To be a dominant wide receiver, you must possess the skills required to regularly outrun your defender and make impossible catches. To develop this fundamental skill set, you must hone your hand-eye coordination and increase your breakaway speed off the line of scrimmage.
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Improve your wide receiver skills by performing the following drills:
Over-The-Shoulder Catches With One Hand
Place two cones five yards apart. Have a coach stand to the right or left of cone one, ready to throw the ball. At cone one, stand in ready position in front of your coach. On the coach’s signal, sprint toward cone two and catch the ball over your shoulder with your opposite hand. For example, if the throw comes from the right, catch the ball with your left hand.
To develop hand-eye coordination, perform the drill with a tennis ball, racquetball or golf ball, as a smaller ball requires greater focus.
Four-Corner Quick Reaction Catches
This is an excellent team drill that develops quick hand-eye reaction. Like the preceding drill, this too should be performed with a smaller ball.
Place four cones five yards apart in a square. Each holding a ball, a different teammate stands at each cone. Start on the outside of cone one. On coach’s signal, sprint to cone two and catch the ball tossed by the teammate waiting for you at cone two. Drop the ball and sprint around cone two to cone three. Catch ball and continue drill around each cone, ending at cone one.
The average football play is four to seven yards in length. A receiver’s breakaway speed acceleration occurs on average in the first ten yards. Weighted Sprints develop breakaway speed by increasing the amount of power you put into the ground.
The best tools for Weighted Sprints are sleds, resistance bands, the Speed Sac and parachutes. Sprint for 40 yards with resistance, then release the resistance and sprint at max speed for an additional 40 yards. Recover for two minutes before performing your next rep. Repeat for a total of 10 sprints.