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Old 12-13-2019, 09:44 PM
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Two NFL Football Q's from a Novice


So, there were a few plays in last night's Ravens game that I did not understand. Maybe someone can explain since I have no one to ask.

a) I believe in the 3rd Q, the Jets punted. As the ball followed its downward trajectory, the ball might have brushed a Ravens' shoulder. (It was tough to say.) The ball dropped to the ground and a Jet quickly tackled the loose ball. The local officials appealed to NY officials who ruled the ball did not touch the Raven player. So, what all happened here?

Based on this the ruling, didn't the Jet who tackled the ball claim possession of a loose ball for the Jets? Yet, the Ravens were given possession of the ball. Now, consider if the ruling had gone the other way: Had the ball touched the Raven, wouldn't that equate to the Ravens touching the ball and therefore taking possession of the ball? (As you can tell, I am weak on the finer points of the game.)

b) At some point in the second half, on an ordinary play with the Jets on offense, the QB threw the ball to a receiver who caught the ball, and he proceeded to run. But, he soon lost his footing, fell to the ground, rolled in a crouch (as I recall), and attempted to rise and keep running (if only for a step or two). But, once he touches the ground, isn't that the end of the play? Can he get up and keep running, or was he hoping the refs didn't see?

c) I do not understand the advantage of the onside kick. The Jets did this twice, back to back in the 4th Q, if I recall correctly. It seems the offense kicked the ball (in a low kick) down field to push the opposing team down field, right? But, is it possible for a Jets receiver to outrun the kick to claim possession of the ball? And, why / when is it worth forfeiting the typical four downs for this maneuver?

Thanks in advance, football fans!
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:00 PM
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Quick answers:

a) When a team punts the ball, they may not regain possession of the ball on that play unless the ball first touches a member of the receiving team.

If the ball had, indeed, touched a Raven, the Jets could have recovered the ball -- though they would not have been able to advance the ball; it would have been a dead ball at that spot, and the Jets would have regained possession, with a new first down at that point.

But, as a Raven had *not* touched the ball, when a Jets player grabbed the ball, that, too, caused a dead ball at that spot...but, that simply ended the punt play, and the Ravens gained possession at that spot.

b) In the NFL, if a ballcarrier winds up on the ground, as long as he isn't actually touched by a member of the other team while he is on the ground (or contact with an opposing player had forced him to the ground), he isn't "down," and can get back up and continue running.

Note that this is different from, say, college ball -- in college football, if a ballcarrier goes to the ground, that ends the play, even if he was not touched.

c) The "advantage" of the onside kick is to give the kicking team a chance to recover the ball. On a kickoff, the kick is a live ball, and members of either team may recover it. Even if the ball is kicked 60+ yards downfield (as it usually is on a kickoff), members of the kicking team *could* recover the ball -- though, realistically, there's no way that they would be able to run 60 yards downfield in time.

Onside kicks are nearly always attempted late in a game, by a team that's behind, in order to try to regain possession of the ball, and thus try to score again. The odds of their success aren't very high (historically, about 20%), though, with rules changes that the NFL made in order to make kickoffs safer, they're even harder to recover now.

Also, just FYI, on an onside kick, the kicking team may not attempt to recover the ball until it's traveled at least 10 yards, though the receiving team can recover it at any point. So, usually, when you see an onside kick, the kicker isn't trying to kick it much further than 10 yards -- he's trying to put it in a place where his teammates have a chance to recover it before the other team can.

And, yes, you're right, if the onside kick fails (that is, if the receiving team recovers the kick), the kicking team has probably just given the other team very good field position. That's why it's not attempted often unless the kicking team is in dire straits.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-13-2019 at 10:04 PM.
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
Even if the ball is kicked 60+ yards downfield (as it usually is on a kickoff), members of the kicking team *could* recover the ball -- though, realistically, there's no way that they would be able to run 60 yards downfield in time.
This has happened a couple of times before in the NFL, both times because of a mental error by the receiving team.

