The Football Coaching Podcast with Joe Daniel

Coach Joe Daniel from helps you build a better football team at any level. Youth Football Coaches, Middle School Football Coaches, High School Football Coaches, College Football Coaches and Semi-Professional Football Coaches will get great ideas and discussion from The Football Coaching Podcast.
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The Football Coaching Podcast with Joe Daniel









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Apr 7, 2017

There’s a lot of ways to get your Offensive Formations to your players. None of them are the right way, you just need a system. One that’s consistent.

Learning football terms like formation calls is like learning a foreign language. So you can’t be too complex (I don’t know how good your kids are doing in Spanish, ours struggle).

Formations are usually called using a combination of words and numbers. But nothing is universal.

Then there’s the tags. You can get really complicated with tags.

Oh, and motions! Shifts! Trades! It’s endless.

In this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’m going to go into all of that. A whole bunch of different ways you can align your players. And how to put it all together.

One of the formation systems I talked about in this episode is from our Pistol Power Offense System. You can get a Free 3 Video Series on one of the core schemes of that System at

Don’t forget to visit my Twitter Profile Page @footballinfo to vote for next week’s poll topic!

Mar 31, 2017

On this edition of The Football Coaching Podcast, it’s a deep dive into Pattern Read Coverage. What is it, and why should your team run it?

And also… why shouldn’t your team run it? We’ll talk about making the decision.

I’ll talk about the 4 Critical Keys to Coaching Pattern Read Coverage. Then we’ll dive into all of the communication your players have to learn to run a successful pattern read defense.

In this episode I mentioned quite a few resources, and they’re listed below:

Don’t overcomplicate your coaching. Keep it simple so your kids can execute. That’s what The 4-2-5 Defense System is all about.

To get access to free videos on The 4-2-5 Defense System, visit

Mar 24, 2017

For this week’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, Defensive Game Planning won the Twitter Poll! You can vote for next week’s poll topic on my Twitter feed @footballinfo.


This could probably make up a month’s worth of show topics. I decided to focus on one aspect - the scouting.


Gathering enough information to give your football team an advantage. Without going overboard. And without digging through too much information and actually falling behind.


I talk about what information the football coaches need to know. And how much of that do your players actually need?


Then we’ll talk about the Game Planning Call Sheet. If you want to go deeper on that, check my article on 24 Things You Can’t Leave Off Your Defensive Call Sheet.


For more ideas on putting your Defensive Playbook together (after all, you can’t get the call sheet right if you don’t have a foundation), download my free eBook Defensive Installation Manual here.

Mar 17, 2017

The most important skill for a Linebacker is learning how to defeat blocks. A Linebacker should expect to defeat a block before he makes the tackle.

It's also one of the hardest skills to get your Linebackers to execute. The natural tendency is to run around those big guys trying to push you. 

I've studied a lot on coaching linebackers. The best resource I've found is Lou Tepper's Complete Linebacking book:

If you haven't read it yet, you need to get it. Every football coach should check it out. 

In this episode, I talk about 3 styles of block destruction. We focus on the core principles including the strong inside foot, leverage and exploding the hips through the blocker. Then you'll shed the block and go make a tackle!

Mar 10, 2017

You voted and this is the topic that won! Coaching Without Leadership means coaching when you don’t have those leaders on your team. The one’s that would make your life so much easier.

Here’s the real secret. You have leaders. You have leadership.

Now you have to be the coach. Develop it. And there’s a lot going on here.

For this podcast, I referenced my interview with Coach Chris Zablocki and his Pyramid of Priorities. Making good decisions is what you’re really after.

I also focus on the 5 Levels of Leadership that John Maxwell talks in this video. Maxwell’s books are a must for football coaches.

Finally, you can get instant access to Chris Zablocki’s web clinic on leadership from last year, as well as my Max Motivation for Peak Performance eCourse when you join JDFB Insiders. Click here to get all the details.

Mar 3, 2017

Get ready for an in-depth look at Coaching the Outside Linebackers. Or Overhang Safeties. Whatever you want to call them!

In this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’m going through the foundations of coaching your force players in the defense.

This is mainly from the perspective of a 4-4 or 4-2-5 Defense, or a 3-5-3 or 33 Stack Defense. But you can pick up some ideas no matter what defensive system you’re running. Cover 3, Quarters, Cover 1 or Cover 2 all get discussed.

