Youth Football Punt Return Right
Getting a score on a punt return can really swing the momentum in your team’s favor. Having a solid punt return will also help with the field position battle. Here is a play we actually scored two touchdowns on in this weekends game.
There are 6 defensive linemen and there are 2 linebackers, 2 corners, and 1 return player. The 6 defensive line must line up head up on each offensive player. Now there are two ways to do this. One, you can rush the 6 and go for a block. Two, you can have your defensive linemen not let the offensive linemen release, and block them down the field.
The 2 linebackers run back to the punt returner and lead block to the right. Make sure they are aware that a fake is possible. They do not run back to block until the ball is punted. The linebackers are looking to block from the outside in. The two corners will run back to the punt returner. If the punt team has gunners the corners must run with them and block them down the field.
The goal of this play is to have blockers create a wall, sealing the punt coverage inside. It is sort of like a kick return, you want to bring the wall to the ball. Since the ball is not always punted to the right or the middle, you should teach your return team to run this return to the left side as well.
Special Teams in Youth Football is often overlooked. My coaching staff and I spend a large amount of time on special teams in practice, and it pays off. Do not overlook special teams, getting a score and winning the field position battle on specials teams can really help your team achieve victory.