First time was a few years ago, Bills-Jets game. The Jets kicked the ball deep downfield but the Bills, for whatever reason, just stared at the ball bouncing about on the field for a few moments without doing anything. Then suddenly realization hit them and they tried to grab the ball but it was too late, a Jets player had already snatched it by then. It was in the Bills' end zone, so it was a touchdown, I believe.

Second time, also a few years ago; Cowboys-Eagles. The Cowboys kicked the ball deep downfield but the Eagles' kick returner just watched the ball bounce (there seemed to be some confusion between two Eagles as to which of them was supposed to take the ball) and the Cowboys were able to arrive downfield by then and get possession at the Eagles' 15-yard line.
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
This has happened a couple of times before in the NFL, both times because of a mental error by the receiving team.
Exactly. Every once in a while, one sees the kickoff returner suffer a brain fart, and forget that it's a live ball (unlike on a punt).
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:31 PM
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Exactly. Every once in a while, one sees the kickoff returner suffer a brain fart, and forget that it's a live ball (unlike on a punt).
Depending on the kickoff, the returner might also be waiting and hoping that the ball will bounce out of bounds, which would give the receiving team possession at the 40, but the ball then fails to cooperate.
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:31 PM
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a. In a punting situation, if the receiving team does not cleanly field the ball or if the ball inadvertently touches a member of the receiving team, the ball is considered a live ball and either team can recover it. The Jets player pounced on the ball because he thought it had touched a Ravens player.

The other reason a member of the kicking team would recover the ball is if the punt bounced on the turf (without the receiving team touching it) and the bounce caused the ball to move towards the kicking teams goal line. In this case the kicking team "downs" the ball and the receiving team takes possession where the kicking team touches/downs it.

b. In the NFL a player is only down as a result of contact by an opposing player. If a ball carrier trips and falls and is never touched by a defender, they may get up and continue to run. There are some exceptions to protect quarterbacks. This is different than college ball in a player is down when either a knee or any other part of the body except a hand touches the turf. There is no down by contact in college ball.

c. In any kickoff situation the ball becomes a live ball after it has travelled 10 yards; either team can recover. The idea behind an inside kuck is to block members of the receiving team and/or have members of the kicking team beat the receivers to the ball and recover it after it traveled 10.0001 yards.

Last edited by bernardch; 12-13-2019 at 10:35 PM. Reason: Multiply Ninja'd
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Old 12-13-2019, 10:34 PM
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With the NFL onsides kick advantage reduced to 10% I predict some kicker is going to come up with some sort of end-to-end knuckleball kick that can be squibbed slightly further down the field than an onside. The idea is it will be difficult for the receiving team to handle increasing the likelihood of bobbles, weird bounces and fumbles that can possibly be recovered by the kicking team, down the field further, to boot.

This would force the receiving team, not knowing if they are getting an onsides kick or this “wobble” kick to adjust accordingly, allowing the kicking team of possibly sneaking in an onsides kick now and then.

The NFL adjusts its rules, innovators eventually find a way to make up for it.


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Old 12-13-2019, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by russian heel View Post
With the NFL onsides kick advantage reduced to 10% I predict some kicker is going to come up with some sort of end-to-end knuckleball kick that can be squibbed slightly further down the field than an onside. The idea is it will be difficult for the receiving team to handle increasing the likelihood of bobbles, weird bounces and fumbles that can possibly be recovered by the kicking team, down the field further, to boot.

This would force the receiving team, not knowing if they are getting an onsides kick or this ďwobbleĒ kick to adjust accordingly, allowing the kicking team of possibly sneaking in an onsides kick now and then.

