As football has remained extremely popular throughout America over the last 50 years, other leagues have been formed over the years to tap into a massive fanbase. These leagues have taken football and have attempted to change the game to bring in a new generation of fans. One of these new types of football is called arena football.
Arena football is very similar to traditional American football with some differences. The most profound and obvious example of a difference is the existence of a sideline barrier that prevents the players from going out of bounds. There are also rebound nets on the back of each endzone, and if a football hits the net, the ball is still live, meaning that if a player catches after it rebounds, it still counts as a touchdown.
Like American football, there are kickoffs. However, there is no punting in the game. Dropkicks, mostly unused in traditional football, gain extra points in arena football. Additionally, there are some different rules about the formation of the players on offense and defense. There are only a few different legal formations, and on offense, one player is allowed to move before the play starts. Two-way players, players who play offense and defense, are standard in arena football.
The Arena Football League has introduced other differing concepts. For example, time in the fourth quarter of a game works differently than the other quarters. Additionally, instant replay is used for all fouls in arena football games. There is a continuing debate in the National Football League about the use of this technology. All of these changes make arena football distinct and unique from traditional American football.
The Arena Football League went bankrupt in November 2019 and has currently ceased all operations.