ric Washington is one of the best d-line coaches I've ever been coached by. When I was on the Panthers, his ability to make the complex simple was uncanny.

And thankfully I stumbled upon a video of one of his famous individual periods during 2019 Panther's training camp. So for this week's D-Line Examples I'll be breaking down each drill he uses for this period.

Drill plan

Within 20 minutes Coach Washington uses a mix of pass rush & block destruction drills to make sure his D-Line can hone the essential skills needed within the Panther defense. You can check out each of the drills Coach Washington uses to hone his D-Line's skills below...

Rush lanes get off

  • Duration: 2 minute
  • Repetitions: 2 reps each side

Seeing as get off is the first fundamental for Coach Washington's D-Line, he always begins his individual honing this skill, but remember you can hone multiple skills at the same time. So, Coach Washington also practices running a TEX stunt along with get off to make sure his D-Line keeps balanced rush lanes.

Redirect drill

  • Duration: 1 minute
  • Repetitions: 1 rep each side

D-Line is all about stimulus response. The faster you react to a stimulus the closer you'll be to making plays. That's why Coach Washington utilizes even the smallest amount of time to get his D-Line exploding out of their stance and reacting to a stimulus.

Lock, peek & shed

  • Duration: 2 minutes
  • Repetitions: 1 rep each side

In the Panther defense it's critical that the D-Line is able to get vertical penetration and get off blocks. That's why they use the shed drill to teach locking (extend arms), peeking (look around the blocker) and shedding (violently escape). And remember incorporate tackling into as many drills as possible.

Dummy moves

  • Duration: 4 minutes
  • Repetitions: 1 rep each side per each move

Coach Washington uses a dummy with padded arms and weighted tire base to practice various pass rush moves. The arms are especially effective to simulate the punch of the blocker.

Hoop drill

  • Duration: 2 minutes
  • Repetitions: 1 rep each side

Coordinating hips, hands and feet to successfully turn the corner is essential to getting pressure on the QB. That's why Coach Washington uses the hoop along with a punch from a coach to simulate working a move & turning the corner.

Water break

  • Duration: 1 minute

Always make sure your guys are hydrated!


  • Duration: 8 minutes
  • Repetitions: 3 reps each person each side

There isn't a better bang for your buck drill than the 3-on-1 drill. It's about as close as you're going to get to simulating real life blocking schemes with the guys on your D-Line. To execute it first signal the blocking scheme to your look team and then have your nose, defensive tackle or defensive end read and react to the blocking scheme.

A final word

Between 2011 - 2017 no group of defensive linemen produced more sacks than Coach Washington's defensive line and I'm sure you can see why. Coach Washington utilizes every second of his individual to work the fundamentals, practice new skills & program his D-Line for success.

That’s all for this week! See you again next week.

And whenever you are ready, there are 2 ways I can help you:

  1. Learn how to develop top tier pass rushers and a lethal pass rush attack here (1,000+ students)
  2. Learn how to turn your D-Line into a block destruction machine here (1,100+ students)


Jun 21, 2022
Skill Development

Join 13k+ subscribers receiving the D-Line Examples Newsletter

Every other Tuesday you'll receive one short actionable D-Line case study

No spam ever. Read our Privacy Policy
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

More from 

Skill Development


View All