QB Essentials, Part 3: Improve Mechanics for Better Arm Strength and Accuracy

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Arm strength for quarterbacks is generated from the lower body and core. "That's the most important aspect QBs need to understand," says quarterbacks coach Anton Clarkson. "Young QBs think arm strength is all about quick arm action. Instead, it's the ability to transfer your bodyweight from back to front in the same way you would swing a golf club or a baseball bat."

However, developing a big arm is pointless unless you can locate and hit your receivers. For a strong-armed QB like Josh Freeman of the Tampa Bay Bucs, precise footwork and flawless throwing mechanics are what allow him to fit the ball into tight spaces.

In 2010, Freeman, who trains with Clarkson in the off-season, threw for 25 touchdowns and just six interceptions.

Power up your arm and perfect your accuracy with Clarkson's throwing fundamentals, as follows:

  • Transfer bodyweight from back foot to front. "Land on the ball of your back foot when you get to the top of your drop, and push off your back foot to shift your weight to your front foot."
  • Rotate hips while dragging back foot around upon release. "Your back foot should be turned downfield toward your target."
  • Keep front shoulder down.
  • Drive throwing hand toward pocket of opposite leg after release. "Imagine that your thumb is holstering into your opposite side pocket."
  • Turn thumb down upon release. "Turn your thumb downward as if you're flicking something off your index finger."
  • Keep head aligned with body when throwing.

The "QB Essentials":

  1. Develop Rhythm and Timing With the Three-Step Drop
  2. Properly Gripping the Football

Anton Clarkson is an elite quarterbacks coach and head instructor for the QB Weekly. His roster of  professional clients includes Tampa Bay Bucs signal-caller Josh Freeman and Jake Locker, the eighth overall selection (by the Tennessee Titans) in the 2011 NFL Draft. Learn more about Clarkson and the many services offered by the QB Weekly.

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