Becoming a better running back requires workouts designed to develop speed, vision, balance and agility. One I highly recommend for developing lateral movement and cutting speed—essential for eluding tacklers—is called the Three-Step Cut drill. Another great thing about this drill is that it works on ball handling skills, which are equally important for running backs. Perform it every day as part of your normal speed workout. (Train like the best with STACK Performance Series 53: Trent Richardson's Explosive Running Training.)
Three-Step Cut Drill
- Place the ball high and tight in your strong arm, and keep it there throughout the drill
- Bend sightly forward in good athletic position
- Place your feet hip-width apart, slightly bend your knees and point your toes straight ahead
- From the starting position, step forward with your right foot and turn your shoulders at a slight angle to the right.
- With your body low and your shoulders squared, step forward with your left foot. Your right leg now becomes the one you are going to cut on.
- Step forward with your right foot, and step with your left foot in the opposite direction, turn your shoulders
- Step with your right foot and back to your left foot. Your left leg now becomes the leg you are going to cut on.
- After you have stepped with your left foot, then step with your right foot in the opposite direction.
- Follow the same progression to repeat the drill.
Start by walking through the drill at a slow pace. Once you're confident with the movement, perform at full speed. I recommend starting for 10 yards and increasing the distance to 15, 20 and finally 25 yards.