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Football 101Football 2 Minute WarningFootball 2 Point ConversionFootball BasicsFootball Break The PlaneFootball Challenge FlagFootball Coin TossFootball DefenseFootball Down SystemFootball Extra PointFootball Field GoalsFootball First Down LineFootball Game ClockFootball Game StructureFootball HalftimeFootball History And OriginsFootball Jersey Numbers ListFootball Kick Returns And ReturningFootball Live Vs. Dead BallFootball OffenseFootball OvertimeFootball Pass And PassingFootball Play ClockFootball PossessionFootball Quick GuideFootball SafetyFootball ScoringFootball Special TeamsFootball SubstitutionsFootball SummaryFootball Team StructureFootball TouchdownsFootball TriesFootball TurnoverPlay FootballWhat Is A Penalty In Football?

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10 Most Common Football InjuriesHow Does American Football Betting Work?How Does Football Betting Work?How Does Scoring Work In Football?Learn FootballNFL Playoff FormatNFL Pro Bowl FormatThe Top 10 Rules Of FootballTop 10 Football BooksTop 10 Football BrandsTop 10 Football MoviesTop 10 Football Video GamesTop 10 Most Iconic Moments In NFL HistoryTop 10 Richest Football PlayersTop 5 American Football Video GamesTop 5 Biggest College Football StadiumsTop 5 Ranked Mens Football Players Of All TimeTop 5 Super Bowl Half Time ShowsWhat Are The Rules Of American Football?What are the rules of football?

Bowl Games

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Coaching

Coaching FootballFootball Coaching TipsFootball Intersection PointFootball Play Sheet

College Football

College FootballCollege Football Bcs National Championship GameCollege Football Bowl Championship SeriesCollege Football Division 1College Football Division 1ACollege Football FBSCollege Football FCSCollege Football Overtime RulesNotre Dame Fighting Irish

Defensive Alignments

Football 3-3 DefenseFootball 3-4 DefenseFootball 3-4 Eagle DefenseFootball 3-4 Front DefenseFootball 4-3 DefenseFootball 4-3 Defense Vs. 3-4 DefenseFootball 4-3 Front DefenseFootball 4-4 DefenseFootball 46 DefenseFootball 5-2 DefenseFootball 5-3 DefenseFootball 5-4 DefenseFootball 6-2 DefenseFootball 6-3 DefenseFootball 7-2 DefenseFootball Cover Four DefenseFootball Cover One DefenseFootball Cover Three DefenseFootball Cover Two DefenseFootball Coverage TypesFootball Dallas 4-3 DefenseFootball Defensive AlignmentsFootball Dime DefenseFootball Four Across DefenseFootball Goal Line DefenseFootball Man To Man CoverageFootball Nickel 40 DefenseFootball Over Under 4-3 DefenseFootball Overloaded DefenseFootball Pass CoverageFootball Pass DefenseFootball Press CoverageFootball Pressure DefenseFootball Tampa Two DefenseFootball Zone Defense

Drills

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Equipment

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Flag Football

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Glossary

Football 1st HalfFootball 25-Second Play ClockFootball 2nd HalfFootball 40-Second Play ClockFootball Against The WindFootball AnnouncerFootball AudibleFootball Away TeamFootball Ball CarrierFootball Change Of PossessionFootball Choosing WindFootball Coffin CornerFootball CompletionFootball DeferFootball DeflectionFootball Down And DistanceFootball Down By ContactFootball Fair CatchFootball Forced FumbleFootball FumbleFootball GainFootball GapsFootball Glossary Of Terms And DefinitionsFootball Halftime ShowFootball Halftime SpeechFootball HandoffFootball Hidden Ball TrickFootball HikeFootball HoleFootball Home Field AdvantageFootball Home TeamFootball Instant ReplayFootball InterceptionsFootball Kicking TeamFootball LingoFootball Live ActionFootball Long SnapFootball Losing TeamFootball LossFootball Loss Of DownFootball Loss Of YardsFootball Muffed BallFootball Neutral ZoneFootball No GainFootball Open EndFootball PatFootball PeriodFootball Pick SixFootball PigskinFootball Piling OnFootball PocketFootball QuarterFootball ReceptionFootball RegulationFootball RushingFootball SackFootball SnapFootball Strong SideFootball TakeawayFootball The Kick Is GoodFootball TouchbackFootball Touchdown DanceFootball Touchdown ReturnFootball Visiting TeamFootball Weak SideFootball Winning TeamFootball With The Wind