I’m going through the ASKA pre-snap progression for your players. Stolen from TCU, as so many things I talk about are.

ASKA stand for Alignment, Stance, Key, Assignment. It’s a great way to build your pre-snap checklist that your players run through.

I’ll share the how and why of everything your Outside Linebackers need to do. Include 4 different Outside Linebacker Keys for determining Run or Pass and identifying the play.

Outside Linebackers take a lot of work. This is the guy that most Offensive Coordinators will look to put in conflict. Make him wrong no matter what. This episode of The Football Coaching Podcast will help to arm you against the bad guys!

Looking for the Umbrella Principle video? Click here to watch the video. Then you can sign up to get the entire 3 video series on Coaching The 4-2-5 Defense System delivered directly to your inbox for free.

Feb 24, 2017

I’ve talked a lot about The Pistol Power Offense System. But I don’t know if I’ve ever talked about what it really is.

At least, not on this podcast.

The Pistol Power Offense System is just the One Back Offense. Run from Pistol… and under center, and gun. It’s just a fancy name.

What’s the One Back Offense? Pretty simple. We’ve got a feature back. Then use a hybrid H-Back to move around and set up the defense.

That hybrid guy replaces your Fullback in a Pro I Offense. He’s just more versatile. Most of the plays are the same.

Listen to this episode to  hear the details of the running plays in the offensive playbook. Power, Counter, Zone, Stretch and Truck Toss.

I get into the basics of each play, along with how and why they’re packaged together. It’s a good introduction to the One Back Offense for your football team.

When you’re ready to dive all the way in, join the Pistol Power Offense System!

Feb 17, 2017

Size matters. Especially when you don’t have it.

Coaching with smaller players means you have to make some adjustments. Your undersized team can still have success if you don’t hit the panic button.

In today’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’ll give you 8 keys to Coaching With Smaller Players.

This is probably the most common question I get asked. Or some form of it.

“My team is undersized. What should I run?”

The answer is… changing the playbook won’t change a thing. It’s how you use your scheme that will make the difference (no matter what it is).

So don’t panic about all those little guys. Listen to this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast for ideas on how to coach your smaller players.

And if you need a System - one that works no matter who you’re coaching - check out The 4-2-5 Defense System. You can get Instant Access when you sign up now!

Feb 10, 2017

The 4-2-5 Defense is probably my favorite defense. And what I’m best known for.

In today’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, we’re going to talk about the basics of this 8 man, even front defense.

This is the same as a 4-4 Defense. Or a 6-2 Defense. Numbers don’t really matter. Don’t get caught up thinking this is some ‘Spread Defense’.

We’ll go in depth on Defensive End alignment and responsibility. His technique is critical to the 4-2-5 Defense.

This defense is a balanced front. You can flip your players strong and weak, or not flip them. This is an advantage when you’re facing Hurry Up, No Huddle teams.

I’ll also talk about the variety of coverage you can run with your 4-2-5 Defense. Stay a single high safety Cover 3 or Cover 1, or get fancy. Like TCU’s Split Field Coverage.

Finally, we’ll go in depth on position personnel. Who do you need in order to run a dominating 4-2-5 Defense? I’ll give you details.

I’ve worked with over 3,000 coaches on this incredible defensive scheme. To learn all about my 4-2-5 Defense System, visit and get Instant Access today.

Feb 4, 2017

When’s the right time to start applying for jobs? That’s easy. 

You can always apply for the job. The interview experience in invaluable. 

But when are you ready to take a head coaching job? 

“It depends.”

That’s the answer we’ve heard for years. In this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’m going to nail down the real right  time to be a new Head Coach.

Just a warning. I don’t want to be a head coach right now. I have never been a head coach. A lot of this is a little tongue-in-cheek.

But it’s what I’ve observed. What I believe. What would have to be true for me, if I were to pursue head coaching jobs. 

My sources are a few head coaches I’ve worked for, and hundreds of head coaches I’ve worked with. It’s a hard job. 

So… thinking about it? Or just want to reminisce about the time before you sold your soul to be a head football coach? (that’s tongue-in-cheek too!)

Listen to this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast.

