATE IN THE CONFINED SPACES OF THE END ZONE.The receiver starts at the back end line and makes two 90-degree breaks before finishing in the back corner of the end zone. The coach stands out around the 10 yard line and delivers a variety of throws to challenge the receiver in confined space. it is important to force the receiver to adjust to throws that are both high and behind him. These two-plane adjustment catches are very difficult, yet occur often. Focus on the ball. Feel the end line. a final coaching point with end zone receptions is the skill of “clearing” the ball away from the defender.

Wide receivers play an important role on the gridiron. Successful receptions can lead to big gains for an offense as they march down the field. To become a positive playmaker, receivers need to fine-tune multiple skills and talents. From catching and route running to blocking and field awareness, there’s a lot of training required at this pivotal football position.

To make the most of every workout, there are a number of drills available to receivers. Build your training regimen for everyday improvement with help from this Pro Tips collection of the best wide receiver drills.

Football Drills for Receivers and Defensive Backs

Because of their on-field talents, many receivers can also pull double duty as defensive backs. With only so much time to practice, it can be beneficial to work on drills that can help you on both sides of the ball. Use these football drills to master your footwork, catching and movement to be an offensive and defensive threat this season.

Nelson Agholor on Running a Curl Route

A curl route is one of the most common patterns in a receiver’s route tree. In this play, the receiver runs downfield, reverses course and comes back toward the quarterback for the catch. Discover how to shed your defender in this effective drill from football pro Nelson Agholor.

Nelson Agholor on Getting a Good Release at the Line

Being stymied by a defender can throw you off your route and get you out of sync with your quarterback. But getting a good jump at the start of each play can be the first step in successfully making a catch. Help improve your lateral and linear acceleration to gain separation as professional football player Nelson Agholor takes you through this drill.

Nelson Agholor’s Catching Drill for Fending Off Defensive Backs

When dealing with defenders, you need to have the proper hand skills and aggression at the point of contact. Professional football player Nelson Agholor uses this helpful football drill to counter those attacks. Discover how the towel drill can help you win the battle for the ball.

Nelson Agholor on Hand Combat Techniques for Wide Receivers

As a wide receiver, your hands aren’t just for catching the football. You also need to challenge defenders at the line of scrimmage and gain separation through force. Practice your techniques and prepare for the “fistfight in a phone booth” with these wide receiver drills. Learn the club rip, club swim and windshield wiper moves to improve your chances at the line.

One-Hand Catching Drill for Receivers

Sometimes, all you need is one hand to make a catch worthy of any highlight reel. But making that catch doesn’t have to come down to luck. Find out how to improve your one-handed catching ability on the gridiron with this fun receiver drill.

Pro Tips Guide to Fumble Recovery

It’s an unavoidable nuisance in the sport of football. Whether through shoddy grip, slippery conditions or just an impressive tackle, fumbles are going to happen. Make sure you know how to recover the ball with the proper form and technique to keep your offense on the field.

Wide Receiver Tips: Gaining Yards After the Catch

Congratulations, you’ve caught the ball. But the play is not over just yet. Gaining yards after the catch can be the difference between a first down or fourth and out. Learn how to secure the ball and turn up field for positive yardage with this drill made to improve your tenacity.

Wide Receiver Tips: Blocking Techniques

Not every play is going to call for you to haul in a successful reception. If you want to be a true team player as a wide receiver, you must be a good blocker. The mirror drill can help you work on engaging your defender and disrupting their attempts at stopping the run. Learn the ins and outs to this wide receiver drill and add another skill to your on-field abilities.

Wide Receiver Tips for Catching the Football

Hand placement is crucial when trying to catch the football. Without it, you can risk dropping the pass, stalling your offense’s drive. Use these receiver drills to work on the proper hand placement for multiple passing scenarios so you can get ready to haul in your next touchdown.

Wide Receiver Tips: Using the Four-Cone Drill for Proper Route Running

Running a solid route can help improve your chances of catching the ball. With the right footwork and agility, you can create space between you and the defender for an easier reception. The four-cone drill can help train quickness, body control and change of direction for improved passing prowess. Find out how to set up and perform this workout with these Pro Tips.