How To

Football How ToFootball How To BackpedalFootball How To Ball ControlFootball How To Base BlockFootball How To BurstFootball How To Cut BlockFootball How To Drive BlockFootball How To Play Free SafetyFootball How To Punt A BallFootball How To Score PointsFootball How To Six O'Clock StepFootball How To SpiralFootball How To Stiff ArmFootball How To Strip The BallFootball How To TackleFootball How To Throw An NFL Ball

Kick Types

Football Drop KickFootball Free KickFootball Kick TypesFootball KickoffFootball Missed Field GoalFootball Onside KicksFootball Opening KickoffFootball PlacekickingFootball PuntsFootball Safety KickFootball Scrimmage Kick

Leagues

American Football LeagueCanadian Football LeagueFootball Leagues List

NFL Football

Football AFC EastFootball AFC NorthFootball AFC SouthFootball AFC WestFootball All Star GameFootball All Star TeamFootball American Football ConferenceFootball Division WinnersFootball East West Shrine GameFootball Hall Of FameFootball NFC EastFootball NFC NorthFootball NFC SouthFootball NFC WestFootball NFLFootball NFL Bye WeekFootball NFL Championship GameFootball NFL Collective Bargaining AgreementFootball NFL Conference ChampionsFootball NFL ConferencesFootball NFL DivisionsFootball NFL DraftFootball NFL Draft PicksFootball NFL Franchise PlayerFootball NFL Franchise TeamFootball NFL MondayFootball NFL OffseasonFootball NFL Overtime RulesFootball NFL Playoff RulesFootball NFL PostseasonFootball NFL PreseasonFootball NFL Regular SeasonFootball NFL SundayFootball NFL Team RosterFootball NFL ThursdayFootball NFL WaiversFootball National Football ConferenceFootball Playoff SystemFootball Rooney NFL RuleFootball SalariesFootball Salary CapFootball Scouting CombineFootball Senior BowlFootball Super Bowl CommercialsFootball Super Bowl RulesFootball Vince LombardiFootball Wild CardFootball Wild Card TeamFootball Win Loss RecordWhat Is The Super Bowl In NFL Football?

NFL Teams

Arizona CardinalsAtlanta FalconsBaltimore RavensBuffalo BillsCarolina PanthersChicago BearsCincinnati BengalsCleveland BrownsDallas CowboysDenver BroncosDetroit LionsFootball Accrued SeasonFootball NFL Teams ListGreen Bay PackersHouston TexansIndianapolis ColtsJacksonville JaguarsKansas City ChiefsLos Angeles ChargersLos Angeles RamsMiami DolphinsMinnesota VikingsNew England PatriotsNew Orleans SaintsNew York GiantsNew York JetsOakland RaidersPhiladelphia EaglesPittsburgh SteelersSan Francisco 49ersSeattle SeahawksTampa Bay BuccaneersTennessee TitansWashington Redskins

Offensive Formations

Football Double Wing FormationFootball Full House BackfieldFootball Hurry Up OffenseFootball I-FormationFootball Offensive FormationsFootball Offset I-FormationFootball Pistol FormationFootball Power OffenseFootball Pro Set FormationFootball Run And Shoot OffenseFootball Shotgun FormationFootball Single Wing FormationFootball Split Back FormationFootball Spread OffenseFootball West Coast OffenseFootball Wildcat FormationFootball Wishbone Offense

Officials

Football Back JudgeFootball BoxmanFootball Chain Gang And CrewFootball Down JudgeFootball Field JudgeFootball Line JudgeFootball Officials And Referee TypesFootball Side Judge

Pass Types

Football Bullet ThrowFootball Complete PassFootball Incomplete PassFootball Juggled PassFootball LateralFootball Pass TypesFootball Possession PassFootball Screen PassFootball Seam PassFootball Timing PassFootball Touch PassFootball Underneath Pass

