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By Jordan McGowan, Head Coach, Brookside Christian HS (CA)

That fast screen is a great way to stretch the field quickly at the snap of the ball. See how Coach McGowan has used this concept within his Air Raid system. Read it here...


By Jordan McGowan
Head Coach
Brookside Christian HS (CA)
Twitter: @coach_bdba

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unnamedHere at Brookside, our brand of the Air Raid offense mixes traditional Air Raid concepts, several RPOs and our own variation the ever-popular fast screen. Our offense is designed to get the ball out as fast as possible to our athletes in space, whether it be through speed option, toss, RPOs or fast screens. We really stress yards after catch with our receivers. Their goals are to have at least 40% of our receiving yards being after the catch (YAC).

Base Concept

We are vanilla in our formation looks, spending about 35% in 2x2, 40% in 3X1, and 20% in empty. Very rarely do we go with 2 backs or with a TE set. Our goal is to use these formations to indentify where we have space or an advantage athletically and then to attack that space. The majority of the teams that we faced ran 4-2 with Cover 1, but we also saw some 4-1 box with man under 2 behind it.


The fast screen has a number of benefits. Not only does it give our QB an easy completion, but it also gives us big play ability and helps us get our receivers involved in the game. We had success throwing the fast screen to the 1 receiver side away from trips or away from motion. We like to run zone away from the fast screen (even giving it a few times) to freeze the screen side flat player. We also like to run our double slant combo away from the screen. This gave the QB an option if he saw better grass away from the screen or if the defense wanted to overplay the called fast screen.

We rep our fast screens daily in practice for at one or 2 five minute periods. To do this, we would set out landmark cones for offensive line as well as the receivers. As we began to show that we could hit those landmarks, we would slowly progress the receivers into reading the most dangerous man (MDM).

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  • The post-snap progression that Coach McGowan uses to teach the Z to block either the corner or slot defender.
  • What Coach McGowan tells the slot to do if the slot defender attacks the bubble.
  • The pre-snap protocol the QB goes through to get out of the fast screen concept.
  • How Coach McGowan game plans the screen game based off film study and personnel deficiencies of the defense.
  • Plus game film of all these concepts.

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Fast Screen has been a fast way to get our offense rolling the past 2 years. It helps build our QB’s confidence, allows us to get specific receivers involved and has netted very good results. You have so many ways to attack the defense in the fast screen whether it be from different sets or different guys catching the ball. Each option is an easy way to get the defense to adjust to you and set something up. It is highly effective versus zone or man coverage and with the different looks can be added into your weekly play calling without changing too much no matter what system you run.

Meet Coach McGowan: Coach McGowan is heading into his 2nd season as the Head Coach at Brookside Christian. Coach McGowan began his coaching career at Sacramento City College as the secondary coach after his playing career ended after being released from the AFL’s San Jose Sabercats following his senior year at Humboldt State. After two years, leading SCC’s secondary where he helped produce a CCCAA top 25 pass defense, 1 All-American, 4 All-Conference players and 6 transfers he took over at San Juan HS in Citrus Heights where he improved offensive production in yards per game (Offensive YPG from 173.3 in 2014 to 374.9 in 2015 at San Juan) and took over at Brookside Christian in 2016. In his first year at Brookside, McGowan was able to improve scoring offense from 28 touchdowns in 2015 to 78 touchdowns in 2016 which helped pave the way for a league and section championship. McGowan has 3 children (2 boys and a beautiful baby girl) and is held together by his high-school-sweetheart turned wife Adriana.



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