Offensive coordinator

An offensive coordinator is a member of the coaching staff of an American football or Canadian football team who is in charge of the team's offense. Generally, along with the defensive coordinator, he represents the second level of command structure after the head coach.

The offensive coordinator is in charge of the team's offensive game plan, and typically calls offensive plays during the game, although some offensive-minded head coaches also handle play-calling.[1] Several position coaches work under the offensive coordinator (position groupings can include quarterbacks, wide receivers, offensive line, running backs, and tight ends).

Unlike most position coaches in football, who are usually on the sidelines during games, offensive coordinators have the option of operating from the press box instead of being on the sideline. There are advantages and disadvantages to both locations.

Since 2009, nearly 40% of head coaches hired in the NFL had been serving as offensive coordinators.[2]


How to Become Offensive Coordinator

Essentials Information

If you want to become a high school, college, or NFL can offensive coordinator, here are some essential steps to take you down that path. Having a passion for the sport and training athletes will be very important if this is a targeted career path. Have knowledge of the game, it's important to develop your skills of the game and get up-to-date information [3] Volunteering at a local high school or team can help get the experience and knowledge needed to more up the ladder. Be open to helping at any position and than establish your goals with the coaches and start specializing your skills with the offensive players. Establishing time with a team is very important as well. It may take a few seasons before getting promoted into any coaching position in any level. Even to move up into an NFL coaching position, you'll realistically have to start from high school and college before obtaining a coaching position in the NFL. Education requirements will be required depending on what level and what high school you'll be going towards. Each school has their own requirements but most will at least require a high school diploma and some a Bachelors in Science. Research what schools require what level of education. Joining professional organizations like American Football Coaches Association(AFCA) will be beneficial for gaining professional knowledge and networking.

How to Become a High School Offensive Coordinator

If you're looking to stay in the high school level, be open into becoming a teacher or a school administrator. You'll have better security staying with the school and most high school will want coaches that can also be utilized in different positions in the school. Mentioning this, have a high school diploma will be a necessity for most schools [3] This is also why volunteering is important. After volunteering with a school, you can see what positions are available within the school and what coaches are needed. Since your goal is offensive coordinator, you'll be searching for opening for coaching positions related to offensive positions. Pursuing coaching-related certifications will be very beneficial[3] It will increase your knowledge and be a highlight on your resume. Taking these instructions will help assist you into getting the offensive coaching position with a high school team. Next step is to stay a few seasons in an offensive coaching position, learn what each offensive coach handles, and after a few seasons you'll apply for the Offensive Coordinator position.

How to become a College Offensive Coordinator

After following the procedures above, you will have a good start moving your way into the collegiate level.[3] Prior coaching experience is required and it is better if you lead some successful teams; exhibiting you are able to coach players to wins. Establishing yourself for a college offensive coordinator position will require experience coaching the offensive players at the collegiate level. Getting hired as an offensive coordinators directly from coaching high school will not be realistic. Find a college that needs offensive coaches and start moving up that way. Assisting a few seasons as an offensive coach, successfully, will help lead your way into any offensive coordinating positions.

NFL Offensive Coordinator

Now leading into the NFL Offensive Coordinator. This requires years of coaching experience at collegiate and professional level. Majority of these years will have to be successful to be highly considered for the position. Starting out in the NFL coaching, you'll start coaching/assisting the offensive teams and move up through the hierarchy. In some instances highly successful collegiate head coaches can smoothly transition to an NFL head coach like Matt Rhule.[4] Who was a high achieving head coach for Baylor and Temple University and become head coach of the Carolina Panthers.[4][5] Be ready to make professional coaching your main priority too. According to the Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, him and other NFL coaches spend 168 hours a week [6] Yes he is the head coach but offensive and defensive coordinators will put in similar hours as the head coach. It's normal to switch between NFL teams and positions. Recently, the ex-head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, Jason Garret, was let go and quickly become the offensive coordinator of the New York Giants.[7]

Common Offensive Coordinator's Strategies

Every Offensive Coordinator has their own coaching philosophies for their offense, however many of them stem from similar and basic ideas. Coaches are always learning and developing new techniques. A basic rule that offensive coordinators are using is minimizing mistakes. The best way for that is limiting turnovers and penalties through sound practices and preparation (Hutchison, 2008). Another common ideology for offensive coordinators is to dominate the defense. A strong offense will break the other team's defense physically and mentally [8] Next is to make sure the defense never crowds the line of scrimmage [8] It brings the offense to a total disadvantage with running plays and pursuing the field. Another common style is the Air Coryell system. This initiates many deep routes from the outside receivers, timing routes, and having the quarterback throw to "a spot," on the field.[9] Following that is the Spread offense which spreads the defense out.[9] The West Coast Offense will , "Focuses mainly on zone blocking runs and quick timing passes" (Marchant, 2019). While stretching the other teams defense horizontally, the offense will utilize short passes and the run game. The Erhardt-Perkins Offense is a good example of a combination of techniques. It's important to remember to adapt new strategies and modify them so they fit your philosophy. Learning will be a continues contribution you [the offensive coordinator] will have to take to improve your team. The Erhardt-Perkins Offense takes out the lengthy play-calls in the previous plays mentioned, Air Coryell and West Coast Offense, and uses one-or-two word names as a given concept for passing plays.[9] Next common system is the Air Raid Offense which includes two wideouts and two slot receivers to attack one side of the field, leaving one receiver on the opposite side of the field.[9]

See also


  1. ^ "Coaching Staff in American Football" . dummies a Wiley Brand. Retrieved 12 April 2020.
  2. ^ Baker, Kendall. "The failure of the NFL's Rooney Rule" . AXIOS. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d "How to Become a Football Coach: Education and Career Roadmap" . Retrieved 10 April 2020.
  4. ^ a b "Matt Rhule" . Carolina Panthers. Retrieved 18 April 2020.
  5. ^ Shook, Nick. "Panthers hire Baylor's Matt Rhule as head coach" . NFL. Retrieved 18 April 2020.
  6. ^ Van Valkenburg, Kevin. "A week in the life of a coach" . ESPN. Retrieved 7 April 2020.
  7. ^ Baca, Michael. "Jason Garrett agrees to become New York Giants OC" . NFL. Retrieved 18 April 2020.
  8. ^ a b Hutchinson. "10 Golden Rules of Offensive Football" . Active. Retrieved 11 April 2020.
  9. ^ a b c d "The Main 5 Offensive Systems in the NFL" . Hyde & Zeke Champion. Retrieved 11 April 2020.

Categories: American football occupations | Coaches of American football

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