Penalties

Football Chop BlockFootball Clipping PenaltyFootball Defensive Delay Of Game PenaltyFootball Defensive Holding PenaltyFootball Defensive Offside PenaltyFootball Defensive Pass Interference PenaltyFootball Delay Of Game PenaltyFootball Delay Of Kickoff PenaltyFootball Disqualification PenaltyFootball Double Foul PenaltyFootball Encroachment PenaltyFootball Facemask PenaltyFootball Fair Catch Interference PenaltyFootball False Start PenaltyFootball Horse Collar PenaltyFootball Illegal Bat PenaltyFootball Illegal Blindside Block PenaltyFootball Illegal Block Above The Waist PenaltyFootball Illegal Contact PenaltyFootball Illegal Crackback PenaltyFootball Illegal Cut 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 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 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 Pass Interference PenaltyFootball Penalties ListFootball Personal Foul PenaltyFootball Player Out Of Bounds On Kick PenaltyFootball Roughing The Holder PenaltyFootball Roughing The Kicker PenaltyFootball Roughing The Passer PenaltyFootball Running Into The Kicker PenaltyFootball Taunting PenaltyFootball Too Many Men On Field PenaltyFootball Tripping PenaltyFootball Unnecessary Roughness PenaltyFootball Unsportsmanlike Conduct PenaltyFootball Use Of Helmet Penalty

Players

Aaron Rodgers Bio And FactsBrett Favre Bio And FactsCam Newton Bio And FactsDrew Brees Bio And FactsJerry Rice Bio And FactsJim Brown Bio And FactsJim Thorpe Bio And FactsJoe Montana Bio And FactsLawrence Taylor BiographyPatrick Mahomes Bio And FactsPeyton Manning Bio And FactsRandy Moss Bio And FactsRed Grange BiographyRussell Wilson Bio And FactsTom Brady Bio And Facts

Plays

Football 5-Yard HitchFootball Bang Bang PlayFootball BlitzFootball BombFootball BootlegFootball Bubble ScreenFootball Bump And RunFootball Comeback Pass PatternFootball Corner BlitzFootball CounterFootball Curl Pass PatternFootball DrawFootball FlatFootball Fly Pass PatternFootball Flying WedgeFootball Hail MaryFootball Hook Pass PatternFootball Off Tackle RunsFootball Out PatternFootball Pass PlaysFootball Pass RoutesFootball Pass RushFootball Passing PatternsFootball Pick Pass PatternFootball Pick PlayFootball Play ActionFootball Play FakeFootball PlaysFootball Post Pass PatternFootball Quarterback DrawFootball Quarterback SneakFootball Quick KickFootball Quick ReleaseFootball ReverseFootball RouteFootball Route TreeFootball Running PlaysFootball Slant Pass PatternFootball Slant RunFootball Square Cut Pass PatternFootball Statue Of Liberty PlayFootball Streak Pass PatternFootball StuntFootball SweepFootball Swing Pass PatternFootball Triple StretchFootball VeerFootball Vertical StretchFootball Wall ReturnFootball Wedge ReturnFootball Zone Blitz

Positions

Football BlockerFootball CenterFootball CornerbackFootball Defensive BackFootball Defensive EndFootball Defensive LineFootball Defensive LinemanFootball Defensive TackleFootball Dime BackFootball Down LinemanFootball Elephant EndFootball FlankerFootball Free SafetyFootball Free Safety Vs. Strong SafetiesFootball Front SevenFootball FullbackFootball Fullback Vs. HalfbackFootball GuardFootball GunnerFootball HalfbackFootball HolderFootball Injured ReserveFootball JammerFootball KickerFootball Kicker TypesFootball Kickoff ReturnerFootball Left TackleFootball LinebackerFootball Linebacker TypesFootball Long SnapperFootball Mike LinebackerFootball NickelbackFootball Nose TackleFootball Offensive BackfieldFootball Offensive LineFootball Offensive LinemanFootball Offensive TackleFootball Pass Rushing EndFootball Personal ProtectorFootball PlacekickerFootball Position AbbreviationsFootball Positions GuideFootball Positions ListFootball Positions Ranked By ImportanceFootball Punt ReturnerFootball Punt RusherFootball PunterFootball QuarterbackFootball Receiver TypesFootball Receiving TeamFootball Return SpecialistFootball Right TackleFootball Running BackFootball Running Back TypesFootball Sam LinebackerFootball SecondaryFootball Slot ReceiverFootball SnapperFootball Split End ReceiverFootball Strong SafetyFootball TailbackFootball Tight EndFootball True LinebackerFootball Wide ReceiversFootball Willy LinebackerFootball Wingback