The NFL adjusts its rules, innovators eventually find a way to make up for it.
I agree; someone (either a kicker or a special teams coach) will figure out a strategy to improve the now-terrible odds for onside kicks. They aren't meant to be easy to convert, but I think everyone realizes that the current conversion percentage is simply *too* low. If no one innovates their way into a solution, the league may tweak the kickoff rules again.
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Old 12-13-2019, 11:12 PM
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Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
In the NFL, if a ballcarrier winds up on the ground ...
In the interests of precision, it's worth noting the NFL's wording:
Quote:
Originally Posted by NFL Rules
If, after contact by an opponent, any part of a runnerís leg above the ankle or any part of his arm above the wrist touches the ground, the runner is down.

(Which raises this question: would a runner who was knocked onto his butt, then bounced to his feet not be down? Or is the butt for these purposes considered part of a leg?)
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Old 12-13-2019, 11:20 PM
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(Which raises this question: would a runner who was knocked onto his butt, then bounced to his feet not be down? Or is the butt for these purposes considered part of a leg?)
Butt, back, hip, chest, and head would all also count as being down. I think that the rule you quote above is to make it clear that if your hand (or, of course, your feet) touch the ground, that doesn't qualify as being "down."
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Old 12-13-2019, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by bernardch View Post
In the NFL a player is only down as a result of contact by an opposing player.
I thought there was a rule that said a player can intentionally go to ground and end the play, even if no opposing player has touched him. It's rarely used but in some situations it's better to end the play and guarantee possession of the ball rather than try to keep moving and take a chance of losing possession.
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Old 12-13-2019, 11:34 PM
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I thought there was a rule that said a player can intentionally go to ground and end the play, even if no opposing player has touched him. It's rarely used but in some situations it's better to end the play and guarantee possession of the ball rather than try to keep moving and take a chance of losing possession.
Yeah, defenders do this sometimes after having intercepted a ball; they'll slide to the turf. (see Packers safety in 2014 NFC title game against Seattle, Colts cornerback in 2006 AFC title game against New England).

And, of course, quarterbacks take a knee all the time.
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Old 12-13-2019, 11:39 PM
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Yeah, defenders do this sometimes after having intercepted a ball; they'll slide to the turf. (see Packers safety in 2014 NFC title game against Seattle, Colts cornerback in 2006 AFC title game against New England).

And, of course, quarterbacks take a knee all the time.
Yup. If a player intentionally takes a knee, or otherwise clearly intentionally gives himself up and goes to the ground, the play is blown dead.
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Old 12-14-2019, 12:01 AM
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Onside kicks are nearly always attempted late in a game, by a team that's behind, in order to try to regain possession of the ball, and thus try to score again. The odds of their success aren't very high (historically, about 20%), though, with rules changes that the NFL made in order to make kickoffs safer, they're even harder to recover now.
Unless youíre Younghoe Koo and can recover it every time.
https://www.insidehook.com/daily_bri...he-onside-kick
If only he could kick field goals.
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Old 12-14-2019, 01:00 AM
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c. In any kickoff situation the ball becomes a live ball after it has travelled 10 yards; either team can recover.
Is the kickoff a live ball as soon as it goes ten yards, or does it have to touch the ground first, too? Onside kicks are always along the ground, with the hope that they'll take a high bounce so the kicking team can recover. I always wondered why no team tried a kick that would go high in the air (like a chip shot in golf) so they could get in position to catch it before it came down.
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Old 12-14-2019, 01:05 AM
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Is the kickoff a live ball as soon as it goes ten yards, or does it have to touch the ground first, too?
It's a bit more nuanced than that:
- For the receiving team, it's a live ball, and can be recovered, from the moment it's kicked.
- For the kicking team, while it's a live ball the moment it's kicked, they cannot legally *recover* the ball until it's traveled upfield 10 yards -- that is, if it's kicked from the 35 yard line, the offense cannot legally recover the ball until it reaches the 45 yard line.
- The ball is "live" once it's kicked, and does not have to touch the ground to become live.

