FNF Coaches Talk — College Rule Changes, Personnel Formations, HS Coach Saves Boy From Drowning

FNF Coaches Talk

Good afternoon, Coaches. We’ve got three stories for you today.

1. What — If Any — College Football Rules Need Changing? (247sports)

A couple of rules changes are coming to college football. Earlier this year the NCAA Football Rules Committee suggested new rules regarding player safety – those on targeting and blindside blocks and kickoff returns, and to avoid overtime games going too long. Those rules will be implemented this year.

That doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for more change. Almost every serious follower of college football is likely to think that a rule is unfair and would like to see it changed.

For instance, some believe that if overtime periods started with each team getting the ball further from the goalline – perhaps at midfield rather than the 25 – the issue might be settled more quickly. But would it be as exciting?

So, what does this writer suggest?

My first is that officials call the rule against ineligible receivers (almost always offensive linemen) downfield, and call it consistently. The so-called RPOs (run-pass options) in which the offensive linemen are more than three yards beyond the line of scrimmage are unfair to defenders, who have to key on the offensive line action to determine if a play is a run or a potential pass.
Second, what about offensive targeting? A number of targeting calls against defensive players come when the offensive player, usually a running back or receiver, ducks his head just before contact, thus initiating the helmet-to-helmet call that almost always goes against the defender.
Third, also not a rules change, would be that officials call pass interference as the rule is written. When the ball is in the air, it seems that in most cases the intended receiver – the offensive player – is given the benefit of the doubt on any contact. By rule, both offensive and defensive players have the same right to the ball, but offensive interference is far less likely to be called.

What rule change would you suggest at the high school level?

2. What is 11 personnel? A guide to NFL offensive personnel packages. (For the Win)

NFL teams have multiple lineups, and they use a numbering system to label them all. It’s a simple two-digit system: The first digit represents how many running backs are on the field. The second number represents how many tight ends are on the field. So if a team is in 12 personnel, there is one running back on the field and two tight ends. With five skill players on the field at once — the other six spots are filled by the QB and five offensive linemen — that leaves two spots for wide receivers.

With the game being spread out more and more, 11 personnel has become the dominant package across the league. With four receivers (three wideouts and one tight end) on the line of scrimmage, the defense has to account for four immediate vertical threats while also having to defend seven run gaps. The tight end can also stay in to block, creating a seven-man pass protection. 11 personnel allows the offense to get creative with formations: Offenses can line up in a three-by-one formation in order to isolate their best receiver to one side; they can line up in a two-by-two to keep things balanced; or they can split the back out wide and go empty.

To look at the other variations of spread formations, check out the story.

What personnel grouping do you use most often on offense?

3. Central High School (Fla.) head football coach saves 7-year-old boy from drowning in Florida (ABC News)

Central High School head football coach Curt Jones was in the right place at the right time this week in Panama City Beach, Florida.

His family says Coach Jones prevented a 7-year-old boy from drowning in the ocean on Monday.

Coach Jones tells NewsChannel 9 that lifeguards on the beach had put red flags up, indicating “no swimming.”

Jones says he saw a boy standing waist-deep in the water, who was then pulled out to sea by a riptide.

With waves breaking over his head, Jones swam 50 yards to rescue the boy. He managed to pull the boy safely back to shore.

In what ways have your leadership skills helped outside of your job as football coach?

What’s driving the conversation in your locker room? Email Managing Editor Dan Guttenplan or Tweet us @fnfcoaches. Don’t forget to use that hashtag #FNFCoachesTalk!