Questions

Can A Girl Play Football?Can Quarterbacks Run With The Ball?Does A Touchdown Count As A First Down In Football?Football QuestionsHow Are Field Goals Measured In Football?How Long Does An American Football Game Last?How Long Is An NFL Football Field?How Many Chances Does The Offense Get To Reach A First Down In Football?How Many Downs Are There In Football?How Many Players Are There In An American Football Team?How Many Points Is A Blocked Field Goal Return In Football?How Many Points Is A Field Goal Worth In Football?How Many Points Is A Kick In Football?How Many Points Is A Safety Worth In Football?How Many Points Is A Touchdown Worth In Football?How Many Quarterbacks Are On A Football Team?How Many Steps Are In A Field Goal In Football?How Many Yards Are In A First Down In Football?How Many Yards Is The End Zone In Football?How Many Yards Wide Is A Football Field?Is The Quarterback The Captain Of The Team In Football?What Are Skilled Positions In Football?What Are Some Of The Lesser Known Rules Of Football?What Are The Dimensions Of An American Football Field?What Are The Most Common Penalties In NFL Football?What Are The Positions On A Football Team?What Are The Various Defensive Positions In American Football?What Counts As A Tackle In Football?What Does A Cornerback Do In Football?What Does A Field Goal Mean In Football?What Does A Guard Do In Football?What Does A Linebacker Do In Football?What Does A Tight End Do In Football?What Does A Wide Receiver Do In Football?What Does Punt Mean In A Football Game?What Happens After A Touchdown In Football?What Happens If A Wide Receiver Misses The Catch In Football?What Is A Touchdown In Football?What Is An Incomplete Pass Versus A Complete Pass In Football?What Is Justin Tucker's Longest Field Goal?What Is The Blue Line In Football?What Is The Easiest And Hardest Position To Play In Football?What Is The Longest Field Goal Kicked In College Football?What Is The Longest Field Goal Kicked In High School Football?What Is The Most Obscure Rule In Ncaa College Football?What Is The Yellow Line In Football?What It Means To Be A Quarterback In Football?What Makes A Good Wide Receiver In Football?What Position Hikes The Ball In Football?When A Defensive Player Catches A Pass In Football?When Is An Onside Kick No Longer Recoverable By The Kicking Team In Football?When Was The First Touchdown Scored In NFL Football?Where Is Football Most Popular?Who Catches The Ball In Football?Who Created Football In America?Who Is The Best QB In The NFL Football?Who Is The Best Running Back In NFL Football?Who Is The Best Team In American Football?Who Is The First NFL Quarterback To Win 5 Super Bowl Rings In Football?Who Kicks The Ball In Football?Who Protects The Quarterback In Football?Who Was The Heaviest NFL Football Player Ever?

Rules

Football 5-Yard Bump RuleFootball Backward Pass RulesFootball Catching RulesFootball Downed Player RulesFootball Eligibility RulesFootball Eligible Receiver RulesFootball End Zone RulesFootball Forward Pass RulesFootball Forward Progress RulesFootball Pushing RulesFootball Rules And RegulationsFootball Team Roster RulesFootball Timeouts

Scrimmage Downs

Football 1st And 10Football 1st DownFootball 1st Down LineFootball 2nd And 1Football 2nd And 10Football 2nd And GoalFootball 2nd DownFootball 3rd And 1Football 3rd And 10Football 3rd And GoalFootball 3rd And InchesFootball 3rd And LongFootball 3rd DownFootball 4th And 1Football 4th And 10Football 4th And GoalFootball 4th And InchesFootball 4th And LongFootball 4th DownFootball CountFootball Down MarkerFootball Drive MarkerFootball Scrimmage DownsFootball Turnover On DownsWhy Do They Call It First And Goal In American Football?

Skills And Techniques

Football 2-Point StanceFootball 3-Point StanceFootball 4-Point StanceFootball Angle TackleFootball Blindside TackleFootball BlockingFootball Bull RushFootball Crackback BlockFootball Cut Off Block And Angle BlockingFootball Dip And Rip TechniqueFootball Directional KickingFootball Dive Or BlastFootball Down StanceFootball EscapabilityFootball ForkliftFootball Knockout TackleFootball Middle Field Goal BlockFootball Reach BlockFootball ScrambleFootball Short Arming The BallFootball Skills And TechniquesFootball SlideFootball Slide BlockFootball StanceFootball Stand Up StanceFootball Swim TechniqueFootball Trap BlockFootball Two Way Players