And, onside kicks aren't necessarily *always* on the ground, though that's typical (with, as you note, the kicking team usually trying for a big hop into the air). Another strategy for onside kicks is for the kicker to pop the ball up into the air, just a bit longer than 10 yards downfield, with the hopes that a teammate can run under it and snatch it out of the air before a member of the receiving team can.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-14-2019 at 01:08 AM.
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Old 12-14-2019, 01:12 AM
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- For the receiving team, it's a live ball, and can be recovered, from the moment it's kicked.
Too late to edit:

Note that this means that, although the receiving team can be no closer than 10 yards from the yard line from which the ball is kicked up until the moment of the kick, they do not need to *stay* that far back. They can, and do, move forward once the ball is kicked, and they can recover the ball before it travels 10 yards.

Also: the reason the "bouncing on the ground" onside kick has become the norm is, I think, because it's harder to place a kick in the air (the "chip shot") where you want it, without it going out of bounds, which gives the receiving team the ball at that point.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-14-2019 at 01:15 AM.
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Old 12-14-2019, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
Is the kickoff a live ball as soon as it goes ten yards, or does it have to touch the ground first, too? Onside kicks are always along the ground, with the hope that they'll take a high bounce so the kicking team can recover. I always wondered why no team tried a kick that would go high in the air (like a chip shot in golf) so they could get in position to catch it before it came down.
I did see an instance where the kicking team grabbed the ball in the air. It was called back because it had only gone nine yards, but you could possible manage it with the right kicker kicking at an angle and a fast runner.
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Old 12-14-2019, 03:21 PM
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I always wondered why no team tried a kick that would go high in the air (like a chip shot in golf) so they could get in position to catch it before it came down.
Ohio State did exactly that in its game against Maryland last month. It was about as perfectly executed by the kicker as could be.

(Skip to 00:43 for the best view of it)

Last edited by Velocity; 12-14-2019 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 12-14-2019, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
Also: the reason the "bouncing on the ground" onside kick has become the norm is, I think, because it's harder to place a kick in the air (the "chip shot") where you want it, without it going out of bounds, which gives the receiving team the ball at that point.
I don't believe this to be true. According to Wiki, the receiving team may call for a fair catch on a kickoff. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_catch) I know not to trust Wiki completely, but this one seems so specific I do believe it. Therefore if the kicker tries to pop the ball into the air, a receiver could signal for a fair catch and no one on the kicking team would be allowed to catch the ball in the air "interfering with the fair catch".

A fair catch no longer applies once the ball hits the ground. I believe that is the reason the ball is usually bounced. In the incident cited in the Ohio State game, probably nobody signaled for a fair catch. They should have if gaining possession was of primary importance.
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Old 12-14-2019, 04:08 PM
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I don't believe this to be true. According to Wiki, the receiving team may call for a fair catch on a kickoff. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_catch) I know not to trust Wiki completely, but this one seems so specific I do believe it. Therefore if the kicker tries to pop the ball into the air, a receiver could signal for a fair catch and no one on the kicking team would be allowed to catch the ball in the air "interfering with the fair catch".
I do believe that rule cite to be accurate, and it's probably a good reason why the chip shot onside kick isn't used often. OTOH, it also relies on the special teams coach for the receiving team making sure that his players know that, if they see a pop-up kick, to signal for a fair catch, but that shouldn't be a hard bit of coaching.

I was relying on my memory of onside kicks over the years, and watching a few go out of bounds while still in the air. Mea culpa.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-14-2019 at 04:10 PM.
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Old 12-14-2019, 04:14 PM
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I do believe that rule cite to be accurate, and it's probably a good reason why the chip shot onside kick isn't used often. OTOH, it also relies on the special teams coach for the receiving team making sure that his players know that, if they see a pop-up kick, to signal for a fair catch, but that shouldn't be a hard bit of coaching.
They just need to call for a fair catch on every onside kick (once it obviously is). There would be no penalty if the kick bounced, the fair catch just wouldn't apply. And the fair catch signaler needn't be the one who catches it (or evem tries). I've often seen fair catch signals given only to have the one signalling step out of the way hoping the ball (punt in this case) going into the end zone.
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Old 12-15-2019, 02:30 PM
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1. Hey, thanks all. Good conversation here with lots of details and examples from similar situations you can recall over years of watching NFL football.
2. Two more questions come to mind:

a) For a two-point conversion attempt, what yardline becomes the line of scrimmage? ...barring any penalties that would move the ball further from the endzone, that is. And, for that matter, from what yardline is a one-point conversion kicked? (Perhaps, it is the same yardline for either conversion?)

