3 Day Install and Practice Planning

Each year in Spring Ball or the earliest part of Summer, High School’s across the country begin installing their base offense. More and more teams are beginning to use the “3 day install”. This is a popular way that many colleges (and now High Schools) go about installing their offense. They break the offense apart into 3 total days. I first read about the 3 day install from a Smart Football post by Chris Brown  here back in 2011.  I have used a rough version of this since then but this year was by far my most organized/OCD spring to date.

The basic idea is to put it all in 3 days, and keep repeating that 3 day rotation.

  • Divide offense into days A, B, C
  • on Day 4 start back over with A
  • follow the rotation throughout Spring

Now I will discuss how I broke everything down for my days, how I installed, and how I have continued to use this progression into the Summer.

The Science behind 3 day install.  

Some people might think you are better off mastering one basic skill, or base play before moving on to add more.  This is an “old school” way of thought that is often referred to as blocking… this would be AAA, BBB, CCC learning.

The same skill concept 3 days in a row, before moving on to something new.  On the Surface this makes sense but modern educational research studies have shown that interleaving, “mixing it up” or ABC, ABC, ABC learning (rotating the skills/concepts being taught) is the most effective for skill and concept mastery.

This is applicable to education, learning musical instruments, and sports.  A more detailed article explaining this study can be found here.

Now that we understand why mixing it up works best, we can begin to apply it to an offense.

Deconstructing My Offense

The first thing I did was to make a spread sheet with every single personnel group, formation, motion, and play I wanted to install during Spring.

I had an ambitious install plan for the Spring in which we would install over 90% of the entire possible offense.

I broke the offense up as follows

3 day rotation ( A, B, C)

Each day would include

  • 2 run plays (grouped by family)
  • 2 quick game plays
  • 2 drop back plays
  • 1 “other” pass… screen, boot, power pass

After the 3 day rotation we have the potential for 6 runs, 6 quick concepts, 6 drop concepts, and 3 “other” concepts.  If you do not want to install that many plays… then “double up” on certain plays.  We did this with the quick and dropback game.  Each play actually got included 2x during the 3 days.

Day A: 

This is our Gap Scheme Day.  We work power and counter, as well as play action off of that.  We picked passes from the menu I created.

Day B:

This is our Zone Scheme Day. We work Inside and Outside Zone.  We work screen game off those actions and I picked passes from the menu I created.

Day C:

This is our “other” run game day.  We work buck sweep and toss on this day.  We rotate the passes again.


We started by teaching all of our 21 and 11 personnel formations during the first 3 days of practice.

Day 4, 5, 6:

Moving on to the 2nd time through our rotation… days 4, 5, and 6 we began adding more personnel/formations.  We added our split back, 12, 10 and 30 personnel groups/formations.

The order of the plays we worked stayed the same… The formations became the new learning.

Day 7, 8, 9:

Moving on to the 3rd time through our rotation… days 7, 8, and 9 we began adding in motion.  With our personnel and formations installed, the various motions became the new learning and how the motions related to the concepts.

Why I love this rotation:

I love this 3 day rotation because it makes scheduling practice… both the drills, and the scripts much easier to manage.  By splitting the offense up like this it narrows the focus down for each day… both in terms of Indy reps, and group/team reps.

I am an Offensive Line Enthusiast!  We have more skill development work to do than any other position.  I can not come close to working all of the various blocks we need in our tool box in a single day.  By splitting up the schemes, it lets me break down the Indy time to work on exactly what they need to do that day.

To put it in perspective… let’s look at just the run game.

On a gap scheme day (A) we work down blocks, gap doubles, and our pulls.

On a zone day (B) we work base blocks, combo blocks, and reach blocks.

On our “Other day” (C) we work different skills, fast reaches, Fb Logs, and perimeter pulls.

By narrowing the focus of what we will run during inside run and team that day, I can narrow what I need to work on during Indy.