Statistics

Football 3rd Down ConversionFootball Conversion PercentageFootball Hang TimeFootball Passer Rating FormulaFootball Percentage Play And KickFootball Red Zone Scoring PercentageFootball Rushing YardsFootball StatisticsFootball Third Down Conversion PercentageFootball Yards Per Rushing Attempt

Strategy

Football 3 And OutFootball Clock ManagementFootball Double FakeFootball Double TeamFootball Field Goal RangeFootball Field Goal Target LineFootball Field PositionFootball Formations ListFootball Fourth Down StrategiesFootball Ground GameFootball HuddlesFootball Icing The KickerFootball IsolationFootball Man On Man BlockingFootball Offensive DrivesFootball One On One Pass RushFootball Option PlayFootball Passing GameFootball Passing ProgressionsFootball Passing ReadsFootball PullingFootball Roll OutFootball Running GameFootball Running LanesFootball SchemeFootball Short Yardage SituationFootball Spread Punt FormationFootball Stemming AroundFootball StrategyFootball Two Gap StyleFootball Zone Block

Team Staff

Football AgentFootball Assistant CoachFootball CoordinatorFootball Defensive CoordinatorFootball Defensive Line CoachFootball General ManagerFootball Head CoachFootball Linebacker CoachFootball Offensive CoordinatorFootball Offensive Line CoachFootball OwnerFootball Practice SquadFootball Quarterback CoachFootball Restricted And Unrestricted Free AgentFootball ScoutsFootball Secondary CoachFootball Special Teams CoachFootball Special Teams CoordinatorFootball Strength CoachFootball Team DoctorFootball Team SquadsFootball Team Staff

The Field

Football 50 Yard LineFootball Artificial TurfFootball Bench AreaFootball Boundary LinesFootball CrossbarFootball Defensive BackfieldFootball End LineFootball End ZoneFootball Field DimensionsFootball Field LineFootball Field Of PlayFootball Field PartsFootball Goal LineFootball Goal PostFootball Green ZoneFootball GridironFootball Hash MarksFootball In BoundsFootball Line Of ScrimmageFootball Midfield TerritoryFootball Out Of BoundsFootball PylonsFootball Red ZoneFootball Restraining LineFootball SidelineFootball The FieldFootball UprightsFootball Yard Lines

Trophies

Football Davey O'Brien AwardFootball Heisman TrophyFootball Lombardi AwardFootball Trophies And Awards ListFootball Vince Lombardi Trophy
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The Top 10 Rules Of Football

Table of Contents

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What is football?

football rules

Football is considered to be the most popular sport in the United States and is growing immensely internationally. The tough, hard hitting, highly athletic, and strategic sport consists of two teams attempting to throw, catch, and run the ball into the other teams endzone without getting tackled. The two most popular leagues are the National Football league, and NCAA Division 1 football. The NFL is the professional league while the NCAA is a collegiate level league. NFL rosters consist of 53 players while college teams can have up to 125 players. In both leagues players have specific positions falling under special teams, defense, offense, or a combination of both occasionally. The NFL season consists of 16 regular season games while the college schedule is a little more complicated as some teams play an extra game than others. In the NFL, there are two conferences, AFC & NFC, which each consist of 4 divisions of 4 teams. The team with the best record in each division advances to the playoffs along with the two best records of teams who didn't finish their division in first place. The sports ultimate prize is called the Super Bowl and is played yearly during the first weekend of February. The championship game is an enormous event watched by millions of viewers yearly. For college football, the top four teams, voted on by a committee, play in a 4 team bracket single elimination system where two teams eventually compete for the championship.

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What are the top 10 rules of football?

  1. Catch Rule
  2. Fumble Rule
  3. Overtime Rules
  4. Downs Rules
  5. Replay Rules
  6. Point after Conversion Rules
  7. Safety Rules
  8. Targeting Rule
  9. Touchback Rules
  10. Onside Kicking Rules
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1. Catch Rule

NFL Rule:

What is a catch? This exact question has been debated for years by fans, coaches, players, and officials. In the NFL, a catch is when a player has possession of the ball while having two feet in bounds or any body part other than the hands. The ball can not be dislodged or moved as a result of contact with the ground. A big point of emphasis from NFL officials is that a player must 'maintain possession through the entire process of the catch'. This means that a player must hang onto the ball when getting hit by a player or hitting the ground.

NCAA Rule:

The college catch rule is the same in every regard apart from the feet in bounds. In college, receivers only need to have one foot in bounds while possessing the ball.