b) I keep failing to note this myself, but does 2nd OR 4th quarter begin with play resuming at the same yardline where play just ended when the clock ran out, only now possession of the ball switches to the once-defending team? Is that correct?
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Old 12-15-2019, 02:56 PM
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For a two-point conversion attempt, what yardline becomes the line of scrimmage?
The 2 yard line for a 2 pt. conversion, 15 yard line for a PAT (for a 33 yard kick).

Does 2nd OR 4th quarter begin with play resuming at the same yardline where play just ended when the clock ran out, only now possession of the ball switches to the once-defending team?

Possession does not change hands at the start of the 2nd and 4th quarter.
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Old 12-15-2019, 03:15 PM
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For a two-point conversion attempt, what yardline becomes the line of scrimmage?
The 2 yard line for a 2 pt. conversion, 15 yard line for a PAT (for a 33 yard kick).
Just to note that the latter is a recent change to the NFL rules.

Prior to 2015, conversions were always tried from the 2-yard-line, regardless of whether they were for one point (via kick) or two points (via a play from scrimmage).

However, PAT kicks had become close to automatic -- in 2014, 99.3% of all one-point conversions were successful (1230 attempts, 1222 successes). As the PAT kick had become essentially boring and anti-climactic, the NFL moved the line of scrimmage back to the 15 yard line beginning in 2015.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-15-2019 at 03:15 PM.
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Old 12-15-2019, 03:15 PM
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At the start of the 2nd and 4th quarters, the teams change the direction they're moving down the field, so as to equalize any benefits one side might have from things like wind direction or the sun being in one team's eyes. But aside from effectively giving a free timeout, that's all that happens at those times. If you're on a drive deep into your opponent's territory at the end of the first quarter, you'll still be deep in your opponent's territory and continuing your drive at the start of the 2nd.

On the other hand, everything (except the score, of course) resets at halftime, and you start over with a new kickoff in the 3rd quarter. So you'd better get done whatever you're doing before the end of the half.
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Old 12-15-2019, 03:15 PM
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At the start of the 2nd and 4th quarters, the teams change the direction they're moving down the field, so as to equalize any benefits one side might have from things like wind direction or the sun being in one team's eyes. But aside from effectively giving a free timeout, that's all that happens at those times. If you're on a drive deep into your opponent's territory at the end of the first quarter, you'll still be deep in your opponent's territory and continuing your drive at the start of the 2nd.

On the other hand, everything (except the score, of course) resets at halftime, and you start over with a new kickoff in the 3rd quarter. So you'd better get done whatever you're doing before the end of the half.
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Old 12-16-2019, 10:26 AM
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This has happened a couple of times before in the NFL, both times because of a mental error by the receiving team.

First time was a few years ago, Bills-Jets game. The Jets kicked the ball deep downfield but the Bills, for whatever reason, just stared at the ball bouncing about on the field for a few moments without doing anything. Then suddenly realization hit them and they tried to grab the ball but it was too late, a Jets player had already snatched it by then. It was in the Bills' end zone, so it was a touchdown, I believe.
Note that the touchback rule changed 2 seasons ago. If the kickoff reaches the endzone without being touched by a member of the receiving team, it's an automatic touchback and the receiving team get the ball at the 25. That's why you see returners just letting the ball land in the endzone if they don't think it's worth returning. It used to be they had to catch it & take a knee to be safe.
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Old 12-16-2019, 11:35 AM
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Note that the touchback rule changed 2 seasons ago. If the kickoff reaches the endzone without being touched by a member of the receiving team, it's an automatic touchback and the receiving team get the ball at the 25. That's why you see returners just letting the ball land in the endzone if they don't think it's worth returning. It used to be they had to catch it & take a knee to be safe.
Prior to that change the Jets scored a touchdown against the Bills because they made a short kickoff, the ball dribbled into the end zone untouched by the Bills, and a Jet scooped it up and it was counted as a score.
https://www.sbnation.com/2017/1/1/14...uchdown-bills?
If that happened this year it would have just been a touchback.

