John Madden doesn’t believe in the NFL’s Heads Up Football program

John Madden doesn’t believe in the NFL’s Heads Up Football program Photo:

Hall of Fame coach and legendary NFL broadcaster John Madden said he doesn’t believe in the league’s Heads Up Football program, saying kids as young as six or seven shouldn’t be wearing helmets and learning tackling drills. 

According to USA Football’s website, the Heads Up Program aims to help make football “better and safer” for youth and high school football players through education and certification.

At a roundtable discussion during the Hall of Fame weekend, Madden said he doesn’t believe the fundamentals and techniques of football can be taught to coaches in a short period of time. 

More: 2014 NFL training camp: Latest news, rumors and buzz

“[T]hey can’t learn them in a short time,” Madden said, via Pro Football Talk.  “I was a coach, and I put a lot of education and experience into coaching. . . .  How long does it take to get a certificate?”

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said it takes around 90 minutes to get certified as a coach in the program. 

“And all due respect to the program, I don’t believe in it,” Madden said. "I respect coaches, I respect what good coaches do.  I know that you don’t learn to be a coach in an hour and a half.”"

- Scooby Axson


Promoted Stories

More NFL


Drag this icon to your bookmark bar.
Then delete your old SI.com bookmark.


Click the share icon to bookmark us.