5 Flag Football Tips for Beginner Quarterbacks

Have you played quarterback in the past but are new to flag football? Or maybe you’ve been playing flag football for awhile and are just now trying out the quarterback position?  Here are some basic flag football tips for new and beginner quarterbacks to help set you on the right track.

Find a ball that’s right for you
Sounds simple right? Well most of the time it’s not. I have seen so many new quarterback with good arms look like they are shot putting a ball because the ball is too heavy or a pass being a duck because of the lack of air in the ball. In flag football, you don’t have to use the big leather bricks that you used in tackle football so pick a kind you feel comfortable with. Adjust the amount of air in the ball, leather or composite, college or high school size, even how heavy the ball is. My favorite, and a widely used ball, is the composite Wilson GST’s with a decent amount of air taken out. I find it much easier to catch and pretty easy to throw. Find the one you like and let it fly.

Develop your system and don’t be a QB you’re not
There are a ton of plays that are out there for you to learn. TRY THEM ALL! There will be some that you are comfortable with and some that won’t work for you. Everybody good QB in flag is different. You have drop back gunslingers, your tricky qbs, and everything in between. You have to figure out where you are on that scale and trial and error is how you will learn. The most common mistake I see out of new QB’s is they try and learn from the wrong guy and/or try and become someone they are not. I am a tricky system QB. I would never try to be a drop back passer. That just isn’t me.  Find the style that is best for your skills and let it fly.

This isn’t tackle football
Don’t go in thinking that it is. No one can hit you when you are stepping into a pass or disrupt a timing route because of press coverage. If they do, it will be a penalty (or atleast it should) and you get a first down. Be smart and use that to your advantage.

Know your situational football
Until now you probably have had a coach to tell you what to run and when to run it. Guess who the coach is now? You. You are literally the field general. You are now responsible for calling your own plays and executing them. Learn what you should call and in what situation. A 3rd and 5 play call is going to be very different from a 3rd and 15. If you only get 5 yards on first, what should your second down play call be. You need to know the time and score as well. After a while it becomes habit but you need to make the effort at first.

Play as much as possible
This one is self-explanatory. The more you play the better you become. There are leagues and tournaments almost every day of the week. Don’t go broke or get divorced for playing so much but take advantage of the days you can play. Check out our calendar to see what leagues and tournaments are in your area.


Travis Burnett

A pioneer in the flag football community, Travis helped co-found the Flag Football World Championship Tour, FlagSpin and USA Flag. Featuring 15+ years of content creation for the sport of flag football, creating and managing the largest flag football tournaments on the planet, coaching experience at the youth and adult level as well as an active player with National and World Championship level experience.

  1. Do you have any tips on how to break in a brand new leather football?

    • Water and sandpaper! That sounds weird, but new leather footballs are so slick alot of the time, a good technique I’ve used going back to our high school days is to drench the football in water and lightly scrub it with sandpaper to remove the slick coating on it, mimicking extended use on concrete, turf, etc that wears it down slowly. Have to be careful not to overdue it, but it has worked great for me in the past!

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