I am a believer that if you ignore special teams they will bite you in the “you know what”. In over 20 years of coaching, my teams have NEVER returned a kickoff for a touchdown, until this year. I have also never had one returned against any of my teams.
I will examine the special teams below and give you my perspective.
- PAT – I have won and lost many games due to PAT’s. I would rank this as the most important of all special teams. Do everything you can to find a kicker as it will make your season easier.
- Kick Off Normal – As I stated above, I have never had one run back on me. I do believe it needs to be practiced every day to keep that streak alive.
- Kick Off Onsides – I have won and lost games due to onside kicks. I practice them daily.
- Kick Receiving Normal & Onsides – I have never run a kickoff back for a TD, and over the years have recovered most onside kicks against us.
- Punt Return – I have had decent luck returning punts. I think only once for a TD but overall decent.
- Punt – Important as long as you kick away from the opponent. They always have their best stud back there so you will want to keep it away from him.
I live by the motto of keeping special teams as “unspecial” as possible. I do not want unnecessary turnovers because we are “trying to make something happen”. Whenever a team tries to force something to happen, something usually does happen and it is never good.