The Oklahoma drill is a popular drill with many variations. The Oklahoma drill is often used for players to practice tackling.
The Oklahoma drill is a football hitting drill that lines up 4 players against each other, 2 offensive players, and 2 defensive players. The goal is for the defensive players to tackle the offensive player running the football.
In this article, we will show you what the Oklahoma drill is in football and its different variations.
Oklahoma Drill In Football
The term Oklahoma drill relates to a football tackling drill. This drill is common among football teams who just put pads on for the first time. Oklahoma drill is specific to high school football. Sometimes the offensive and defensive sides will be different from each other.
For example, the Oklahoma drill in football sometimes has an offensive line against a defensive line, 1 running backs vs. 1 linebacker, and much more combinations.
The players are lined up against each other and will get in their ready positions. Coaches can use different variations (in the number of players used), but the concept is still the same; tackle the running back.
When the coach blows the whistle or the quarterback says “go,” the drill begins.
Here the running back will either pick a side to run, or the coach will designate aside for the player to run. Once the player starts to move, the defensive lineman and the linebacker will attack the running back and tackle him. It’s the job of the offensive lineman to block the defensive lineman.
The defensive lineman will try to get by the offensive lineman and be the first to touch the running back.
The linebacker’s job is to get past both players and get to the running back before he gets past everyone else.
Schools have gotten creative with their different styles of Oklahoma Drills.
Why Do Teams Run The Oklahoma Drills?
The Oklahoma drill is used during practice to teach football tackling techniques such as: tackling on the move, penetration, hitting low, hitting high, hitting with your head up, etc.
The Oklahoma drill in football is to practice the correct technique for tackling; how to tackle properly so as not to injure yourself or others. There are a variety of drills that can be used for this purpose.
This drill should be monitored by the coaching staff as close as possible. Big collisions often happen in the Oklahoma drill, which gets teammates hyped up. However, the goal of the Oklahoma drill is to put players in live tackling situations without risking injury.
Coaches need to keep in mind that this drill teaches players how to give and absorb contact properly. Big hits, lousy technique, and poor tackling are not why the Oklahoma drill should be done. If the players start to develop bad habits in this drill, there’s a good chance that they will carry on to the field during the game.
Dangers Of The Oklahoma Drill
The Oklahoma drill is widely criticized because of its high injury rate and high rate of contact. If teams decide to do a 2v2 setup, there will be contact between the linebacker and running back 99% of the time.
This means the defensive player has a free shot at the running back, who needs to protect themselves when taking a hit.
Injuries will often occur if the player who is not used to giving or absorbing contact tries to go full speed in this drill.
We recommend doing this drill after all of the players feel comfortable tackling and absorbing contact. If a player is new to football, we recommend they don’t do this drill, as it could scare them away due to its high intensity and contact.
Oklahoma drill in football is very physical and can get out of control if not controlled correctly. This drill can often result in injuries. Players try to go all out during this drill and often lose their balance, resulting in tackles that are not controlled well or overpowered by one player who is faster or bigger than another player.
Is The Oklahoma Drill Illegal?
In some states, the Oklahoma drill is illegal to do. Players cannot run variations of this drill due to the high contact that comes from it. State legislations have ruled this drill to be too risky for players to take part in.
Coaches have found other ways to make drills more game-like and better suited for newer players. This doesn’t mean the concept of the Oklahoma drill has faded away.
Coaches have created ways to use Oklahoma drill concepts still but from space. This makes the game safer and reduces the injuries that a play may occur from the depth.
Tackling Drills In Place Of The Oklahoma Drill
Teams have created different names for a new style of Oklahoma drills, often using cones and spacing to distance players.
This type of Oklahoma drill is often called “Millenial Oklahoma.” This type of Oklahoma drill allows players to defeat blocks without having a free linebacker to tackle the running back.
It also gives obstacles for the running back to dodge. This creates a game scenario for all of the players involved. It also reduces the risk of injury because of all the players that are spaced out.
The Oklahoma drill is highly controversial, and many will be wary of it. The drill is meant to teach players how to tackle properly, but the injury rate can be quite high because of its high intensity and contact.
The Oklahoma drill is not recommended for newer players, as it can scare them away from playing due to the injuries that are likely to occur.
We recommend using drills similar to the Oklahoma drill but eliminates contact or minimizes contact between players if possible. This will allow players to develop their technique and not worry about getting injured as often.
Let’s keep learning! Our learning center is packed with information regarding technique, scheme, and more!
If you’re looking for more in-depth breakdowns & coaching resources, visit our coaching resource page here.