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2. Fumble Rule

A fumble occurs when a player is deemed to have possession of the ball and then proceeds to lose possession of the ball before being tackled and deemed down. A player is down in the NFL when any body part except for the hands hits the ground as a result of a tackle or they fall and are touched by a defensive player while on the ground. In the NCAA a player is down if any body part apart from the hands hits the ground regardless of them being touched or not. Fumbles can occur for several different reasons, but usually occur when a defensive player either stips the ball out of the offensive players hands or hits the offensive player with a hard hit causing the player to lose possession of the football. When a player fumbles the ball, the team that gains possession of the ball and is tackled or touched while on the ground is deemed possession. A fumble is an example of a turnover which occurs when the offensive team loses possession of the ball by either fumbling or throwing an interception.

football fumble rule
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3. Overtime Rules

Overtime occurs when two teams are tied at the end of regulation. The NCAA and NFL have very different procedures for overtime.

NFL Rule:

When an NFL game ends regulation in a tie during the regular season, the two teams play a 10 minute overtime period. To decide who gets the ball first, there is a coin flip similar to the beginning of the game. If the team who receives the ball scores a touchdown on their first drive the game is over. If they do not score, the other team has the opportunity to win the game with any score. If the the team who received the ball first scores a field goal, the other team has the opportunity to have a possession and tie the game with a field goal of their own, win the game with a touchdown, or lose if they fail to score any points. If each team possesses the ball and the score remains tied, the next team to score wins the game. If the score remains tied at the end of the overtime period, the game ends in a tie. In the playoffs however, they continue to another overtime period with the next score winning the game. In the event that the second team to have possession is down by a field goal in a playoff overtime game and the time runs out while they are still on their initial drive, they will continue to another overtime giving that team the opportunity to finish their drive.

NCAA Rule:

When a college football game ends regulation in a tie, the two teams are each given a possession at the opponents 25 yard line. A coin toss determines who possesses the ball first and which side the teams will play on. If the score remains tied after the first overtime, they proceed to a second overtime with the same format. Following the end of the second overtime, teams who score a touchdown must go for a 2 point conversion. If the game remains tied for 4 overtime periods, teams will start from the opponents two yard line and have to run two point conversion plays until one team scores and the other does not.

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4. Downs Rules

In football, offenses aim to score a touchdown every drive. Defenses aim to stop the offense from doing so. Down markers are imperative parts of football as they give the defense a chance to stop the offense without giving up points. If there were no downs system and the offense had every chance to score, it would be very challenging for the defense to get the ball back to their offense without giving up points. Therefore, every 10 yards on an NFL and college football field is a first down. From wherever the offense starts their drive, 10 yards from that spot is the first down marker. If a team fails to get the ball past the first down marker 4 times in a row, the other team takes over possession of the ball. If a measurement is very close, the referees come out with chains to measure if the ball crossed the first down line or not.

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5. Replay Rules

Replay has become more and more prevalent as the years have gone on in football. The importance of replay is to make sure the refs on the field are not missing anything or making mistakes. Until this year, penalties were not reviewable. As a result of a missed call in the NFC championship, pass interference is now reviewable. Other penalties still remain unreviewable. The most common plays reviewed are spot of the ball, catch v. no catch, fumble v. no fumble. Coaches are given two challenges each game in which they can use at any time apart from when there is less than two minutes in the 2nd quarter and 4th quarter. Everything is reviewed by officials in a booth under the two minute warnings of the 2nd and 4th quarters. Regardless of whether the coach is correct on their first challenge, they have another challenge to use if they want. If a coach challenges twice and is incorrect both times however, he or she has no challenges for the remainder of the game. If a coach gets their second challenge right, he or she is awarded another challenge. A challenge is signaled by a coach throwing a red flag onto the field and discussing with the refs what they want them to review. If the play is deemed challengeable, the ref will proceed to look at replays and deem whether the call should be overturned. The terminology they use when announcing the result of a replay is important as all replays must show conclusive evidence in order for the call on the field to be overturned. When a ref says the call on the field is confirmed, that means that he or she saw video evidence and deemed that the call on the field was 100% correct. If a ref says the call on the field stands, that means he or she did not see enough video evidence to overturn the call, but also did not see enough evidence to confidently say they were 100% correct. Lastly, when a call is overturned the refs admit to a mistake and whatever the play was is changed to the correct call. football replay rules

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6. Point-after Conversion Rules

NFL Rule:

After a team scores a touchdown they have the option to attempt a two point conversion or kick an extra point known as a PAT (point after touchdown.) The more conventional option is the PAT. The point after is a field goal from the 15 yard line (making it a 32 yard field goal: end zones are 10 yards and the placeholder is 7 yards from the line of scrimmage). If kicked successfully through the uprights of the field goal goal posts the team is awarded 1 point. If teams decide to go for the two point conversion, they run an offensive play from the two yard line and attempt to get the ball into the endzone by either running or catching the ball in the boundaries of the endzone. If completed successfully, the team awarded two points. In the event an extra point is blocked, or a two point conversion results in an interception or a fumble, the other team can recover the ball and run with it across the field into the other end zone. If this occurs the team who returned the ball is awarded 2 points.

NCAA Rule:

The same rules apply for the college football point after attempts and two point conversions apart from the distance of the extra point field goal. In college, kickers attempt the point after from the 3 yard line (making it a 20 yard field goal: endzones are 10 yards and the placeholder is 7 yards from the line of scrimmage). Placeholder is the terminology for the player receiving the snap and setting the ball up for the kicker to attempt the field goal.

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7. Safety Rules

A safety occurs when an offensive team is tackled in their own end zone or commits a holding penalty in their endzone. The result of a safety is the defensive team being awarded two points and receiving the ball immediately after from a free kick punt. Contrary to popular belief, it is possible for there to be a one point safety in football. Although extremely rare, (it has never happened in the NFL and only happened a few times in college football) it is possible. A one point safety occurs when a team is either attempting a two point conversion or kicking an extra point and the defensive team blocks, recovers a fumble, or intercepts a pass and proceeds to run back into their own end zone and get tackled by the team attempting the point after kick or two point conversion. The player must have recovered the fumble, intercepted the pass, or recovered the blocked kicked outside of their own end zone before running back into their enzone for it to be a one point safety.

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8. Targeting Rule

Football can be a very dangerous sport when players incorrectly tackle. The targeting rule was instilled to prevent players from suffering critical head and neck injuries as a result of another player tracking them incorrectly. The NFL and NCAA have similar definitions of targeting, but the NCAA bans two specific kinds of hits while the nfl only bans one. These penalties are personal fouls resulting in a loss or gain of 15 yards depending which team committed the offense. Additionally players are subject to ejection at both levels. NFL players can also face fines determined by the NFL front office.

NFL Rule:

If a player goes into a tackle or hit leading with the crown of their helmet they will receive a targeting penalty.

NCAA Rule:

Bans any tackle in which there is 'forcible contact' to the head or neck area of a defenseless player as well as leading with the crown of the helmet while tackling. The difficulty in making these calls is determining what a defenseless player means. In the eyes of the NCAA, in summary, a defenseless player is someone who has no chance at all to react to a hit.

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9. Touchback Rule

A touchback occurs on either a kickoff or a punt. A touchback on a punt occurs when the ball is punted into or out of the back of the endzone. The second the ball touches any part of the endzone it is deemed a touchback and the receiving team starts their offensive drive on their own 20 yard line. A touchback occurs on a kickoff when the ball is kicked out of the back of the endzone or a player catches the ball or picks up the ball in the endzone and takes a knee. Players can also call for fair catches on a kickoff while in the end zone resulting in a touchback. A touchback on a kickoff results in the offensive team starting their possession on their own 25 yard line. The rules are identical for both leagues apart from the fair catch part. If a college football player waives for a fair catch inside his own 25 yard line, the play is deemed dead and the ball is placed at the receiving teams 25 yard line to start their offensive possession. If an NFL player were to call for a fair catch on a kickoff inside of their 25 yard line, wherever they catch the ball would be the starting point for their next drive. The NCAA instilled this rule to address the issues of players getting injured at an extremely high rate on kickoffs.

football touchback rule
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10. Onside Kicking Rule

An onside kick occurs when a team decides to try and recover their own kick on a kickoff. In order to do so, the ball must travel 10 yards before being recovered or hit an opposing player. The kicking team is not allowed to have a running start and must wait until the ball is kicked to run past the yard line in which the ball is being kicked from. If the ball is kicked out of bounds, the kicking team receives a penalty and the receiving team takes possession of the football. Anyone including the kicker is eligible to recover the kick as long as the two rules stated above are followed. If a player runs past the ball before the ball is kicked an offsides penalty is called and the ball is moved back 5 yards for another kick.

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