In this episode, I mentioned Coach Chris Fore. He’s THE MAN when you want to put your resume together and prep for your head coaching interviews. Find him at

I also mentioned the Max Motivation for Peak Performance eCourse. This is the definitive guide to building trust with your new team, and creating the culture that all winning teams have. It’s available only by becoming a JDFB Insider Client.


Jan 13, 2017

Champions are made in the Weight Room. Every High School Football Coach talks about how important this time of year is.

This week’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast is all about the keys to having a great off-season in the Weight Room. Getting the most from your football strength training.

On a side note, this episode is 100 episodes after my favorite Football Coaching Podcast of all time… Episode 80 4 Types of Defense.

What makes your football strength training program great?

You need players in the weight room. Sell the program to them. Better yet, get your players that are already committed to sell to new kids.

Then you’ve got to know your facilities. Yeah, you need a weight room. It doesn’t have to be anything special though. Work with what you have.

Then you ned a plan. Laid out. Well thought out. Don’t just wing it.

This season, we’ve got an expert Strength Coach to do all that for you. Chris Lawyer, who runs The Weight Room RVA here in Richmond, VA, has put together an incredible football strength program for you.

 Click here to get the details on JDFB Weight Room 2017

With 40,000 hours of strength coaching hours logged, Chris is a true expert. He’s coached State, National and World Record Holders in powerlifting, weightlifting and strongman. He’s also consulted with plenty of High School and College strength coaches. Chris knows his stuff.

Dec 23, 2016

I’ve only heard one coach ever talk about how loaded his team was. Twice.

He’s won two State Championships.

For the rest of us… we got problems.

The kids are too small. Too slow. Too young. Too soft. Too entitled.

Something’s wrong. For every single one of us.

Probably why coaching is not for everyone.

You get into coaching thinking you know everything. The smartest coaches are the one’s who have never done it.

Then you find out this is a hard gig. The kids don’t run around like they do in Madden.

But the truth is… your players can play. They’re just like everyone else’s players.

Maybe not as big, or as fast, or as… whatever it is. But everyone has shortcomings.

This off-season, figure out what yours are. Get to work addressing them.

Then move on. Time to go to work.

In this episode, I mention the Max Motivation for Peak Performance eCourse along with several of the other resources that are available exclusively as part of JDFB Insiders.

Click here to find out how to get Instant Access to JDFB Insiders!

Dec 17, 2016

Our biggest job as a coach is to develop character in our players. Best way to do that is to model it.

There’s a lot of problems in society today. We know football can help develop our young men to overcome those problems. Rise above.

And a victim mentality? That’s a big one.

It’s always someone else’s fault. “I can’t!” 

Why not?

Because of this… this… this… oh the list goes on.

As a football coach, we shouldn’t have that mentality. But it creeps up for a lot of us.

I see it all the time.

Stop finding reasons you can’t. Start finding solutions. Finding answers. And then get to work.

This episode of The Football Coaching Podcast is a total rant, by the way.

By the way, JDFB Insiders is a great place to find help for your football team. 1% at a time.

Stop looking for excuses about why you can’t… sign up here for JDFB Insiders.

Dec 9, 2016

You work hard. Is it enough? Are you the right guy for this?

We all worry about whether or not we’ve done all we can. Done it the right way.

Your players only have a few years to play the game. That’s a lot of pressure. Not to mention pressure for the faculty, administration and community.

It’s normal to wonder... Am I a good football coach?

So I made a checklist. And you can download it from Joe Daniel Football.

At some point we all run into tough times. You ask yourself the question. Then you carry on because, well, no one else is going to do it and you love it.

That, coupled with the fact that you’re listening to this podcast, means you probably are a good football coach. But we all need a reminder.

Nov 11, 2016

It's that time of year. Some guys are rolling into the Playoffs. Others are searching for answers. 

This episode of The Football Coaching Podcast is for those guys who know that what you're doing... it isn't working. 

Change your thinking. Your approach. 

Make that change first. Then you can change the scheme. 

I talk about my Pistol Power Offense System in this episode. You can check out the free video series at

If what you're doing on offense isn't working... it's the solution. But not because of the playbook. 

Check out this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast to find out why. 

Nov 4, 2016

You stand on the sidelines in disbelief. We worked on this!

The fans in the stands have their doubts. How could any kid who’s ever been coached make mistake like that!?

The skills that you forget even need to be coached. The skills that everyone should be able to execute.

On paper they seem so easy. But you’ve tried to teach it. You’re cutting years off your life trying to get better at it.

