Blocking a kicking team player out of bounds is a penalty given when a member of the receiving team blocks their opponent in defiance of the restraining lines of a free kick formation during a kickoff. It results in a penalty of 10 yards for the offending team.
Blocking a kicking team player out of bounds is a 10-yard penalty called when a player from the receiving team illegally blocks their opponent out of bounds during a kickoff.
To understand what makes a block from the receiving team illegal and out of bounds, it's important to understand the restraining lines of a free kick formation. Restraining lines are boundaries which both the receiving and kicking team have to abide by the restraining lines
During a kickoff, both the receiving and kicking team have to abide by the free kick formation, which places the kicking team under restraining lines and the receiving team under a 15 yard setup zone which is placed 10 yards away from the kicking team's restraining line. Behind their own restraining line, the receiving team has 8 players in a 15-yard span of the field called the setup zone. Past the setup zone, only 3 players are allowed downfield to receive the kick. The area between the kicking and receiving team's restraining lines is called the no-block zone. Neither team is permitted to make blocks in the no-block zone until the ball has been touched or hit the ground.
Players from the receiving team cannot legally block a kicking team player in the no-blocking zone until the ball has been touched or hits the ground. When a player commits a foul for blocking a kicking team player out of bounds, it means they have made a block in the no-block zone before the ball has been touched or hit the ground after a kick. A penalty for blocking out of bounds is harsher than a penalty for just going out of bounds without contact, which is only 5 yards.
The penalty for blocking a kicking team player out of bounds is in place to help enforce the restraining lines, which ensures a fair chance the kicker will not be blocked and for the receiving team to catch a ball at kickoff.
|Blocking a Kicking Team Player Out of Bounds||10 Yards||10 Yards||10 Yards||N/A||10 Yards|
To signal a penalty for blocking a kicking team player out of bounds, referees will hold their arms in front of their chest and rotate their hands over one another in a circular motion.