Gameplanning – Spread Offense Tips

Course Update

Gameplanning – Spread Offense Tips

Today’s post comes from an email question from Coach Jeff Governale. He had a few questions about a few topics related to Gameplanning that I thought were relevant to all of us. So, I thought I would let you in on a little part of our conversation.


Let’s start with this…I hate scout cards. There is no better way to slow down your practice tempo than making your scout defense read a card every single play. Some of you may have read this post I wrote on practice efficiency. I think it speaks to what we are talking about. [ http:// ]

The Whole point of a no huddle system is that, if you do it correctly, it allows you to run a ton of plays in practice. So, while your opponent may get 12-15 plays in their team period, you get 40-50. Here is how I handle it. I put two coaches in charge of the scout team. One handles the front 7 and the other handles the secondary. It is the responsibility of these coaches to get their scout team lined up and get them to mimic the opponent’s defense. Here is the thing…our defense is really multiple. We have a 30 and a 40 and we play man, Cover 2, Cover 3 and Cover 4. So, we usually have a call that is similar to what our opponent does. I put it on the coaches to give us the look we need. But I also want them to adjust and try to beat us…don’t just be static because the other team showed something on film. That makes it fun for the scout team and also mimics what we will see on Friday. If we are killing their Cover 3, they
are going o adjust. So, I let my scout coaches adjust too.

I remember, early in my career, I was running the scout team O, and our first team D kept read blitzing their safety. So, we called a Tight end delay and scored on the first team. The head coach lost it…”Erick, they don’t run that play. They aren’t going to do that on Friday. Give us the look we need. Stick to the scout card.” I completely disagree with that premise. My thought has always been that just because we haven’t seen it on film doesn’t mean they won’t do it. Coaches are smart. And, if the scout team can score on you with a Tight End delay, the opponent is going to do the same thing to you. So, that is the approach I take. If the scout D can blitz and sack us…even if we haven’t seen the blitz before…then we need to get better at pass pro.


Ok..scouting and gameplanning. We could talk about this one for a while. But, basically I start with what is going to work in the passing game and go from there. I wrote a whole series of posts about this topic last fall. Even if you read it last year, they would be really good reminders. I have included the links below.

Man Beaters
Cover 2 Beaters
Cover 3 Beaters
Cover 4 Beaters


On my game day sheet, I try to keep it really simple. I like to make 2 scripts with my favorite 12 plays mixed up in different orders. If I have done a good job of identifying our best 12 to 15 plays, we might just stick with these plays all night…remember if they can’t stop it, keep running it.

On my call sheet, I also like to have a list of my favorite 3 plays for various situations, just so that if the pressure starts to mount I don’t draw a blank or call something that I regret. Here are my categories:

3rd and inches
3rd and 1-3 yards
3rd and 3-5 yards
3rd and 5-9 yards
3rd and 10-15 yards
3rd and 15-20 yards
2 Point Plays
Specials/Trick Plays
1st and 10 Aggressive
1st and 10 Conservative
Sudden Change Attack Plays
Quick Strike

If I am in the zone, I might not look at these categories all night. But, filling out the three plays in each of these categories makes me reevaluate every week…what are we good at? What can we execute? What would we call if the game was on the line? I think these are really important questions to ask every single week. And, even the process of creating the sheet every week makes me ask those questions.

Ok, let’s stop there for today. As always, send me a question and I will do my best to get back to you ASAP. Good luck this week coach. Keep Chucking It.