These are the 12 Football Skills that seem so easy that you shouldn’t even have to coach it.

But you do.

And you coach it. And coach it. And coach it.

And they will make the mistake again.

How do I know? Because they make these same mistakes in the NFL, too.

Check out this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast to find out the 12 Football Skills that Seam So Easy (but aren’t)!

In this episode I mention our Pistol Power Offense System and 4-3 Defense System. You can get immediate access to both of those when you sign up for JDFB Insiders today!

Oct 25, 2016

Every coach has the question. How do we turn losers into winners?
Kids need to learn to win. Winning isn’t easy.
Sure, some wins come easy. And if you’re just better than everyone else... that’s easy.
Championship football teams win close games. Tough games.
Go back and look at nearly every undefeated team or Championship team in NCAA Football. They all have a scare somewhere on the schedule.
When your team has a winning mindset, you win those football games. When they don’t... you wilt and die.
Listen to Episode 174 of The Football Coaching Podcast for ideas on how to establish that winning mindset for your football team!
Ready to build the trust factor in your football team? Check out Max Motivation for Peak Performance, available exclusively as part of your JDFB Insider membership 

Sep 30, 2016

It’s one of the most frustrating parts of being a football coach. The scout team.

You work to put all the opponent’s plays down on cards. You show them to a group of guys on your team... wait, these guys are all on your team?

...anyway, hold the card up. Everyone looks. They nod. They head to the line.

The ball is snapped. If the snap doesn’t get fumbled, it’s a small victory.

Then the disaster is on.

Wait, the Guard didn’t pull! We need that guy to pull!

Where’s the Tight End? There’s supposed to be a Tight End on that play! He was WHERE!?

In this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’m sharing ideas on how to make your scout team better.

Just as an FYI, it’s not using color coded cards. I never saw more confused kids than when I did the color coded cards.

None of these are earth shattering. It’s all about building your practice from small to big, just like we teach in JDFB Insiders.

Check out this week’s episode, and start making some changes in your practice planning that will save your sanity!

Sep 23, 2016

Putting together your offensive game plan is critical to the success of your football team. And the most important part of that game plan is your evaluation of the defense.

What do they do best? Where are the weaknesses?
Who are the best players? The worst players?

What are their tendencies? When do they change? (you can get your tendency report faster if you let us tag your game film!)

Then you take that information and put it against your offense. What are you best at? Where are your strengths?
It’s like fitting together puzzle pieces.

This requires honest evaluation. Try to identify your bias. Try to identify the opponent’s bias.

This is the chess match that makes football great.

Check out this week’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast for some game planning tips. And for more in depth analysis on your opponent, use the JDFB Insider membership forums to post your questions.

Sep 15, 2016

Lots of coaches can draw up passing routes. Trick the defense, find the holes in a zone. It’s fun stuff.

But this isn’t 7 on 7. And it ain’t Madden.

You want to throw all those fancy passing concepts? You have to protect your Quarterback.

In Episode 170 we talked about the pass protection technique that you can use. That’s independent of your pass protection scheme.

On this episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, I’m diving into the different protections schemes you can run.

Big on Big protection. Slide protection. Half-Slide protection. Turn Back protection. Sprint protection.

What does it all mean? When should you use each one? How many protections can you install for High School Football?

When you want to go more in depth on pass protection, check out Joe Daniel Football Insiders. Learn the in’s and out’s of our 5 Step Protection in the exclusive JDFB Pistol Power Offense System to give your Quarterback time to throw the football!  (no matter what level you coach!).

Aug 30, 2016

There’s your pass protection scheme, and there’s the technique you use to execute it. Today we’re talking about technique.

You’re probably familiar with kick sliding... that thing you see NFL Offensive Tackles do all the time. But that’s not the only way to protect your quarterback.

Or even the best way to go about it, if you don’t throw the ball much. There’s a few options.

In today’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, we talk about 3 different styles of pass protection...

  1. Kick-Slide Technique
  2. Vertical Set Protection
  3. Lead Step Protection

Each method has it’s advantages and disadvantages. I’ve taught all of them in the past (and will likely use them again in the future, at the right time).

This isn’t a thing where you choose 2 or 3. You choose one technique for the entire season, based on what is best for your football team.

