Hey guys, I appreciate the help...I'm coaching 8-11 year olds this upcoming season and while I have an offense picked out and studied, I'm still looking for a defensive scheme.
For whatever reason it's really hard to get good defensive information on the Internet, not that I totally trust some dude with a low-rent webpage which seems to be all I can dig up. My criteria are as follows:
SIMPLE to learn, to teach and to debug in the game. Preferably one assignment or focus item per player, with perhaps a simple wrinkle like a couple of blitzes or a line shift. I don't want us to bumfoozle ourselves.
NOT DEPENDENT ON A KEY TALENT like a big nose tackle, elephant, safety/LB hybrid or anything like that.
LOW-RISK: I'm less concerned with "shutting down" the opponent than I am with controlling the game and establishing a physical style of play. Big plays are really mentally devastating at this level so I'd like to play a safe scheme.
BROAD APPLICATION: Every now and then there's a team at this age group and region that tries to pass a lot, and if they have a kid who can catch they can be good, but most teams run two backs and at least one tight end and try to run to the outside.
I am one who believes that the best way to play defense is to really muscle the offensive players, especially on the line. The kids I'll be coaching won't have enough experience or athletic skill to do a lot of finesse or shifting so simplicity is key to keep them focused on their job.