It makes my time scripting plays for run, pass, and team periods much easier as well.  I do not have every play to choose from.  I have no more than 2 from each category to choose from, this lets me get multiple reps of the plays in, from different personnel groups or formations.  This also makes my practice planning much easier, and take up less time.  I don’t create a new practice plan each day.  There’s a practice plan and script for A, B, and C.  I can copy and paste these (using google drive for both) and make any small changes I need for that individual day.  I am never starting from scratch.  Having the schedule and script for A, B, C stay mostly the same lets me knock out any small changes or additions in less than 10 minutes, then I am printing it out and ready to roll for practice.

Moving into Summer:

Now that we have moved into Summer I have kept the same basic rotation but I will be tweaking it in one small way.

We practice 4x a week.  Monday – Thursday all Summer long.

So far I have stuck with the exact rotation (adding small wrinkles here and there, but the core is the same).

Mon A

Tues B

Wed C

Thurs A

Mon B

Tues C

Wed A

Thurs B

Mon C

Tues A

Wed B

Thurs C


What I will begin doing from Mid July on, is to “test” my players more.  Currently practices are focused on INDY and small group time with very little “team” going on.

I will begin starting the ABC rotation every Monday, and rather than restart on Thursday… I will use Thursday as a “review of ALL concepts” day.  I will use more team and group sessions, mix all of our schemes, and use this to really test how well things have sunk in with my kids.  This will be my assessment not just of how well they are learning, but more importantly how well I am teaching.  This will act just like a test in the classroom, and let me know what I need to spend more time working on on the white board, and on the field.

Mon A

Tues B

Wed C

Thurs: Review all “test day”

Moving into the season:

Once We begin school and move into the season I will have to get off my this Spring/Summer rotation because we are more limited in the days/time we have to practice.  I won’t be able to give each group of plays it’s own day, and practices will be about the game plan and match ups.  In season the focus shifts more to the opponent, but now… in the Spring/Summer portion of the off season, their is no opponent, it is all about learning for yourself and this system of installing an offense has been the most productive I have ever used or seen.  We were running plays better after 10 days of spring ball this year, than we were to start the season in 2015.



Game Planning

Recently I was asked by multiple Twitter Followers to talk about game planning and setting up game/call sheets for opponents.

Here is my process… I am by no means some game planning expert… I have had almost no mentorship to grow from in this aspect of coaching but I have applied the few “good ideas” I was taught and I have reflected, learned, and evolved over the last 7 years coaching football, especially the last 3 in which I have had a specific hand in calling the plays (JV OC, then Assistant to the Varsity OC, and finally this year Varsity OC).  These “good ideas” that were passed down to me I will refer to as “KEYS”, as in KEY things to being successful.

Some might dislike what/how I do, some might like it.

This is how I think I look:

