45 Football Drills for All Ages, Skill Levels, and Positions

By Coach Martin | Football Drills


Having a list of effective football drills is important for every coach.

Football is a sport that, maybe more so than a lot of others, takes a specific set of skills that are unique to the sport.

While characteristics such as speed, agility and strength are all important, there are a lot of football skills that only pertain to certain positions.

That's why in practice, youth football teams will start by breaking players into their certain positions for individual drills.

While there are definitely skills that all positions can learn and work on together, these position-specific drills will teach the unique things that each position needs to learn to succeed. 

While these drills are learned first at a young age, they are reinforced and built upon as players get older and advance to upper levels of the game. 

Here are 45 football drills for all ages, skill levels and positions.

They are broken down by position and type of drill.

Individual Football Drills

a. Running Back Drills

running back drills

Running backs need to gain a lot of mobility and learn how to avoid tacklers.

They also need to learn how to see the open field, make cuts, catch passes and block.

These five football drills will teach running backs how to make cuts, how to work on their footwork, how to use their hands to catch pitches and how to improve their vision of the field.

The drills for running backs include:

> The Jump Cut
> Line Response Drill
> Ladder Drill
> Cone Hops
> Sweep Drill

Click here to check out the running back drills.

b. Quarterback Drills

quarterback drills

Quarterbacks need to learn a lot of skills that are very unique to their position.

No other player on a football team will need to work on arm strength and throwing the football.

Nor will any other position serve as the leader of the offense.

These five quarterback drills will work on a player's arm strength, their ability to find open receivers their ability to evade pressure and throw on the run from outside the pocket, and their ability to connect with receivers on specific routes. 

The drills for quarterbacks include:

> Knee Drills
> Scan the Field
> Sprint Out
> Escaping Pressure
> Hitting Routes

Click here to check out the quarterback drills.

c. Offensive Line Drills

offensive line drills

Offensive linemen also have unique jobs.

They play a very physical position that requires them to engage in constant physical contact with players lined up directly opposite them.

They also start all plays in a three-point stance, unlike most other players.

These football drills will help linemen work on their starting stance, deliver a good first blow to gain body control, stay in front of defenders, keep their bodies under control and move from side to side.

The drills for offensive linemen include:

> Stance
> Set and Punch
> Mirror
> Barrel Drill
> Shuttle

Click here to check out the offensive line drills.

d. Defensive Line Drills

defensive line drills

Defensive linemen have a similar role that is particularly challenging from a physical standpoint.

They, too, will start plays mostly in a three-point stance and endure physical contact on every play.

These drills will help DLs learn how to gain control of OLs, shed their blocks, be evasive, sack the quarterback and pursue the football.

The drills for defensive linemen include:

> Hand Fighting
> Shedding Blocks
> Punch and Evade
> Sack Drill
> Scramble Drill

Click here to check out the defensive line drills.

e. Linebacker Drills

linebacker drills

Linebackers need to combine great vision and recognition with strong ball pursuit and tackling skills.

Linebackers serve as the leaders of the defense, and must react quickly and smartly based on their reads.

These drills will help LBs to pursue on an angle, get depth and then slide from side to side, get free from blocks, make tackles in the open field and pursue ball carriers.

The drills for linebackers include:

> Angle Drill
> Backpedal and Shuffle
> Shed Block and Tackle
> Open Field Tackling
> Cutback Drill

Click here to check out the linebacker drills.

f. Wide Receiver Drills

wide receiver drills

Wide receivers need to be quick, fast and elusive players.

They need to find their way open from defenders, while running crisp routes and making catches.

These football drills will help WRs work on their reaction time, their hands, their footwork their route running and their ability to find the football in the air.

The drills for wide receivers include:

> Sit-Up and Catch
> Wall Ball
> Cone Footwork Drill
> Hide & Seek
> Track the Ball

Click here to check out the wide receiver drills.

Team Football Drills

g. Conditioning Drills

football conditioning drills

All players, regardless of position, need to work on their conditioning to become great at the game of football.

The sport requires not just a lot of running, but a lot of running and exertion of energy in quick spurts. 

These conditioning drills will help players build the stamina they need to make it through an entire football game.

These football drills can be run all together as a team.

The drills for conditioning include:

> Sprint Ladder
> Four Corners
> Strides
> Sprint and Stride Combo
> Four Quarters Drill

Click here to check out the conditioning drills.

h. Tackling Drills

football tackling drills

All defensive players, regardless of position, need to learn how to tackle properly.

While some players will be stronger at tackling than others, every defender needs to learn how to do it.

These tackling drills will teach the basics of form tackling, exploding out of a stance, wrapping ball carriers up and tackling at different points on the field.

The drills for tackling include:

> Lift Drill
> Four-Point Explosion
> Angle Tackling Drill
> Sideline Tackling
> Mirror Drill

Click here to check out the tackling drills.

i. Agility Drills

football agility drills

Once again, all football players need to build their agility.

Whether they play quarterback or free safety, agility is an important skill to have to succeed at football. 

These football drills, which can be run as an entire team, will work on players' agility and make them better at playing the game.

The drills for agility include:

> The Flying 30
> High Knees
> Shuttle
> Shuffle Mirror
> Backpedal

Click here to check out the agility drills.

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