How to Shotgun Snap a Football

Many people that coach and play football are looking for information on how to shotgun snap a football. The shotgun formation is when the quarterback stands three to four feet behind the center and the center snaps the ball into the air. The other option is to have the quarterback right over the center when taking the snap. This is the more traditional formation.  

One advantage of shotgun snapping a football is that the quarterback does not have to drop back as far to make a pass. When the quarterback catches the snap, he is already far enough to make a pass and only needs to take a couple steps back. When a quarterback is over center, it is sometimes necessary to take five or seven steps back into the pocket to make a pass. The shotgun formation can give the quarterback more time to make a decision before passing the football.

Things you'll need:

  • Football
  • Another person
  1. Find a comfortable stance to snap the football. It is good to have the feet about shoulder-width apart. The knees need to be bent at a level where one hand is able to grip the football. Some use the off hand as a guide hand, while others put the off hand on the ground to achieve better balance. This is up to the person snapping the football or the coach.
  2. The football should be gripped much like how a quarterback grips the ball. The objective is to throw a spiral to the quarterback so it is easily caught and already in position to be thrown without much adjustment after the shotgun snap is received.
  3. Practice the snap to a quarterback as well as a snap to a placeholder for a field goal and a punter. These are each snapped different distances, so it is important to be well-practiced at snapping each different distance.

Many offenses operate almost exclusively out of the shotgun formation. Most offenses utilize this formation at some point, so it is important to learn how to shotgun snap a football. With enough practice, learning how to shotgun snap a football is something that can easily be mastered.

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