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Football Running Back

What is a running back? The running back can be a ball carrier, receiver, or blocker depending on the play. Get ready to learn all about football running backs.

Running Back

The running back is a player on the offense who can run with the ball and catch passes thrown by the quarterback. There are three main types of running backs:

Football Running Back

The differences between running backs is based on their:

Half back

A half back is a running back that is positioned close to the quarterback on running plays. They take the hand off on running plays and are faster and smaller than the fullback.

Football Halfback


A tailback is a running back similar to a half back. Tailbacks are positioned behind the quarterback forming a T shape on the field.

Football Tailback


A fullback is a running back that is positioned close to the half back or tailback at the start of the down. Fullbacks are bigger than normal running backs. The fullback defends the ball carrier from being tackled.

Football Fullback

Passing Plays

On a passing play the running back will get open on the field for pass thrown by the quarterback.

Running Plays

On a running play the running back (half back or tailback) will get the ball from a hand off from the quarterback. The fullback will protect the ball carrier (half back or tailback) from being tackled by defensive players.

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