First Time Fullback -- How Do I Get Better?

By Will


I am going into my junior year next fall and looking to play football at the varsity level in high school (or jv if im not good enough for varsity). It will be my first time playing football for my school and I would like to know if I would be good enough for fullback, as I am interested in that position. here are my stats:

ht: 5'8.5"
wt: 183 lbs
bench: 255lbs (265 with light spot)
squat: 360lbs x3
deadlift: 385lbs x2 (405 max to be acheived next week)
hang powerclean: 135 lbs

I have yet to measure my 40yd dash...but I think I'm a bit slow; my acceleration speed isn't so great but I'm working on it.

The school offers a free conditioning camp starting next month with tryouts being the last two weeks of august. I would like to focus on building the skills essential to playing the fullback position. I train with HIIT on the stationary bike for my cardio and was wondering whether I should keep that or replace it with running / sprints.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You

What Other Visitors Have Said

Always Drive Your Feet

Hi, I used to play fullback so I can give a few pointers. The 2 most important things are 1) to keep a low center of gravity. If you're running low its easier to square up on a backer if you keep your head up and shoulders squared so you can move laterally to make a block if needed.

Obviously, you're going to want to hit the line with a full head of steam and once you break past the initial wave of bodies you're going to see a linebacker/db and be very tempted to go for the pancake, but you have to remember that it's a lot easier for a linebacker to avoid a blocker than it is for a ball-carrier to avoid a linebacker (because you can't tackle a's holding) so when you make contact, the idea is to square up, shoot your hands into the side flaps of the defenders shoulder pads and 2) just keep driving your feet!

Short choppy steps are ideal but if you catch the defender off balance its ok to just get underneath and up-end him. a heavy pancake will look cool on a highlight tape but it's not exactly tantalizing when recruiters are looking for a solid blocking fullback.

Effort is always the #1 thing on a recruiters checklist - if you get a good lock onto a defender and the ball-carrier passes you, the instinctive thing would be to disengage and continue upfield to find another target, but a scout would love to see you just stick to your initial block and continue to work your man up the field until the whistle blows and it would never hurt to end the block with a little body bump to try to get him on the ground once the play is over.

I never touched the ball when I played but I was always told to just take it and run if I ever did. After you get the ball in your hands just lower your pad shelf and set a b-line for the end zone.


by: Eric Caldwell, Jun 21, 2011

Protect the Ball

Woops pressed send too early.

Especially after contact - if someone hits you in the back of the knees when you're being pushed backwards or not moving, you can kiss your ACL goodbye.

As a fullback, you should emphasize ball-security. Unless you end up in the open field with no one around you for 20 yards keep the ball wedged between your forearms and tucked tight to your chest.

by: Eric Caldwell, Jun 21, 2011

Changing it up a Bit....

Hello Everyone,

Thank you for all of your input. I like the fullback position, but I would like to open it up a bit more...if not for fullback, what other position could I play? I like to run the ball,but im not very fast..I like to tackle as maybe a linebacker?

Football tryouts are August 22, and I wont be able to attend conditioning before that because im studying at berklee for 5 weeks starting in july. My stats are about the same; squat has gone up from 360X3 to 375x2..deep squats and deadlift attempt at 405 failed, but I have 390 or 395 in me and bench is the same; gonna switch it upto incline this week. I'm 5'8 and 183 lbs, and im working on my speed.

Stamina/endurance could use a bit of work I a good size for fullback, linebacker, defensive end ot tightend? I dont think im big enough to be a line man, and im not into throwing or catching the not QB or WR... I would like to do varsity, though I havent really played legit (like on the team) before.

I have been doing HIIT on the bike for my cardio; should I do uphill sprints? there is a hill right across the street from me...also, can anyone tell me what tryouts would be like?

I wanna be as prepared as possible to conquer what they throw at being fit is obviously #1...any input on the matter would be greatly appreciated. also, any tips on convincing stubborn moms to let me play? LOL. Once again ..thank you.

by: Will, Jun 29, 2011

Hey Guys...Update

So I did a couple of sprints tonight...nothing really exact...I ran from the end of my neighbors fence, to the fire hydrant which is about 55 yards( measured using my feet which are about 12 inches long)..I ran the distance in about 8.33 seconds..obviously not an exact 40yd dash...but an ok assesment of my speed...what do you guys think about that? and would that be good?

by: Will, Jun 30, 2011

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