A snap count in football refers to the numbers and other words a quarterback yells to his team before the football is snapped. He is using codes to communicate to his offense and to make the defense unaware of the play that is coming. There can be a lot of information relayed in a snap count or the words can mean nothing at all–that is for the defense to figure out, if they can.
How important is it to change up the snap count in youth football? In my humble opinion, it is one of the most important tools you should have in your arsenal.
Learning how do go on a different snap count in youth football has been one of the primary things I work on with my offense from day one. In our system, we need to be able to go on a silent snap and any one of our four basic cadence calls. Once we have mastered this, we then work on a longer snap count. We even have a snap count in youth football that never snaps the ball until a keyword is spoken, then we snap the ball a certain amount of calls after the keyword. This is very powerful and keeps the defense off guard making it close to impossible to jump the snap count in youth football.
The one thing you need to beware of is when the defense starts calling out signals or starts repeating your snap counts in youth football. If this happens you should contact the officials and let them know what is going on.
Think the snap count is only important at the youth level? Guess again as you remember this past weekend’s games where on more than one occasion the 49er’s and Giants used the snap count to help win games.
Over the year, I have won many games just by manipulating the defense with the snap count. If the defense is last I use a silent count. If the opponent is aggressive, I use a longer count.
By keeping the defense off guard, we can gain an advantage when on offense.