This is how I probably look:
Game Planning:
Our Game Planning process starts Saturday afternoon in a typical week.  We played the night before, watch review, meet with our kids all on Saturday morning.  Late morning/Early afternoon we will trade film with our opponent for the following week.  Almost everyone has HUDL so it goes pretty quick.  I can usually be back home by 1:00 and ready to watch opponent film.  This is where the process begins.
I watch a lot of film.  I would guess on average I watch each opponent’s game film at least 10x during the week.  When I first get it I will make sure it is properly ODK’d and just give it a run through.  I will watch the whole thing one time through.  Since I only coach Offense , after that I focus on the opponent’s defense.  I will filter only their defensive snaps and watch them a few times through, noting the fronts and coverages on notepaper (I should be doing this on HUDL and it is my goal to use HUDL better this year).  Along with their base looks I will make any player notes that I observe… A superior player, a weak player, a kid with bad technique, or one who is “cheating” to make plays.
KEY #1: Find out a defense’s rules
It seems simple but I think it is overlooked.  The most important thing I am looking for when watching film is trying to become fluent in the opponent’s defensive rules.  Every GOOD defense (bad defense’s are usually just kids doing their own thing entirely) has a set of rules.  Players are taught alignment and assignment and with a game or two of film you should be able to figure out their base rules.
Where do they line up?
How do they call strength?
What coverage is their base? Change ups?
How do they cover trips?
How do they handle motion/shifts?
Once you get an understanding of what their rules are, they become more predictable and then YOU can begin to control THEM.  For example we live in trips.  The ball is on a hash so often it just makes sense.  One team we played last year ALWAYS brought their LB over from the weak side against trips to create a 3 on 3 match up to trips side.  I was able to quickly see that this must be his “rule”.  I knew I could get rid of that LB simply by going trips.  We went trips to the short side and would run sweep to the wide side and there was no force player.  We were able to control their alignment because we knew their rules.  That same team ALWAYS played in a stack against 2×2, but would bump over and walk someone down vs trips.  Gave us the front we wanted to run our counter play.  They allowed us to dictate what front they were in simply by formation.  This is just an example of using a defense’s rules against them.
*It is important to note that deciphering a defense’s rules doesn’t stop before kick off, this is going on throughout the game.  They might have something special saved for the game or make a change to THEIR game plan.  It is important to get a verification of, or find the change in their defensive rules in the first series.  I once heard a coach explain it like this, “I am willing to essentially give up my first possession of the game, if it allows me to figure out the defense’s rules that I can use against them for the rest of the game.”  That same coach always told me within his first series he wanted to show the defense something balanced, trips, motion, and empty all in their first 3 plays in some way.  From there he would base his play calling off of what was either confirmed/verified or what new information was learned as to the defense’s rules.
Key #2:
Draw up every single play.  I got this from a late great DC I used to work with.  He did this from a defensive perspective but I have copied it for offense.  He would get 3×5 cards and draw up every single play the offense ran in every piece of film he had.  He would go through this cards over and over again, drawing his defensive looks up against them and looking at their strengths/weaknesses.
For our offense I draw up every blitz/stunt I see on film.  I draw up every coverage I see on film.
My OL is going to have multiple days of Blitz PU against every blitz you have ever shown.  My QB will have thrown against every coverage you have shown.  We practice against a number of looks throughout the year so the kids pick up things fairly quickly but as an OL coach I have more confidence in my guys when I know they know how to pick up everything the defense can throw at them.
I do most of this work Saturday night.  We meet as a staff at one of our coach’s house on Sunday morning.  Each coach is responsible for watching film on their own and coming with notes prepared.  We watch the game as a staff one time through, bringing up any points we want to make about a specific play or player.  We share the ideas of what we each saw on film.  Coordinators will bring up what they want to focus on for the week and seek input from position coaches if there was anything they saw on film that the coordinator did not address.  Sometimes we are all on the same page, sometimes they bring something up, an idea I might have missed, sometimes they bring something up, I disagree and then shut them down.  Sometimes our Sundays are calm, sometimes we get heated up and things get a little more intense but I think the important thing is after Sunday’s meeting, it is over.. we have a plan, let’s implement it.
Our general practice plan is fairly consistent but we will make changes or focus on certain areas if it is a focus for us.  If I know a team likes to play man, our WRs will do more press get off technique that week.  If my OL will see slanting, we will work more against that.
I do not script our team practice time.  I call plays.  I give our DC the fronts, coverages, and blitzes that I would like to see and tell him to have at it.  I don’t want to see my perfect play call against the perfect defensive look because how often do you get that in the game.  I want to run a bunch of plays, fast, against the various predicted looks so I can get a sense of what is working and what we aren’t running well.
I don’t think of myself as an OC that is going to call the perfect play at the perfect time and fool the whole world.  I am trying to become the OC that gets so good at teaching his offense and packaging it together that even when I am an absolutely terrible, stupid, idiotic play call… the kids do their assignments and we pick up 4 yards and the first down.
Setting up Game Day sheet:
I look at Call Sheets different than most.  I HATE the situational call sheets most coaches use.  I just can’t see myself knowing ahead of time what the perfect call will be on 3rd&short, or 3rd&medium or any other situation coaches list on their laminated call sheets attached to their hip.
I feel like whatever call you make in a given situation has so many variables effecting it you can’t make the decision until that moment.  How much time is left?  Score? What has or hasn’t been working for you? Injuries? Momentum? I know most coaches prefer this method but it just isn’t for me.  I know it is designed to speed up the play calling process but I have seen coaches just stare into their call sheets like they’re waiting for it to speak to them or send some divine message of the right play call.  In my opinion “the right play” is constantly evolving, changing throughout the game.  There is no way to know what the best few options on 2nd &5 are until you actually get there.
I know what play I want to run in a given moment, I just need to be able to find it quickly to send it in.  This is a call sheet I used 2 years ago.
I have everything grouped by concept.  I memorized the layout so I could find the play I wanted right away.  Dropbacks in one location, screens in another, runs in another.  It is laid out in a way that works best for ME.  Our OC that year had a completely different game day call sheet that he had grouped by situations.  I think you have to know yourself and go with whatever way your brain is wired.