Wide Receiver Tips: Getting Off the Ball with Power and Speed

Having a strong release at the line of scrimmage can start your receiving route on a high note. Having a plan for your first step can help you fool defenders and create a better target for your quarterback. A great way to fine-tune your release and first step is with the ball takeoff drill. Discover the setup and instruction for this workout with these Pro Tips from the gridiron.

Football Receiver Drills: Sideline Awareness and Ball Security

When a pass takes you toward the sideline, it’s important to have the right footwork and catch control. Being able to secure the ball while also keeping a foot in bounds can help keep your offense moving positively. Train your feet and hands for those crucial sideline catches with this receiver drill.

Add to your wide receiver training with this Pro Tips collection and keep your opponents on their toes. Make each catch a potential highlight with these drills and exercises.

Looking for more offensive drills to improve your gridiron training? Take some snaps with these exercises from our Pro Tips collection of the best quarterback drills.

Wide receivers play an important role on the gridiron. Successful receptions can lead to big gains for an offense as they march down the field. To become a positive playmaker, receivers need to fine-tune multiple skills and talents. From catching and route running to blocking and field awareness, there’s a lot of training required at this pivotal football position.

To make the most of every workout, there are a number of drills available to receivers. Build your training regimen for everyday improvement with help from this Pro Tips collection of the best wide receiver drills.

Football Drills for Receivers and Defensive Backs

Because of their on-field talents, many receivers can also pull double duty as defensive backs. With only so much time to practice, it can be beneficial to work on drills that can help you on both sides of the ball. Use these football drills to master your footwork, catching and movement to be an offensive and defensive threat this season.

Nelson Agholor on Running a Curl Route

A curl route is one of the most common patterns in a receiver’s route tree. In this play, the receiver runs downfield, reverses course and comes back toward the quarterback for the catch. Discover how to shed your defender in this effective drill from football pro Nelson Agholor.

Nelson Agholor on Getting a Good Release at the Line

Being stymied by a defender can throw you off your route and get you out of sync with your quarterback. But getting a good jump at the start of each play can be the first step in successfully making a catch. Help improve your lateral and linear acceleration to gain separation as professional football player Nelson Agholor takes you through this drill.

Nelson Agholor’s Catching Drill for Fending Off Defensive Backs

When dealing with defenders, you need to have the proper hand skills and aggression at the point of contact. Professional football player Nelson Agholor uses this helpful football drill to counter those attacks. Discover how the towel drill can help you win the battle for the ball.

Nelson Agholor on Hand Combat Techniques for Wide Receivers

As a wide receiver, your hands aren’t just for catching the football. You also need to challenge defenders at the line of scrimmage and gain separation through force. Practice your techniques and prepare for the “fistfight in a phone booth” with these wide receiver drills. Learn the club rip, club swim and windshield wiper moves to improve your chances at the line.

One-Hand Catching Drill for Receivers

Sometimes, all you need is one hand to make a catch worthy of any highlight reel. But making that catch doesn’t have to come down to luck. Find out how to improve your one-handed catching ability on the gridiron with this fun receiver drill.

Pro Tips Guide to Fumble Recovery

It’s an unavoidable nuisance in the sport of football. Whether through shoddy grip, slippery conditions or just an impressive tackle, fumbles are going to happen. Make sure you know how to recover the ball with the proper form and technique to keep your offense on the field.

Wide Receiver Tips: Gaining Yards After the Catch

Congratulations, you’ve caught the ball. But the play is not over just yet. Gaining yards after the catch can be the difference between a first down or fourth and out. Learn how to secure the ball and turn up field for positive yardage with this drill made to improve your tenacity.

Wide Receiver Tips: Blocking Techniques

Not every play is going to call for you to haul in a successful reception. If you want to be a true team player as a wide receiver, you must be a good blocker. The mirror drill can help you work on engaging your defender and disrupting their attempts at stopping the run. Learn the ins and outs to this wide receiver drill and add another skill to your on-field abilities.

