10 Running Back Tips

If you want to know how to be a good running back, here are 10 running back tips you may find useful. These are ten very helpful tips that will probably help you when playing football. When you're a running back, you need to know how to run properly and hold the ball properly otherwise the game will be lost.

  1. Watch the line straight ahead. Do not look at the ball when you have it. This will help you stay focused on the game and your objective. Your objective as a running back is to run with the ball as far as possible.
  2. Get to full speed as soon as you step out of your stance. This will be very effective because you will have reached maximum speed within seconds, making sure you achieve maximum distance as quickly as possible.
  3. Explode through the hole. Don't stop or slow down and keep your knees up.  Exploding through the hole is to, metaphorically, blast through the opening that your teammates provide for you. From then on, just keep running. Do not look back, do not slow down and do not stop!
  4. Keep your shoulders down and your butt low for better leverage. This will prevent you from tripping at takeoff. It will also make your takeoffs faster and more successful.
  5. Once you are clear of the opposition, put the ball in your arm closer to the sideline. You can relax a bit and move the ball away from your body slightly.  However, once you are near the opposition, squeeze the ball tightly again. Keeping the ball in your arm closer to the sideline will mean that it's further away from opposing players. It will also mean that if you happen to fumble, the ball will be more likely to go out of bounds rather than picked up by the opposing team. As a running back, you will often want to run the ball down the sidelines, so this tip is very useful.
  6. On contact, grasp the football with both hands. This will make it harder for the defense to pry the football away. Also, it will be easier to hold onto the football when you are tackled, which will happen very often to a running back.
  7. During takeoff, do not hesitate. Hesitation can ruin an entire play because you didn't react instantly. Hesitating takes up precious time that you'll need to run. In the NFL, many plays have been botched because the running back didn't react instantly.
  8. In your stance, place you feet close together. This leads to a more stable and faster takeoff.
  9. Create the correct "cradle" for accepting hand offs. This "cradle" is when you keep your elbow closest to the quarterback up and your other elbow down near your waist. As a running back, you will be receiving handoffs. Using the correct cradle allows for more secure handoffs and you are less likely to drop the ball.
  10. Grip the football properly. Once you put the football in one hand, place it securely in your fingers with your index and middle fingers gripped around the nose and squeeze the ball into your body with your elbow and arm.
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