Install/Practice Plan

Installation and practice plans are popular topics with coaches and everyone has their preference.  if you have something that works for you, awesome, keep doing it, but I would like to share what I have done this year as a suggestion to others.


For our 10 days of spring ball we decided to use a 3 day install plan that is the new rage with many coaches, especially us spread guys.

Day 1 was all about teaching formation, stance, how to line up… the most basic elements that are required before you can even snap the ball.  We focused on this in team, and used the indy time to teach the drills that will be worked daily.

Days 2-10 were where we began the 3 day install plan.  If you are unfamiliar with the 3 day install it is quite simple… you take your entire offense, divide it up into 3 days, and cycle through the 3 days over and over again.

I was able to split up our plan quite symmetrically.  We have 3 base run schemes, Zone (IZ and OZ but very similar rules so I put them together), Counter, and Power.

We have 3 types of screens… Quick, Play Action, Jailbreak (also F slip screen)

We have 6 base pass concepts

I was able to make it so each day we covered 1 run, 1 screen, and 2 pass concepts.

For example,

Day 2 – IZ/OZ, Quick Screen, 4 verts and snag
Day 3 – Counter, Play Action Screen, Smash and curl/flat
Day 4 – Power, Jailbreak, Cross and flood

Days 5,6,7 would repeat
Days 8,9,10 would repeat

We used this same format through our first 3 weeks of summer practice as kids are still learning what the play is.

I found this narrowed focus for each day really helped the kids learn the play and get better at the individual role they have within the given play.

Now this week, as we prepare for camp I have switched up our practice plan and focus.  We know the basic rules of each play, but now I feel is the time to prepare for the most common looks we will see by working all of our plays against a given look per day.

For example in our 4 day/ week plan we will execute all of our plays each day.

However each day will have a specific focus from the scout defense.

Monday: 4 man front, 1 high … cover 1/3
Tuesday: 4 man front, 2 high… cover 2/4/2 man
Wednesday: 5 man front or 3-3… 1 high… cover 1/3
Thursday: 5 man front or 3-4… 2 high… cover 2/4/2 man

Therefore each week we will have seen essentially every look we will see from a defense in a game and run all of our plays against it.  I think it enhances learning because our kids have to execute ALL of our base plays rather than just a few for the day.  I wouldn’t force this upon them in the beginning, but after 5 weeks of practice between spring and summer if they don’t understand the backside guard and tackle pull on counter they never will.

It makes it easier on the scout defense as well because they only have to learn 1 look for the given day, and we run all of those coverages so the DBs and LBs have it easy.  The defense can get aligned faster which means my offense can practice faster.

I am a big believer in the 3 day plan for install… and this 4 day plan for practice.  It is a slight change up from the way we did things as a team last season but I see it paying off already.  At the end of every week we will have seen every front, box count, and coverage we will see in the season.

My Play Calling Thought Process

Duece gave a great break down of Paul Johnson’s If/Then thought process when calling offense the triple option…HERE .

It got me thinking about If/Then games within our spread offense and what I use when calling offense.  Now I do not have it broken down into an actual sheet, this is all stuff that has been floating around in my brain, this is actually the first time I will have put these thoughts down in writing so please excuse me if it becomes an incoherent mess.