Wide Receiver Tips for Catching the Football

Hand placement is crucial when trying to catch the football. Without it, you can risk dropping the pass, stalling your offense’s drive. Use these receiver drills to work on the proper hand placement for multiple passing scenarios so you can get ready to haul in your next touchdown.

Wide Receiver Tips: Using the Four-Cone Drill for Proper Route Running

Running a solid route can help improve your chances of catching the ball. With the right footwork and agility, you can create space between you and the defender for an easier reception. The four-cone drill can help train quickness, body control and change of direction for improved passing prowess. Find out how to set up and perform this workout with these Pro Tips.

Wide Receiver Tips: Getting Off the Ball with Power and Speed

Having a strong release at the line of scrimmage can start your receiving route on a high note. Having a plan for your first step can help you fool defenders and create a better target for your quarterback. A great way to fine-tune your release and first step is with the ball takeoff drill. Discover the setup and instruction for this workout with these Pro Tips from the gridiron.

Football Receiver Drills: Sideline Awareness and Ball Security

When a pass takes you toward the sideline, it’s important to have the right footwork and catch control. Being able to secure the ball while also keeping a foot in bounds can help keep your offense moving positively. Train your feet and hands for those crucial sideline catches with this receiver drill.

Add to your wide receiver training with this Pro Tips collection and keep your opponents on their toes. Make each catch a potential highlight with these drills and exercises.

Looking for more offensive drills to improve your gridiron training? Take some snaps with these exercises from our Pro Tips collection of the best quarterback drills.

A record-setting college coach and champion high school coach share six essential drills for WRs.

By Steve Heck and Matt Pirolli, FNF Coaches Contributors

Steve Heck is in his ninth year as the wide receiver coach at Kutztown University. In 2015, The Kutztown offense broke the school record for total offense. Matt Pirolli just completed his first season as the wide receivers coach at Central Bucks West High School (Pa.). In 2011 Pirolli was a receiver on Kutztown’s historic PSAC conference championship team. The two coaches share six essential drills for wide receivers.

  1. Out Gauntlet Drill
  2. Dig Window Drill
  3. Minnesota Drill
  4. Clemson End Zone Drill
  5. Clemson Comeback Drill
  6. Sideline 49er Drill

With the advent of items known as wide receiver chutes or doors, the receiver coach finally has some props he can utilize at practice. Wide receiver doors are tubular frames that sit on the ground, forcing the player to move through them with a low pad level. They are available in football gear catalogs, or they can be custom-made by using PVC materials. Simply put, the wide receiver doors are the best tool invented to teach low pad level, route expression, top end footwork and a variety of other key receiver fundamentals.

1 THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT OF OFFENSIVE FOOTBALL IS BALL SECURITY. By using one WR door and three hand shields we created the Out Gauntlet Drill. It’s a simple, fast-paced, easy-to-organize ball security drill that reinforces several key fundamentals (Diagram 1). The WR door is placed near the top of the numbers and the sideline, Five yards away from the coach who is throwing. Three other players with hand shields are deployed five yards apart, a yard from the sideline. the receiver executes a five-yard out cut, making a 90-degree cut and snapping his head, eyes and hands around to find the football. after he secures the catch in his sideline arm, he quickly turns up field and attacks each of the three defenders. the receiver uses a dip-and-rip technique to create leverage as he blasts through the three defenders. The defenders are trying to squeeze the receiver out of bounds.

4 WE USE THE CLEMSON END ZONE DRILL (DIAGRAM 4) TO WORK ON LEARNING HOW TO NAVIGATE IN THE CONFINED SPACES OF THE END ZONE.The receiver starts at the back end line and makes two 90-degree breaks before finishing in the back corner of the end zone. The coach stands out around the 10 yard line and delivers a variety of throws to challenge the receiver in confined space. it is important to force the receiver to adjust to throws that are both high and behind him. These two-plane adjustment catches are very difficult, yet occur often. Focus on the ball. Feel the end line. a final coaching point with end zone receptions is the skill of “clearing” the ball away from the defender.