Free Defensive Line Training Workouts

Defensive Lineman Drills and Techniques

Written By: Gridiron Elite Training

Free Defensive Line Training Workouts

Defensive Lineman Drills and Techniques

Written By: Gridiron Elite Training

Defensive Lineman Drills & Techniques: Boost Your Skills

Being a successful defensive lineman requires a mix of raw power, agility, and technique. Whether you’re a seasoned player or just starting out, honing your skills through effective drills and techniques is essential. In this post, we’ll explore defensive lineman drills and techniques that will elevate your game and make you an invaluable asset to your team. Let’s get started!

Complete DL Drills

The Importance of Defensive Lineman Drills and Techniques

Defensive linemen face a variety of challenges during a game. They must be able to quickly read the offense, react to changes in the play, and maintain their position on the line of scrimmage. To excel in this role, it’s crucial to have a solid foundation in defensive lineman techniques and to practice regularly with specific drills.

By mastering these drills and techniques, defensive linemen can:

  1. Improve their agility, allowing them to quickly change direction and keep up with faster offensive players.
  2. Develop greater strength, enabling them to effectively shed blocks and overpower their opponents.
  3. Enhance their reaction time, giving them the ability to quickly recognize and respond to offensive plays.
  4. Boost their overall performance, making them more valuable assets to their team.

The Importance of Defensive Lineman Drills and Techniques

There are several key techniques that every defensive lineman should master:


A proper stance is the foundation of a successful defensive lineman. Players should start with a balanced, slightly crouched position, with their feet shoulder-width apart and their weight distributed evenly between both feet. This position allows for quick movements and powerful engagements with the offensive line.

Hand Placement

Proper hand placement is crucial for controlling an offensive lineman. Defensive linemen should aim to place their hands on the inside of the opponent’s shoulders, with their thumbs up and elbows in. This grip provides maximum leverage and control.

Shedding Blocks

Defensive linemen must be able to shed blocks quickly to maintain their position on the line of scrimmage. They can accomplish this by using a combination of hand placement, footwork, and body positioning to create separation from the offensive player.

Pass Rush Moves

Developing a repertoire of pass rush moves is essential for any defensive lineman. Common moves include the bull rush, swim move, rip move, and spin move. Practicing these moves regularly will make them more effective during games.

Essential Defensive Lineman Drills

The following drills are designed to help defensive linemen hone their skills and master essential techniques:

Get-Off Drills

These drills focus on improving a lineman’s reaction time and first step off the line of scrimmage. Players should start in a three-point stance and explode forward upon hearing the snap count or seeing the ball move. They can also practice with a partner, who will simulate the snap count and movement.

Hand Combat Drills

Hand combat drills help defensive linemen improve their hand placement, hand-eye coordination, and overall hand fighting skills. Players can work with a partner or use a blocking sled to practice engaging and disengaging from blocks.

Agility Drills

Agility drills, such as the cone drill or ladder drill, are essential for improving a defensive lineman’s quickness, footwork, and change-of-direction skills. These drills should be performed regularly to build and maintain agility.

Pass Rush Drills

Pass rush drills are designed to help defensive linemen develop their pass rush moves and improve their ability to get to the quarterback. Players can practice these drills with a partner, using a blocking sled or a one-on-one pass rush drill.

5 Defensive Line Technique Drills

defensive lineman football drills

Wrist Control And Replace

Rip, Reduce, And Replace

DL vs. OL Pass Rush Wrist Swim And Replace

Snap Wrist Down Dip And Rip

DL vs. OL Push Pull

Access More Gridiron Defensive Lineman Technique Drills

Here are five defensive line technique drills to get more sacks and tackles.

Suppose you’re a defensive lineman looking to take your football skills to the next level. In that case, you can read some of our latest posts on the “Defensive Line Drills – Improve Your Get Off The Line” and “Plyometric Exercises For Speed And Explosiveness In Football.”

Also, you can access our sports performance training programs, defensive lineman training program, and the Gridiron Recruiting Center inside “The Gridiron Academy” to help you with your football recruiting.

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Gridiron Elite Training

Gridiron Elite Training was started to help educate and provide football players with a community to receive proper training and guidance.

We created “The Gridiron Elite Academy” which is an online football performance network that provides football players of all levels with sports performance workout programs, football position-specific drills, mindset coaching, mental toughness training, recruiting guidance and help, and nutrition programs.

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