Special Teams Tips: Long Snapping 101

Learn how to quickly and accurately snap the ball to the punter, allowing ample time for them to kick the football.

It’s essential for your team to have a good snapper, and executing a successful long snap all starts with the grip.

To ace your grip, start by holding the football like you’re going to throw it. Next, bend your wrist to cup the ball, so that your palm is facing up. Use your other hand as a guide to snap the ball in the right direction. The middle finger of your guide hand should be placed on the middle seam on the top half of the football. This will help to keep the nose of the ball down on a snap.

At game time, when the official puts the football on the ground, it cannot be lifted until the ball is snapped. Position your feet in a comfortable, athletic position and get into your stance. Your toes should be facing toward the line of scrimmage, as you’re in a crouch position with your hips sunk.

Grip the football ready for the snap, cupping it with your palm up and your guide hand on top with your middle finger on the seam. When you snap the football, bring your elbows in so they hit your inner thighs. This creates a long arm action, giving you a powerful snap on a line back to your punter.

Deep snapping is essential for a successful kicking game and if you practice proper form and grip, you’ll be ready to succeed come game time.