As a wide receiver, one of the most important things you can do is get a good release from the line of scrimmage. Being stymied by a defender can throw you off your route and get you out of sync with your quarterback. But getting a good jump at the start of each play can be the first step in successfully making a catch.
To become more efficient off the snap, professional wide receiver Nelson Agholor recommends a drill designed to work both lateral and linear acceleration.
ACCENTUATE YOUR ACCELERATION
To get started, you’ll need five plastic cones that can be set up in two vertical columns. The cones will be placed on alternating sides, each one set up vertically a yard apart.
Lining up at the first cone, you want to practice cutting back and forth from one side to the next, which can help work on your lateral and linear movements.
It’s not just about where you’re moving, but how you’re moving, too. You always want to be mindful of your footwork.
“The most important thing you do in this drill is you’re going to sink, but also apply force from the insteps,” Agholor says.
Agholor adds that receivers cutting on the outside of their cleats can tend to slip and fall. Instead, try cutting from the interior of your foot for better traction through the moves.
“You generate force from the inside because you have more control and more parts of your cleats in the ground,” he says.
Looking to become a complete receiver? You’ll likely want to focus on sharpening your route-running skills. Learn more with these tips from Agholor on how to run a good curl route.