In part 2 of Torrian’s interview with Danny Isidora, an offensive guard for the Kansas City Chiefs, Torrian got to dig into techniques and tricks of the trade. This is a must-watch for any aspiring offensive lineman or football player in general.
These tricks are useful regardless of your position, as it is always beneficial to understand what other positions on the field are looking to accomplish. Check out some of the highlights below.
Where Your Focus Before The Snap
Danny makes a great point in making sure that he goes over the play, snap count, and his responsibilities within the play before every snap. This is crucial, as a false start or missed assignment can completely ruin a drive. So much of the game of football is mental, so taking those extra mental reps will always set you up for success.
After that, Danny is looking at who is lined up across from him and what that players tendencies may be. Understanding what a guy likes to do on certain plays will help to give him an idea of what he may be able to expect. He puts a big emphasis on making sure he gets into his pass blocking set confidently, but doesn’t overset.
He reiterates our above point when he talks about the importance of understanding what the defense is trying to do. Studying and knowing the way that a defense works will give you a big advantage on the offensive line. If you are able to recognize something that may be tipping off a stunt or a blitz, it allows you to get to your spot and simply react to what the defense is throwing at you without being surprised.
Torrian then lists three things that he lives by in pass protection. First, getting out of his stance confidently and athletically. Next, getting to his spot on that play. Third, and maybe most importantly, is the strike. Danny expands on that third point and says that offensive linemen should take the fight to the defensive lineman. If you understand what the defense is trying to do, then as an offensive lineman you can confidently attack and bring the fight to the defensive lineman with an aggressive first strike. Confidence is huge in an offensive lineman, especially in pass protection, so understanding those tips and winning the mental battle are massive steps.
Next, they discussed their philosophies in run blocking. Danny explains that he takes a “lateral lead” and quickly gets his hands on the defender. He emphasizes the importance of keeping his pads down and not winding up the hands. Winding up leaves offensive lineman susceptible to the defender getting into their chest and driving them off their spot in the run game. This can totally blow up a run play, so striking aggressively and “bringing the backside catch hand” allows the offensive lineman to dictate the flow of the play. He then calls out the importance of hitting the defender inside the numbers to avoid getting called for holding penalties.
Danny’s philosophy was the same in outside zone as it was on inside zone. Two of the most important things that he mentions are striking first, striking aggressively, and staying square to the play as opposed to getting his shoulders squared to the sideline.
As you can see, Danny Isidora and Torrian Wilson are both a wealth of knowledge when it comes to playing on the offensive line. Check out the interview to gain more insight into the ins and outs of the position.