I believe in having answers for anything a defense may throw at you.  What I like about being in spread, and using no huddle forces the defense into a lot of vanilla looks, or they are at the very least predictable… most teams sit in 1 or 2 different things against us and just stay.  We see very little interplay variability.

We primarily operate from 2×2 and 3×1 formations.  I will refer to our 2×2 formation as Ace for the remainder of this post.

The Box

If we are in Ace, the defense will surely have corners aligned in the area of our outside WRs.  Every team we play will have at least 1 Safety high.  Defenses must put defenders at least somewhat removed from the box in .  That is 5 players that we have removed from the box.

Basic math: 11-5 = 6 Defenders in the box… 5 if they play a 2 high coverage.

As an OL coach I can draw up a multitude of schemes to run against 5 and 6 man boxes.

Keep them out of the box
Next I look at the defenses overhang players… the guy between the team’s CB and their DE.  If they are sound defensively they will likely have this player at least splitting the difference between our OT and slot WR when we are in ACE.  I WANT to run the ball… if this player begins cheating his alignment toward the box in order to play the run, then I will use bubbles or screens outside to out leverage him immediately.  Play action bubble was a staple of my offense last season, it is a great answer for OLB/SS’s who wish to play the run.

 I am a huge believer in using trips.  Being in trips puts a great deal of stress on the defense, some defenses have major adjustments, some have no adjustments… either way you must be ready with the appropriate answer for the defensive reaction.

Using TRIPS is especially important when on the hashes.  HS Hash marks are so wide I feel you almost HAVE to be in trips to the wide side.  Being in Ace on a Hash does not spread the defense out because your slot and SE are so close, the overhang does not have to remove himself from the box.

Remember removing defenders is not just critical for running success, it makes pass protection much easier and more clearly defined.

I look at numbers to the trips side.  How many defenders do they have aligned to the trips side?
If they only have 2 defenders to cover my 3 WR’s then I want to attack that area of the field.  I can do this through a flood concept, any of our screens, and outside runs to that side… I have them outnumbered and that is where I must attack.

If they put 3 defenders over my 3 WR’s, any of the above plays can still work, but I begin looking at the rest of the defense as well.  To put 3 defenders over my 3 WR’s the defense has to do one of 3 things:

Walk a defender out of the box
If they walk an inside backer out of the box to the trips side then I want to run inside.  Think about it… we already have reduced numbers in the box via formation, and they have just removed one of the defenders.

Shift backers to the Trips side
Seeing as removing a backer from the box weakens the inside run ability of the defense, many DC will either flop their overhang player from the weakside, or bump the backers over…  Overhang bumps inside, bumping all backers over until the ILB on the trips side now walks out over the #3 WR.  If a team does this they have covered your 3 WR’s on the trips side, maintained their numbers in the box they began with, but they have opened up possibilities on the backside.  Without an overhang player on the single WR side, that WR has a lot of room to work with, this is where you play your stud WR.  Without an overhang player (and often a soft corner) I can attack the weak flat area with slants, curls, and screens.

A great play when on a Hash is going trips to the wide side, and throwing a play action screen back to the single WR. Play fake gets the defense flowing to the wide side, and being on the hash gives the OT a shorter distance to run to block the corner.  Without an overhang player to the weakside this can really hurt the defense.

Hitting the RB in the weak flat is another great way of exposing no overhang player.  Outside runs (Jet or my favorite, QB sweep) also do the trick.

Bring down the Free Safety
If a team walks their FS down to our trips side… then I want to attack deep.  I can run my backside WR on posts and he has the whole field to work with , since there is no FS.  Most teams will not do this, he may cheat to the trips but few teams I have seen will walk him up to play over one of our 3 WR’s.  The other 2 scenarios are more likely.

For this scenario to take place a defense would have a CB, LB, and FS over your 3 WR’s.  Keep their box numbers and keep their overhang, they can stay sound against many of the plays I have described but they are completely vulnerable deep down the MOF.

