Taking a pass close to the defensive line needs the receiver to step away from the contact, and quickly. If they have a supporting player behind them, they can also step and pass into the space they left behind. Use this exercise to develop the footwork, handling and support skills needed. MORE
VIDEO: Passing out of the tackle drills with Richard Hill
Develop your players’ skills to pass out of the tackle, so maintain continuity without having to use rucks. This keeps the defence moving backwards and unable to realign and organise themselves.
- Put the players into groups of three.
- One player acts as a tackler, and two as a ball carrier and support player.
- The ball carrier must always attack the edges of the defender, using evasive skills to get to the edge of the tackler (if not beat them).
- The ball carrier passes as they are falling.
- The support player should be communicating all the time and be behind the ball carrier, reading which way they might go.
Passing off the floor
- If the support is a bit slower getting to the ball carrier, then the ball carrier has to land on the ground and pop the ball up.
- Note that the ball carrier pushes the ball up and into the path of the runner.
Fend and pass (when hand-offs are allowed)
- The ball carrier fends off or grabs and pulls/pushes the tackler around about chest height, before passes behind the tackler to the support player.
- More appropriate when the tackler goes high, aiming to wrap up the ball.
- The ball needs to be kept away from the tackler.
Here are some more passing out of the tackle skills and scenarios…