#PassRush Psychology: Building a high-pressure #PassRush from scratch.

When you can’t buy #PassRushers, you have to build them starting from the depths of Minus-Zero.

Developing #PassRushers from scratch is not the same as developing #PassRushers who someone else built for you. When your defensive line has never played football before, never lifted before, you have to teach like you’ve never taught before. Coordinating a defense in the depths of Football Poverty starts with building the simplest #PassRush humanly possible, as fast as humanly possible – dual meaning. Speed of learning, speed of #PassRush. Without a high-pressure #PassRush, your defense will get gutted. Your defense will be a defense in word only. It will be defenseless. Xs & Os will not save a weak, low-pressure #PassRush that can’t play full-speed for 60 minutes. The easiest way to get embarrassed by Post-Modern Offenses is to teach & train a walk-through defense – a defense that practices walk-throughs and then get run through without putting up a fight.

The #1 job of a #DefensiveCoordinator is to save your defense from getting killed – dual meaning:

  1. From getting cut up in the morgue or surgery room.
  2. From getting cut up on the scoreboard that leaves permanent psychological scars.

The first step in preventing both killings is a relentless, maniacal pass rush by the defensive line. Nothing else on defense will work without 5th Degree intense high-pressure #PassRush. No coverage, no scheme, no #GamePlan, no #goals will work out if your Defensive Line is nothing more than an imaginary line for the offense to trample. Our solution to preventing both killings has been #MuscleBall – workout differently to make the #PassRush workout differently. 

Here’s part of the SWAT Defense System, ideology, philosophy that constitutes #MuscleBall, a way of life, not just a way to play defense. 

#MuscleBall is a #LifeStyle – dual meaning. How to live in order to keep on living when the enemy wants to kill you. #MuscleBall constitutes #FieldSurvival Mentality & Work intended to save lives, to #KeepAlive students and athletes in #Life&Death sports and jobs that can kill you in mind-body-soul.

#MuscleBall starts at the top, inside the mind with #PassRush Psychology. It’s impossible to achieve the physical element of 5th Degree #PassRush without absorbing #PassRush Psychology into your blood.

Here is our Basic Psychology that has governed our #MuscleBall and #PassRush for 40 years at a level of Football Poverty that has to be experienced to be believed:

  1. Build your Brand.  High-Pressure #PassRush must be our defensive signature – our brand, our DNA, our fingerprint. Not coverage, not whether we use a 4-3 or 3-4 or any other archaic formation dusted off form football museums.  A High-Pressure #PassRush must be our ethos for the rest of the defense to work out. The main reason is to influence and control the opposing #OffensiveCoordinator’s thinking, planning, decision-making, play-calling. Make the opposing OC and QB predictable through remote control.
  2. Build up pressure off-the-field. The way to make the opposing offense predictable through remote control is to build up pressure off-the-field as the first step to applying #GameDay pressure. That’s accomplished by putting the threat of a high-pressure DL #PassRush inside the opponent’s minds. A high-pressure #PassRush must be our #1 identifying feature in our minds and every opponent’s mind. Our team must believe that our DL pressure is the centre focus of our defense. The opponent then has to conclude the same. The first conclusion our opponent must communicate to their offense in their Offensive Scouting Report is that our #PassRush is their offense’s #1 priority, the central focus of their #GamePlan, of their play-calling, of their practice & prep. This is the start of applying 5th Degree #Pressure on #GameDay, by building up pressure during their prep-time. Pressure is a built along a continuum, a chain of events that must start off-the-field before #GameDay.  Build pressure in their minds off-the-field that builds pressure-momentum that manifests on-the-field.
  3. Press Play by Remote Control.  Never wait for #GameDay to build pressure in order to control the opponent. Control remotely by pressing hard in their minds with a level of mental pressure that will control their practice reps, their play-calling, and every decision made by the opposing OC & QB. Applying 5th Degree #Pressure starts long before #GameDay. Its impossible to apply 5th Degree #Pressure if you wait for #GameDay. 5th Degree #Pressure has to be built up in the off-season in two places – your defense’s minds and the opponent’s minds. Your belief and their belief start applying 5th Degree #Pressure way before #GameDay. When 5th Degree #Pressure is applied in the opponent’s mind before #GameDay, you control their practice reps, their #GamePlan, their play-calling. You control the opposing offense. The more 5th Degree #Pressure you apply off-the-field, the more sustained 5th Degree #Pressure you apply on the field.
  4. Cause attention deficit. Force Focus on Force. That means force the QB and every opposing ball-carrier to focus on force that the DL will generate. Two reasons: (i) The anticipation of pain is as disruptive as the real thing. Doesn’t matter how rich you opponent is – if they focus on force, they will focus on nothing else. (ii) They will neglect all other elements of their offense and our defense.
  5. Turn their O-line into a blocking sled. Contact with the ball-carrier is our defensive objective on every play. Even though contact with blockers is not the defensive priority, it is essential to weaken blockers in mind-body-soul. The more early contact with blockers, the more they weaken and the faster they lose their #WillToWork. Turning their O-line into a blocking sled guarantees a win. 100% guarantee. 
  6. 4 levels of pressure. We don’t define the DL by conventional terms. We define DL as any player form any of our 4 Levels who aligns on Level 1 of the defense, regardless of their position. That’s why we have re-named our defensive players to remove conventional labels. We don’t bind our defenders by labelling them as linebackers, DBs, safeties, corners. Never let conventional position-names bind defenders with myopic thinking about job-description limited to what LBs do and what DBs do. Post-Modern Offenses will chew your defense up if you play conventional defense from the 1950’s. 
  7. High-pressure #PassRush is a sprint through through traffic. #PassRushing is not quantum physics. Complicating a #PassRush is one of the top 51 definitions of insanity. #PassRushing is a sprint. Its a sprint through traffic. The objective is simple – drive hard through traffic.
  8. Marathon sprints.  The DL will win every single game if the DL runs 50-plus full-out sprints every game. If the DL runs full sprints on every play, they win every game – guaranteed. Slowing down on any play increases the risk of losing and losing big.
  9. Win the work, win the fight. No Offensive Line anywhere is trained to full-out fight for 50-plus plays. They are trained below full-speed. O-Lines never practice 50-plus plays per practice full-out. The operative word is full-out. O-lines are restricted by their coaches resulting in Diminished Work Capacity. No O-line is forced to work to 100% work capacity for an entire practice. Win the Work Capacity War and your defense wins the fight and wins every play, wins every game. To prove this point, study your film when your team gets slaughtered. Watch carefully the Work Capacity Ratio between your DL and their OL. All wins, all losses at every level of football boils down to who wins the Work Capacity Ratio between  DL and OL.
  10. Speed of pass rush on #LastPlay cannot be slower than on #FirstPlay. If your DL hasn’t got the balls to sprint as fast on the last play as on the first play, they will never get to the ball.
  11. Swim+ sink. Swimming is prohibited. Swimming is dangerous and ineffective. Swimming is unnatural. Swimming will sink your DL, your #PassRush, and your defense.
  12. Bench press +squat. Combined Squat + Bench Press forms our only pass rush technique. Simultaneous bench press & squat is our only pass rush technique because it works on every play. Flawlessly executed, it can’t be beat. High-pressure #PassRush is built in the weight room with High-Speed SuperSet Lifting. Build a maniac pass rush by lifting in a rush.
  13. Seam #PassRush. The way through traffic is Sprinting a Seam. We teach only 2 ways to do it. It takes only 30 minutes to teach it. 
  14. Start a fight on their sideline – not with your players. Start a fight between their players and their coaches because of frustration. Nothing creates internal dissension on their team more than the pain of getting pummelled on every single play by a maniacal, full-out #PassRush. The moment the opponent fights on their sideline, you win – guaranteed. Here’s the proof – do research by studying film of sideline dissension on your team or their team. Record the scoreboard outcome. Guaranteed you will find a direct correlation between sideline fighting and losing.
  15. Never play Hide & Secrets. Never hide intent to pressure nothing. No secrets. Never disguise pressure. Showing Pressure-Intent creates #MentalPressure in the opponent’s head before the snap that shifts their focus from the play they called to worst-case scenarios that become self-fulfilling prophecies. What you focus on grows.

Its never been tougher to be a #DefensiveCoordinator than today. Now that offences have figured out that they can use limitless formations and how to achieve risk-free passing, you run the risk of getting your defense run down, run over, and suffer run-up scores. There’s more to being a #DefensiveCoordinator that getting it embroidered on your golf shirt. You need more training that watching football on TV, joining a Fantasy League, and winning video game championships. 

#KeepLearning. The #KeepLearning more and more and more.

New #podcast compliments of X Fitness at:

#MUCHLOVE #Soulofalifter

Blessings and all good things


Gino Arcaro

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