Sunday February 3rd I met up with Bronson Bruneau a junior long snapper from Lakeville MN for our very first long snapping lesson. Bronson is 6'5" 200lbs, which is a great frame for a snapper! I wish I had those genetics!
Like any first lesson I like to warm the student up and then watch them snap for a little while I film and critique to see what we need to be working on. As Bronson started snapping at 12 yards I noticed that he puts good velocity on the ball already with very raw form.
I was excited to see this because if you can snap the ball fast with bad form, that means you'll be able to snap it even faster when you get it corrected! Bronson came in to our long snapping lesson having been to two camps and averaging a .75 snap time which is very good.
With his long levers he has the potential to bring that time down quite a bit with some tweaks to what he already does. Some of the things I was able to see during this first portion of the lesson were that Bronson tends to stop his hands immediately after he releases the ball instead of following through right away. He also does not use his lower body to its full potential, only using a little hop and leaving his legs bent throughout the snap. This is causing him to short himself on a ton of speed!
You can see Bronson stopping his hands and popping up right away during our pre-lesson snapping
Here is a side view where you can see Bronson's leg drive. He does not extend his legs which really kills the speed on his ball along with stopping his hands.
The next portion of the long snapping lesson was focused on addressing some of the issues that I had picked up on earlier. The first thing we addressed was the fact that he stops his hands which means he isn't following through.
We started with forehead snaps which help with the follow through and hand position. Bronson was not hitting the correct final hand position so we worked this for a little while, making small corrections as we went along.
After working the forehead snap progression I flipped him upside down for straight leg snaps which incorporate all of the hand work that we were just focusing on but puts it in a more applicable setting. In the straight leg stance you are only working on the arm motion and the final hand position.
We worked this for a little while and Bronson started picking up on the hand position, his spiral started coming out tighter as well. During the straight leg drill I noticed that Bronson had a choppy arm motion so the next long snapping drill we focused on was the straight leg band snaps.
During this drill we slow down the arm motion and work on hitting the right positions. After we slow it down for a while I have the student do it on their own and smooth it out so that they can put it all together.
Working straight leg arm drills to smooth out his motion. This is Bronson hitting position 2 with his eyes through toward his target.
Bronson during a full snap hitting position 1.
Hitting position 2. Eyes through, forearms parallel to the ground.
This is what his current position 3 looks like.
The lines on this picture show that his knees need to be locked, heels flat, and arms intersecting the legs to make a +
After working the arms we turned our focus to the lower body. Bronson had a general idea of what he was suppose to be doing but was not able to execute it.
He had attended two different camps that teach two different styles of lower body snap which is confusing because it looked like he was trying to incorporate both styles... Anyway we started out with Bronson standing on the bench with the front half of his foot hanging off for weight distribution purposes and worked slow motion choppy leg drive in order to feel the correct positions.
After doing this a while we eventually moved on to slow and smooth. We then came down onto the turf again where we sped things up and worked on the leg drive. He had the main idea down but once again executing was another story.
It is always difficult for new guys to get leg drive down right away as its a complex movement. I incorporated the football slap drill in order for Bronson to feel and hear if he was completely locking out his knees or not. He eventually started picking up on it and with a little tweak to his pre-snap weight distribution his leg drive increased tremendously.
Bronson making some progress towards the end of the lesson. Leg drive is a little better, he is not pulling his hands and is following through nicely!
Bronson did a great job today! He is a quick learner and has the tools to be one of the top long snappers in the country! I look forward to helping him play at one of the top schools in the nation.
If you would like to work on your long snapping contact Special Teams University to schedule your lesson today!
- Kyle Stelter