That is the thought process I use when calling plays.  I enjoy the chess match component of coaching football more than anything else, and a playcaller must always have the next answer ready.

Last year I went even crazier into this, I would use 4×1, some unbalanced stuff with WRs… all trying to gain numbers advantage somewhere.  I followed the same logic as above.

Of course there are other factors that go in to play calling but these are some general things I examine from the defense when calling plays.

Do Less!

I have to admit that I am guilty of  wanting to be the whiteboard Guru… always wanting to have the last word, always thinking I will be right, always having the adjustment or play that can beat whatever Defense we see… but realistically football comes down to what can you get your 11 offensive players to execute on a given play.  Sure if you could find a way to mix veer, with the deception of wing t, the passing and numbers advantage of spread, the power of DW, the illegality of the A-11, the downhill aspect of the I, the coolness of the Pistol, and the speed of the Fly offense you would be in business.  However it all comes down to being able to teach your kids your scheme, and more importantly how you want to execute/block that scheme.

My Friend Kunu, explaining the Do Less attitude…”The less you do, the more you do”

I think all coaches are guilty of the following… Man if we could add “this” in, we are in business… or just add “that”… but how does it really fit into your scheme of things? what you teach? what you know how to teach? and what your kids can handle…

We do not have the best off season attendance in the world, it is better than other places I have been/seen but it is by no means perfect like a De La Salle… So we have to do a fair amount of reteaching.  The kids I coach have a very low football IQ, even our kids who played in youth really lacked skilled coaching and therefore do not know what you would think a kid who’s been playing since he was 7 would know.

Because of this, I am always trying to find ways to make things simple, especially for my OL.  This is why i am a huge fan of counter and power blocking schemes.  They can be used with a huge variety of backfield actions, multiple ball carriers, formations, and motions, but it still similar up front for my OL.
Our screen game is very similar to our guards as they release on bucksweep.  i try to have as many things overlap as I possibly can.  Yes, there are still times when I think a certain play might hurt a team, but if it doesn’t fit in with something I already teach my OL, I am 100% against it.

It comes down to the old saying, “jack of all trades, master of nothing”

I never want my offense to be like this, being average or below average at a ton of plays, compared to being very good at a couple.  If you look at winning teams, they do not beat anyone by having a tremendous playbook, they do it because they can execute their bread and butter over and over again, successfully, even if everyone  in the stadium knows the play.
At one of my previous schools, we were the exact opposite.  We started out as a split back fly team, then our OC wanted to add in I to be “more down hill”… then we added in some spread to “utilize our QB better”, none of the things we did married up very well with each other, we were running certain plays only out of one set, it was like having 3 different offenses and we were unable to mix them together in anyway.  So we ran a lot of plays, gave the Defense a lot to look at, but we sucked at running the plays.  We had way too much on our plate, especially the OL, because I had about 20 run schemes to teach them, because everything was a little different depending on what we were in.  I hated it, I was miserable as a coach, and I refused to be a part of anything like that again.
We added plays on when we were still struggling with what we already had in, absolutely a joke.
This year I absolutely refuse to add on a single thing, until I am comfortable with where we are at in the other areas of our run game.  I do not care if we go into our first game and we can only run Counter and Power… we are gonna be DAMN good at Power and Counter then.
So since we are all preparing our playbooks for next season, remember less = more.

Installing a No Huddle Offense

This Post is in response to my viewers choice post.  I will probably pick another topic to write on from the comments as well but I know a decent amount about No Huddle so I decided (since I have some down time ) to do a write about on some things to consider for coaches who want to apply no huddle to their offensive attacks.

No Huddle is basically broken down to the following

  • Wristbands
  • Hand/Body Signals
  • Verbal

We use wristbands at my current school.  I like it because the players have to remember almost nothing.  It tells them exactly what to do. This method isn’t as fast paced, but it is a very effective way of relaying the play into the entire team (all 11 players wear wristbands).  One down side of this is you got what you got, there is no adding a wrinkle, or changing something on a play mid game, whatever you have on the wristband is what you have, so as a coach you have to be very solid in your preparation when you are creating your wristbands.

