Running Back Daylight Outside Drill


To work on the runningback’s ability to find the open gap (daylight) on sweep plays and hit that opening hard and confident.



  • Mark an offensive line with pylons or linestrip or at least the Tackle/Tight-End position on the playside.
  • Place 3 players on the defensive side (about 1 yard behind the LOS) to the designated playside: one about 2 yards outside the Tackle/Tight-End position, the other two outside about 3-4 yards apart.
  • Runningback lines up in his normal position
  • Coach signals to the “shields” how many should slide fast:
    • 0: all three will just slide slowly along the LOS towards the sideline leaving the area between them and the sideline open for the Runningback.
    • 1: only the most outside shield will “overpersue” along the LOS towards the sideline.
    • 2: only the innermost shield will slide slow.
    • 3: all three shields will slide fast leaving the area between them and the Tackle/Tight-End postion for the Runningback open.


  1. Runningback will run his normal sweep path with football (Variation: Use a Quarterback to hand off or pitch the football to add even more real live to the drill)
  2. when Runningback is about the Tackle/Tight-End position  the shield-holders start sliding according to the coaches signal.
  3. The runningback continues on his path until he recognizes the opening, then he cuts towards that opening and continues downfield about 4-6 yards.

Coaching Points

  • Runningback should always run hard and fullspeed.
  • Runningback shouldn’t slow down but cut fast toward the opening without loosing speed!
  • Hips and shoulders should always point point towards the sideline until the cut then upfield.


  • Ball(s)
  • 3 Shields
  • Pylons or
  • Linestrip