Also known as the three-cone drill, the L drill is gaining popularity amongst scouts and teams. Not only does the drill test change of direction and bend, but it shows how coachable an athlete is. If an athlete is coached on the drill correctly, he should be able to shave off time in several spots. 

For these reasons, the L drill is probably my favorite test to coach, as I know there is a great opportunity for an athlete to excel – as long as they are patient and buy into my training techniques.

What to Know

You traditionally get one attempt at the L drill. The cones are usually 12” high safety cones (the orange ones). If contact is made with a cone, the rep is considered void. The two touches required in the drill are both done with the right hand. The total distance of the L drill is 30 yards.

What is Being Tested? 

The L drill tests change of direction and the ability to bend the edge.

Training Focus

Learning the steps and the placement of the L drill is crucial to obtaining a good time. A lot of time is spent on the first 10 yards, as this distance sets up the rest of the race. The participant must come out of a left-handed stance, which, for most, is the opposite of their traditional right-handed 3-point stance. 

Once this portion of the evaluation is mastered, we move on to the second cone turn. The swing around the top cone often separates a great time from a good time. We spend twice a week training the steps, and as the actual testing day gets close, we sometimes add a brush-up session per week. The key coaching cue is to think of turning your hips before you get to the lines. This mental guide should help the athlete stay in a straight line for the first 10 yards, which is key to the entire race. 

Historical Performance

Buster Skrine (CB Tennessee Chattanooga) – 6.44   

Buster Skrine came into the program as an unheralded CB from what, at that time, was a school more known for its basketball prowess, but he left with one of the best three-cone times in NFL Combine history. Buster’s overall performance was very memorable, as he would also go first in the 5/10/5 and the long shuttle. To top it off, he would get 20 on the bench and run 4.37 in the 40-yard dash. This performance would vault his draft status to the 137th pick overall.


Interested in this type of training for the NFL Combine or an upcoming Pro Day? Contact Rich Sadiv: 

Phone: 201-966-4441