Ninh explains:- The Rules of American Football The object of the game is for your team to
score more points than the opposing team. Teams are made up of 46 players in the NFL,
with 11 players taking the field at any one time. The field is 100 yards long by 53 yards wide,
with two 10 yard endzones at each end. White markings on the field help players,
referee’s and spectators keep track of what’s going on. The game starts with a kickoff.
The team with possession of the ball is known as the offense, and the team without the ball
is the defense. The job of the offense is to move the ball
up the field and score points. This can be done by either running forwards
with the ball, or by throwing it up the field for a teammate to catch. The offense is given 4 chances (or 4 downs)
to make at least 10 yards. If the offense manages to move the ball 10
yards or more, they will retain possession of the ball whilst given another 4 downs to
make another 10 yards. On your TV screen, you will see this graphic.
This tells you what down the team is on and this tells you how many yards they need to
make. If you’re also watching this on TV, they will also show the lines they need to
cross in order to make their downs. The defence’s job is to stop the offense
moving the ball forwards by tackling. This includes pulling them to the ground,
stopping them from moving forward or forcing them off the field. If the offense fails to move the ball 10 yards
within 4 downs, the ball is given to the defending team at that point.
The defending team will then bring on their offensive players and try and move the ball
in the opposite direction so that they can score. You will most likely see an offense kick the
ball away on fourth down to make it more difficult for the other team to score. The teams will usually have three different
units of 11 players that come on the field at different times. They include: The Offense.
These players will usually come on the field when they have possession of the ball.
The offensive unit consists of these positions The quarterback is the most important player
on the field as he’s the one who decides to pass the ball up the field, hand it off
to a teammate so that they can run with it, or run with it himself.
These offensive line positions are usually responsible for protecting the quarterback.
The wide receivers are responsible for running down the field to catch the ball thrown by
the quarterback, The running back and full back is responsible
for running with the ball up the field. The Defense
These players will usually come on the field when the other team has the ball.
The defensive unit consists of these positions –
The defensive line is responsible for moving past the offensive line.
The line-backers stop running backs coming through the defensive line and they also are
responsible for attacking the quarterback. The cornerbacks try and stop the wide receivers.
And the safeties try and stop a pass up the middle of the field. Special Teams.
Special teams are specialist players that come on the field when there is a kick involved.
Within the special teams is a mix of offensive and defensive players mixed with either a
punter or kicker for offense, or a punt returner for defense. Now you know what all the players do and how
the game is played. But how do you score? In American Football, there’s four different
ways of scoring: 1. Touchdown:
The main way of scoring is via a touchdown. If the ball is carried into the endzone area,
or thrown and caught in the endzone, this is a touchdown and is worth 6 points.
Unlike in Rugby, you do not need to touch the ball down on the ground, all you have
to do is cross the line with the nose of the ball to score. 2. Extra points.
Once a touchdown has been scored, you have the option of kicking it through the uprights
for an extra point, or try and pass or run the ball into the endzone again for an extra
two points. Most teams play it safe and go with the one
point. 3. Field Goal.
At any time, the team with the ball can kick the ball between the posts and over the crossbar.
To do this, they must hand it to a teammate who will hold it on the ground ready for a
kicker to make the kick. A successful kick scores 3 points. 4. Safety.
If the defense tackles an offensive player behind his own goal line, the defending team
scores two points. The game is played in 4 x 15 minute quarters,
for a combined playing time of 60 minutes. Highest score at the end of 60 minutes wins.
Ties are rare in American Football, and overtime periods are played if necessary to determine
a winner. Different leagues have different rules about tie games. Is that it? Is that all I need to know. Well, you’re almost there, but American
Football is filled with lots of rules, and you’ll need to understand a few more of
them before you watch or play a game. For example. FUMBLE
If a ball carrier or passer drops the ball, that’s a fumble. Any player on the field can
recover the ball by diving on it or he can run with it. The team that recovers a fumble
gets possession of the ball. INTERCEPTION
An aggressive defense can regain possession of the ball by catching (intercepting) passes
that are meant for players on the other team. Both fumble recoveries and interceptions can
be run back into the end zone for touchdowns. SACK
If the defense tackles a Quarterback whilst he has possession of the ball, this is known
as a ‘sack’. This is detrimental to the offense, as a down is wasted and it usually
results in a loss of yards. INCOMPLETE PASS
If a pass intended to a receiver hits the ground first, it is ruled an incomplete pass.
A down is wasted and play restarts from the sport of the last down. PENALTY
If a player breaks one of the rules, referees will throw flags onto the field.
They will determine who made the foul and how many yards his team should be penalised. CHALLENGE
If a coach disagrees with a decision on the field, they can throw red flags onto the field.
The previous play will then be reviewed and if the challenge is successful – the ruling
on the field is reversed. If the challenge is unsuccessful and the ruling
on the field stands, they forfeit one timeout. TIMEOUTS
If a team wants to stop the clock to regroup, take a break or discuss strategy, they are
allowed three time-outs per half. Each time out lasts 60 seconds. Players get a break
of 12 minutes at half time. This is all a lot to take in, but once you
start playing or watching American Football, the rules will become clear. If you have found this video at all helpful,
please like, share with your friends, rate and comment. It takes me ages to make one
of these videos and good karma is always appreciated. Be sure to follow me on twitter also, but
in the meantime – enjoy American Football. Ninh Ly, www.ninh.co.uk, @NinhLyUK