Hand/body/verbal signals I will talk about together because they are essentially the same thing, a physical way of displaying all relevant play information to all players on the offense.

Every snap you need to be able to relay:

  • Formation
  • Any Motions
  • Play name
  • Play Direction (if it’s a run)

I think that when using a No Huddle Offense (with signals) simplicity is key.  The more things you want to try to run the more the kids have to remember, therefore don’t expect your kids to line up and run plays as fast as Oregon if you give them 100,000 things they need to remember.  There is an inverse relationship between how quickly one can make decisions ( choose what they have to do on a play) and the number of possible choices they have to choose from… i.e. The more more you put on their plate the longer it will take them to react to the signal and understand their responsibility on the given play.
That being said I think you can definitely get your Base offense installed with no huddle signals without a problem.

Let us consider formations.  You must either stay in the same formation every time so the players can get reset right away, or when you call/signal in a new formation you begin doing it as soon as the previous play whistle blows.

If you want to align in Trips Left, you better be screaming, or signaling it right away as soon as the previous play is blown dead, that way the kids will pop up and can immediately get set in the new formation for the next down.

In terms of the actual motion and play calls I have 2 things that I firmly believe in

  • Let the kids come up with their own words/signals
  • Use a multi coach system to communicate directly with the position for hand signals

This first point is fairly simple, and I used it with my players this year.  If they are the ones who make up the names/signals they have more of a sense of ownership and I feel they will be more likely to remember the names/signals.  It is OK to give them some constraints, and try to group your plays together.
i.e. All runs are Cars, All quick game is Cities, all 5 step pass game are states, all screens are colleges…
It honestly doesn’t matter what system you use, just pick something for each so the kids can associate it with the type of play, this will aid them in being able  to recall what it means.

Now the second point, I feel is very important, for the Offensive Line.
As an OL coach I do not want my guys ever having to think of formations, motions, what routes any WRs are running.  They know blocking schemes, and protections that is it.  That is all I want them to have to remember.
Similarly the WRs do not care what my Ol is doing they want to know what route concept they have.

With all verbal calls you really do not need a multi coach system, because the words can tell multiple groups what they need to know.  If you use the same protection on all cities, and you are yelling out Cincy Cincy, then it is relaying the route concept to your skills, and the protection to your OL.

However if you want to hand signal plays in, it is best to do so in a multi coach system.
Your OL stares at the OL – getting a hand signal for protection, or run blocking scheme and direction
You signal into QB entire play because he needs to know it all.
RB coach signals to RB(s) what they are doing
WR coach signals to them what concept they have or if it is a run

You can have some dummy coaches on the sideline to throw opponents off.

You as the OC are the orchestrator, you have to get the play call and relay it to your assistants so that they can relate the important info to their individual position.  I like this because the players need only look to their position coach and they get their job on the next snap.  The players spend the most time with their position coach so they have a lot of time to be together and come up with signals/calls that they can all remember.

Another key to running No huddle, is as the OC you have to always have the next play ready.  If you are standing there mid game, with no idea what you want to do, then all 11 of your kids, and your assistants if they are signaling, are standing around too, doing nothing.
If speed isn’t important for you then this isn’t bad, but if your goal is to go HYPER DRIVE then you have to always be 1 play ahead.

Benefits of No Huddle
Everyone talks about wearing out the Defense, and limiting substitutions when using No Huddle, but I think the best benefit is not what it does for you in games, it is what it does for you at practice.  Not huddling up between plays at practice allows us to get at the VERY LEAST twice as many plays when we go team as we would be able to do if we huddled up.  Therefore you are getting that many more reps every single practice.  Imagine doubling or even tripling your reps per day, from spring ball in May, all through the Summer, and through the season.

Final Thought

No huddle really comes down to creating another language… A Language used to describe necessary info to your kids.  It is just a matter of coming up what you and your kids can remember.