Our Football Pre-Game Routine

Our Pre-game Football Routine

I thought it might be helpful to some of you out there to see what has been our pre-game routine for the past few years. Our goal is primarily to get our players warmed up and focused, and provide minimal review of game plans.

Our league allows for no more than one hour of pre-game practice, so we always officially start our pre-game at 60 minutes to game time.

  • 15 minutes before pre-game – Players arrive and check in, QB/C work on snap exchange. Other players run around throwing and catching passes. We keep it light and unorganized, but safe.
  • 00:00 - 00:08 – Warmups - Our “standard” dynamic warmup. This year we might just do plays on air from one of our scripts for warm-ups.
  • 00:08 - 00:10 – Water
  • 00:10 - 00:20 – Indy offense by group, every day drills. These are non contact, light exertion drills that help focus and settle the players. They know these drills by heart.
  • 00:20 - 00:22 – Water
  • 00:22 - 00:37 – Offensive play review, running a script created by our offensive coordinator. For the first 8 minutes or so we will go with just our starting group, then starting doing player by player substitutions.
  • 00:37 - 00:47 – Water and weigh-in. Our league requires a weigh-in for every player before the game, and we are never quite sure when we will be interrupted for this. It takes about 10 minutes total and also works for a water break.
  • 00:47 - 00:52 – Team defense review. We quickly review alignment and any game specific checks.
  • 00:52 - 00:57 – Indy defense, PAT practice. By this time we expect to be on the field and finish our prep with light defensive work. Examples are angle tackling without taking player to the ground, defensive line pass rush, cornerback tip drill. If we have a kicker we also practice PATs with our snapper, holder, and kicker while this is happening.

This routine works for us. Most important, I think, is to have some routine. Make it predictable for the players so they can settle down and focus for the game. Don’t give any 10 minute speeches. Look for leaders on your team that can serve as a cheerleader or motivational speaker before the game.