Strategies for Successful Post Touchdown Attempts

Football games often come down to critical moments, and one of the most pivotal can be the Post Touchdown Attempts. Whether you’re a coach, player, or an enthusiastic fan, understanding the strategies behind these attempts is crucial. In this article, we’ll delve into various approaches to ensure success after a touchdown, focusing on extra points and two-point conversions.

Understanding the Post Touchdown Attempts

After scoring a touchdown, teams have the opportunity to add extra points to their score through a post-touchdown attempt. They can either kick an extra point (worth one point) or attempt a two-point conversion (worth two points). Both options come with their own sets of risks and rewards.

Extra Point Kick

The extra point kick, also known as the PAT (Point After Touchdown), is the more traditional and safer option. The ball is placed on the opponent’s 15-yard line, and the team’s kicker attempts to send it through the uprights of the goalposts.

Two-Point Conversion

The two-point conversion is a more aggressive strategy. The ball is placed on the opponent’s 2-yard line, and the team attempts to score a touchdown again by running or passing the ball into the end zone.

Factors Influencing the Decision

Choosing between an extra point kick and a two-point conversion depends on several factors. Here are some key considerations:

Game Situation

The game’s current score, time remaining, and momentum can heavily influence the decision. If a team is trailing by two points, a two-point conversion may be the best option to tie the game. Conversely, a team with a comfortable lead might opt for the safer extra point kick.

Team Strengths and Weaknesses

Coaches must evaluate their team’s strengths and weaknesses. If the team has a reliable kicker, the extra point may be the safer choice. However, if the offense is particularly strong in short-yardage situations, a two-point conversion could be more appealing.

Opponent’s Defense

Understanding the opponent’s defensive capabilities is crucial. If the opposing team has a strong goal-line defense, attempting a two-point conversion might be riskier. Conversely, a weaker defense could be exploited with a well-executed play.

Strategies for Successful Extra Point Kicks

Consistent Kicking Mechanics

For kickers, consistency is key. A reliable kicker should have a well-practiced routine and consistent mechanics. This includes proper foot placement, follow-through, and mental focus.

Strong Special Teams Unit

A successful extra point kick relies on more than just the kicker. The entire special teams unit must execute their roles flawlessly. This includes accurate snapping, precise holding, and effective blocking.

Weather Conditions

Weather can significantly impact kicking success. Wind, rain, and snow can all affect the trajectory of the ball. Kickers and coaches should consider these factors and adjust accordingly.

Strategies for Successful Two-Point Conversions

Versatile Playbook

A well-rounded playbook with multiple two-point conversion options is essential. This includes both run and pass plays, allowing the team to adapt based on the defense’s alignment and tendencies.

Pre-Snap Reads

Quarterbacks must excel at reading the defense before the snap. Identifying potential blitzes, coverages, and mismatches can help determine the best play call.

Quick Decision-Making

Two-point conversions happen quickly, and there is little room for hesitation. Quarterbacks and skill players must make rapid decisions and execute plays with precision.

Effective Blocking

Just as with any play, effective blocking is crucial. Offensive linemen and tight ends must create running lanes or provide ample time for the quarterback to find an open receiver.

Real-World Examples

The New England Patriots’ “Philly Special”

During Super Bowl LII, the Philadelphia Eagles executed a trick play known as the “Philly Special” for a successful two-point conversion. The play involved a direct snap to a running back, who then handed off to a wide receiver, who threw a touchdown pass to the quarterback. This creative play caught the Patriots’ defense off guard and showcased the importance of innovation in two-point conversions.

The Denver Broncos’ Reliable Kicker

The Denver Broncos have long been known for their reliable kickers. In close games, the team often opts for the extra point kick, relying on their kicker’s consistency. This strategy has paid off in numerous high-pressure situations, highlighting the value of a dependable kicker.

Training and Preparation

Practice Makes Perfect

Both kickers and offensive units must dedicate significant practice time to Post Touchdown Attempts. Repetition builds muscle memory and confidence, reducing the likelihood of mistakes during games.

Film Study

Studying game film is invaluable for identifying tendencies and weaknesses in the opponent’s defense. Coaches and players can use this information to develop effective game plans for extra points and two-point conversions.

Mental Preparation

Mental toughness is essential for success in high-pressure situations. Kickers and offensive players should practice visualization techniques and develop routines to stay focused and calm during Post Touchdown Attempts.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Poor Snap and Hold

A botched snap or hold can ruin an extra point attempt. Special teams units must practice these fundamentals to ensure a smooth operation.

Predictable Play Calling

Defenses can easily stop predictable two-point conversion attempts. Coaches should mix up play calls and keep the defense guessing.

Lack of Awareness

Players must always be aware of the game situation and the clock. Miscommunication or confusion can lead to costly mistakes.

Conclusion

Post Touchdown Attempts are critical moments in football games that can significantly impact the outcome. By understanding the factors that influence the decision-making process and implementing effective strategies, teams can increase their chances of success. Whether opting for the safer extra point kick or the more aggressive two-point conversion, preparation, and execution are key.

By mastering these strategies, coaches and players can ensure that their Post Touchdown Attempts contribute to their overall success on the field.

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