Game: Deny the Touchdown

Deny the Touchdown is a great game to incorporate another sport to teach the skill of passing in basketball.  The game helps to work on when to pass at the right time, how to cut and get open without the ball and learning how to deny passes on defense.

Set-up requires 8 cones and a basketball. Mark clear boundaries and end-zones, creating a “football field” playing area. Set-up multiple play areas (depending on numbers and available space). Divide players into teams of 3-4, assigning 3 (or more) teams to each playing area. One team starts on offense at their own end-zone, with another starting on defense. Additional teams will wait off the court, and will rotate in throughout the drill.

  • The offense passes the basketball into the opposite end-zone for a “touchdown”
  • The offense is not allowed to dribble the basketball, moving the ball by passing it
  • The defense must prevent passes, using deny position and defensive positioning
  • If the offense gets the ball to the opposite end-zone, they earn a point
  • Rotate teams (from offense to defense) and have new teams enter the drill on offense
  • Coach players to experiment with fakes and change of direction moves
SKILL FOCUS Passing, Footwork, Defense, Offense
AGE (STAGE) 6+ (FUNdamentals, L2T)
EQUIPMENT Basketball and Cones
  1. Instead of an end-zone, have them shoot the ball into the basket to gain points.
  2. Limit the number of passes before entering the end-zone (e.g. 5 passes before it’s a turnover).
  3. After scoring a touch-down, you can get one of the players on the offensive team to shoot a free throw as an “extra point” like in football.

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