HomeMore Sports

Football

American Football101ArticlesBowl GamesCoachingCollege FootballDefensive AlignmentsDrillsEquipmentFlag FootballHistoryHow ToKick TypesLeaguesLingoNFL FootballNFL TeamsOffensive FormationsOfficialsPass TypesPenaltiesCFL Football Penalties ReferenceCFL Football Penalties Reference By CategoryCollege Football Penalties ReferenceCollege Football Penalties Reference By CategoryFootball 10 Yard Penalties ListFootball 15 Yard Penalties ListFootball 5 Yard Penalties ListFootball Assisting The Runner PenaltyFootball Blocking a Kicking Team Player Out of Bounds PenaltyFootball Chop BlockFootball Clipping PenaltyFootball Defenseless Player PenaltyFootball Defensive Delay Of Game PenaltyFootball Defensive Holding PenaltyFootball Defensive Offside PenaltyFootball Defensive Pass Interference PenaltyFootball Delay Of Game PenaltyFootball Delay Of Kickoff PenaltyFootball Disconcerting Acts or Signals PenaltyFootball Disqualification PenaltyFootball Double Foul PenaltyFootball Encroachment PenaltyFootball Equipment Violation PenaltyFootball Excess Timeouts PenaltyFootball Excessive Celebration PenaltyFootball Facemask PenaltyFootball Fair Catch Interference PenaltyFootball False Start PenaltyFootball Forcibly Contacting a Player Out of Bounds PenaltyFootball Foul TypesFootball Goaltending PenaltyFootball Horse Collar PenaltyFootball Illegal Bat PenaltyFootball Illegal Blindside Block PenaltyFootball Illegal Block Above The Waist PenaltyFootball Illegal Block After Fair Catch Signal PenaltyFootball Illegal Block Below the Waist PenaltyFootball Illegal Block In The Back PenaltyFootball Illegal Contact PenaltyFootball Illegal Crackback PenaltyFootball Illegal Cut Block PenaltyFootball Illegal Double Team Block PenaltyFootball Illegal Formation PenaltyFootball Illegal Forward Handoff PenaltyFootball Illegal Forward Pass PenaltyFootball Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball PenaltyFootball Illegal Motion PenaltyFootball Illegal Peel Back PenaltyFootball Illegal Shift PenaltyFootball Illegal Snap PenaltyFootball Illegal Substitution PenaltyFootball Illegal Touching of a Forward Pass PenaltyFootball Illegal Touching of a Kick PenaltyFootball Illegal Use Of Hands PenaltyFootball Illegal Wedge PenaltyFootball Incomplete Forward Pass PenaltyFootball Ineligible Downfield Kick PenaltyFootball Ineligible Downfield Pass PenaltyFootball Ineligible Receiver Downfield PenaltyFootball Intentional Grounding PenaltyFootball Invalid Fair Catch Signal PenaltyFootball Kick Catch Interference PenaltyFootball Kickoff Out Of Bounds PenaltyFootball Leaping PenaltyFootball Leg Whip PenaltyFootball Leverage PenaltyFootball Low Block PenaltyFootball Neutral Zone Infraction PenaltyFootball Offensive Holding PenaltyFootball Offensive Offside PenaltyFootball Offensive Pass Interference PenaltyFootball Offside On Free Kick PenaltyFootball Offside PenaltyFootball Palpably Unfair Act PenaltyFootball Pass Interference PenaltyFootball Penalties ListFootball Personal Foul PenaltyFootball Player Out Of Bounds On Kick PenaltyFootball Removal of the Helmet PenaltyFootball Roughing The Holder PenaltyFootball Roughing The Kicker PenaltyFootball Roughing The Passer PenaltyFootball Running Into The Kicker PenaltyFootball Sideline Infraction PenaltyFootball Striking, Kicking, or Kneeing an Opponent PenaltyFootball Taunting PenaltyFootball Too Many Men On Field PenaltyFootball Tripping PenaltyFootball Unnecessary Physical Contact With Game Official PenaltyFootball Unnecessary Roughness PenaltyFootball Unsportsmanlike Conduct PenaltyFootball Use Of Helmet PenaltyHigh School Football Penalties ReferenceHigh School Football Penalties Reference By CategoryNFL Football Penalties By CategoryNFL Football Penalties ReferencePlayersPlaysPositionsQuestionsRulesScrimmage DownsSkillsStatisticsStrategyTeam StaffThe FieldTrophies
  1. Home
  2. American Football
  3. Football Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball Penalty

Football Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball Penalty

Football Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball Penalty

An illegal kick on a loose ball is very similar to an illegal bat in football. Most often this event occurs during a fumble (live ball) or in special teams situations. Some punters are known to kick the ball out of bounds in order to prevent a touchdown for the opponent.


Definition

The rule states that no player shall kick either a loose ball or a ball that is in the possession of another player. This penalty is almost identical to the illegal bat, but includes while the ball is in the possession of another player. If the ball were to be batted or punched while in the possession of another player, the play would be considered an attempt at a strip.

Illegal kicks of a loose ball most often happen during fumbles. They are fairly rare but are almost always worth taking the penalty. For example, if a punter misjudges the snap and the ball goes into the endzone, he can kick it out and now allow the opponent to recover the ball, which would result in a touchdown. Instead, the penalty will be called in addition to a safety, only awarding the opponent 2 points. This penalty is often committed on purpose in order to keep the score closer even though the possession is lost.

The kicking of the loose ball also has to be deliberate in nature, or the penalty may not be called. For example, when players are fighting to recover a loose ball, a player may accidentally kick the ball upfield while trying to reach down and grab it. A penalty will not be called for an illegal kick because it was not intentional.

This penalty was put in place in order to not allow teams to gain a competitive advantage by possibly affecting the fair recovery of a loose football during a play. Giving both the offense and defense a chance to recover the ball with their hands on the ground is the goal. Kicking the ball to another teammate would give an advantage and manipulate the outcome of the play.

Result

An illegal kick of a loose ball will cost your team 10 yards.

PenaltyNFLNCAAHigh SchoolCFLAFL
Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball10 yards10 yards10 yardsN/AN/A

Penalty Signal

football penalty signal illegal kick of a loose ball

The penalty signal for an illegal kick of a loose ball is the same as an illegal bat, but has one added step. After pointing to one shoulder, the referee will point towards his toe in order to signify the illegal touch was in fact a kick by either the offense or defense.

Examples

  • A player intentionally kicks a loose ball in the field of play
  • A player intentionally kicks a ball while it is in the possession of another player

Similar Penalties To Illegal Kick Kicking Loose Ball