When you want to go more in depth on pass protection, check out Joe Daniel Football Insiders. The Offensive Line Coaching Formula is a 12 hour instructional course including an entire module on how to teach pass protection for your linemen (no matter what level you coach!).

Aug 18, 2016

There are many different ways to coach Linebacker Keys. They all have their merits. None of them are perfect. 

This is probably the most asked question I get at Joe Daniel Football. What should our Linebacker reads be? 

It's pretty simple. What do you like the best? What gets your kids going the fast? 

You need to decide how much room for error you want to leave. How important is it for the keys to be right on paper? 

What your kids can process will be a determining factor. What can they learn? What can they execute? What gets them going fast? 

In this episode, I'll go through several different options for coaching your Linebacker reads. Decide what works best for you and your players!

When you need more detail, check out JDFB Insider. We have the Coaching Linebackers for Peak Performance video, along with detailed reads in all of our defensive courses. It's all included when you sign up for JDFB Insiders membership

Aug 8, 2016

Your players have a million things happening in their lives. And it's increasing all the time. 

Family. Friends. Other sports. Academics. 

Even when your players want to do the right thing... it's difficult.

(most of them want to do the right thing, by the way)

 I recorded this episode completely off-the-cuff. No real preparation, a couple notes on a piece of paper. 

But it is very real. This is important stuff. Not the X's and O's. The stuff that matters. 

I do a lot of surveys of coaches that use Joe Daniel Football and listen to The Football Coaching Podcast. The issues we address in this episode are at the top of your list of problems. 

Players who want to play other sports. Single sport athletes are a big problem in the world today. Not because it's wrong to play one sport. But because it's wrong to play one sport if the kid wants to play other sports. 

What about parents? That's the big issue. It's probably the one that keeps me from being a head coach. Parents are tough to deal with sometimes. They have unreasonable expectations. 

Social life. Kids are getting into a lot more than we ever did. OK, maybe not. But it seems like it. Youth makes stupid decisions. We have to deal with that, and help as best we can.

Expectations are sky high. Every kid, and every parent, thinks they're getting a scholarship. Any talented kid has heard from his uncle who used to play for a semi-pro team that he's definitely going to make it in The League. We have to deal with that, too. 

Listen to Episode 168 of The Football Coaching Podcast for ideas on how to deal with all of this. And for lots more on building relationships that matter with your players, check out the Max Motivation for Peak Performance course that is an exclusive series for JDFB Insider members


[04:03] What is a distracted player?

[04:40] Distracted by other sports

[08:50] Distracted by their own parents

[12:32] Distracted by the social life

[15:40] Distracted by expectations from the people around him

[18:30] Get more ideas for helping your players


Jul 27, 2016

Every football coaching staff needs certain guys. And I put together a list.

It’s the 5 types of football coaches every staff needs to have. Are you one of them?

The truth is you probably fall somewhere on a spectrum for each of these qualities. You have some of them. Some of them, you don’t.

Then you have the 5 types of football coaches no one wants.

These guys are the worst. The guys who kill your team unity. Ruin your enjoyment of the sport.

The types of coaches that need to either change... or get gone.

I put these lists together based on coaches that I have been around. The best and the worst.

There’s probably some more out there. Good and bad. I just haven’t worked with them.

This week’s Football Coaching Podcast was inspired by an email from Kody. If you have a suggestion for a topic you want to hear discussed on The Football Coaching Podcast, please email it to me!

Please take a minute to leave us a review in iTunes for The Football Coaching Podcast. It really helps the podcast continue to grow!

Want to see what JDFB Insider is all about? You can get instant access right now - click here .

Jul 22, 2016

As a Coordinator or a Head Coach, you’re looking at the picture. How does it all work together?

In this week’s episode of The Football Coaching Podcast, we’re talking about looking at your football team from 30,000 feet.

How can you get it all to mesh? Use these 6 little details to get started...

  1. Let go of the ‘little things’ if they don’t affect your big picture.
  2. Know what the non-negotiables are.
  3. Communicate your Vision to the coaches and the team
  4. Put the pieces together without worrying about the individual parts.
  5. Timing is everything. Your football team is a machine.
  6. Constantly adapt. You have to make corrections, without over-correcting.

It’s time to step back and take a look at the big picture!

The Defensive Installation Manual is an in-depth guide on figuring out the big picture for your defense. Click here to download it now.

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