Broncos to use passing league wisely
By Kyle Salomon,
Last week marked the first two days of passing league for high school football teams across Oklahoma as numerous teams from the Oklahoma City area invaded Edmond Santa Fe.
Passing league will run two times per week throughout the month of July leading up to the start of fall practice, which begins in early August. Due to the shortened week of July 4, there was no passing league this week, but it will kick back up next Tuesday and Thursday.
Passing league is football without offensive or defensive linemen. Offenses will only run passing plays against opposing defensive backs and linebackers. Each team is allowed up to seven players on the field at once.
Mustang junior quarterback Chandler Garrett said passing league is another opportunity to get better before fall practice starts in August.
“It’s a great way to keep the passing game crisp,” he said. “It helps keep the timing good between me and the receivers, and we can do it while going against other teams’ DB’s and linebackers. We know it’s a little unrealistic because defenses aren’t going to drop seven into coverage that often when you have the threat of running the ball, but it’s still good for us.”
Garrett said a lot of people don’t think passing league is that great because teams play vanilla defense and it’s not a realistic example of the timing when you have linemen on the field.
“I think it does a lot for us,” he said. “It does a lot more than people think it does. Yeah, there are things that are a lot different. For instance, as a quarterback you don’t have defensive linemen or linebackers rushing you, so you have that internal clock in your head that tells you when it’s time to get rid of the ball. You get out of it what you put into it.”
On the defensive side of the ball, passing league can be beneficial in helping the secondary and linebackers on communication and different coverages they want to work on before fall camp.
Bronco senior safety Zach Davis said passing league allows them to develop chemistry as a group.
“Passing league is for our defense to help us with communication in the back end with one another and help us get our eyes right on what we are supposed to look for,” he said. “Yes, we will get burnt or drop some passes or make bad throws, but that’s OK because we are out there to get better in general.”
Davis said he would like to see a lot of improvement made as passing league goes along, so they are ready for fall camp in August.
“We have a lot of play-makers on both sides of the ball this year, so it is important that we use this time on the field we have to get better and smarter as a group,” he said. “It’s also another way for our young guys to really develop and get some experience against other teams. I would like to see it make us a better team overall.”