Sean McVay wants his players to use the Jugs machine the right way

USA TODAY Sports

In training camp, pass catchers catch plenty of passes from quarterbacks. They also catch them from a machine that has one purpose. To simulate to throwing of a pass.

But there’s a caveat when it comes to using the Jugs machine, in the opinion of Rams coach Sean McVay.

“If they’re working the Jugs, I would like to see them move because you don’t catch many routes stationary,” McVay told reporters on Saturday. “So we need to be working the top of the routes. So if you see them on the Jug, say ‘Hey, make sure we’re working the top of the route.’ We’re not just sitting there catching static routes. That’s not a very reflective drill of what happens in the games. You tell them that next time you see them on the Jug.”

That makes sense. Rarely if ever is a player standing still, waiting for a ball to arrive. There’s motion, or at a minimum the anticipation of motion as soon as the ball gets there.

That’s the difference between working hard and working smart. Standing still and catching balls shot their way doesn’t make a guy any better at catching balls in games. Simulating the final move at the top of the route before focusing on making the catch does.

8 responses to “Sean McVay wants his players to use the Jugs machine the right way

  1. What the players do with the jugs machine behind closed doors is really none of my business.

  2. These are details that separate good coaches from great coaches and McVay is clearly one of the best.

  3. Rams: Best DT, Best CB, Best WR, Best Coach, Best GM, Best Stadium, Best Weather. If you find that offensive, be offended.

  4. Kupp caught a lot of hook passes last year. Essentially standing still.

  5. Baseball players practice hitting using a tee, soft toss, and using a pitching machine, and 50 mph batting practice, yet nothing quite simulates a real pitch. Its called practice. Lighten up.

  6. Well duh. Didn’t know that catching a pass while standing still was even a thing. Does anyone do that — practice or otherwise?

  7. If this makes McVay a genius then I must be some kind of prophet. I was using a pitching machine to toss fly balls to a spot in the outfield for 9-year old Little Leaguers. And they couldn’t sit under the landing spot. They had to start from a spot to the left, and to the right, and well in front, and well behind. Because fly balls are rarely hit directly at an outfielder. That was 1995.

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