Last edited by Atamasama; 12-16-2019 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 12-16-2019, 11:37 AM
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I thought there was a rule that said a player can intentionally go to ground and end the play, even if no opposing player has touched him. It's rarely used but in some situations it's better to end the play and guarantee possession of the ball rather than try to keep moving and take a chance of losing possession.
In addition to the situations mentioned above, there is also the quarterback slide. A quarterback running with the ball who slides feet first is considered down even if no one touches him. This is done to lower the risk of injury.
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Old 12-16-2019, 12:47 PM
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It's a bit more nuanced than that:
- For the receiving team, it's a live ball, and can be recovered, from the moment it's kicked.
- For the kicking team, while it's a live ball the moment it's kicked, they cannot legally *recover* the ball until it's traveled upfield 10 yards -- that is, if it's kicked from the 35 yard line, the offense cannot legally recover the ball until it reaches the 45 yard line.
- The ball is "live" once it's kicked, and does not have to touch the ground to become live.

And, onside kicks aren't necessarily *always* on the ground, though that's typical (with, as you note, the kicking team usually trying for a big hop into the air). Another strategy for onside kicks is for the kicker to pop the ball up into the air, just a bit longer than 10 yards downfield, with the hopes that a teammate can run under it and snatch it out of the air before a member of the receiving team can.
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Too late to edit:

Note that this means that, although the receiving team can be no closer than 10 yards from the yard line from which the ball is kicked up until the moment of the kick, they do not need to *stay* that far back. They can, and do, move forward once the ball is kicked, and they can recover the ball before it travels 10 yards.

Also: the reason the "bouncing on the ground" onside kick has become the norm is, I think, because it's harder to place a kick in the air (the "chip shot") where you want it, without it going out of bounds, which gives the receiving team the ball at that point.
One more thing to add to this. The kicking team can recover the ball as soon as is touched by the receiving team, even if it hasn't gone ten yards yet. So the receiving team might not try to recover it if they don't think it will go ten yards, because if they try to grab it everyone's going to dive on it.

This actually happened in the Rams/Cowboys game yesterday. The Rams kicked an onside kick that slowly rolled ten yards. Players from both sides surrounded it but didn't touch it until it crossed the line.
  #32  
Old 12-16-2019, 01:00 PM
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In addition to the situations mentioned above, there is also the quarterback slide. A quarterback running with the ball who slides feet first is considered down even if no one touches him. This is done to lower the risk of injury.
Thatís usually called ďgiving himself upĒ when a QB does this. Heís considered down at the point where he begins the slide, no matter where he ends up (so he canít slide out of bounds to stop the clock) and if he loses the ball in the process it doesnít matter because heís already down and the play is dead.

Also, the defense isnít allowed to make contact, though incidental contact is often unavoidable, especially if the defender is trying to tackle prior to the slide, and if the defender tries to avoid contact itís usually overlooked.
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Old 12-16-2019, 08:52 PM
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In the only NFL I ever saw live, the Cardinals kicked off to the Eagles. The Eagles receiver was watching the ball head towards the sideline around the 15 and decided to let it bounce out. A Cardinal player scooped it up and waltzed into the end zone. This happened in Shibe Park. Bonus question: what team was the Cardinals?

SPOILER:
The Chicago Cardinals. The game was, I think, in 1948. They moved to St. Louis after the 1959 season


Incidentally, in Canadian football, any punt can be recovered by the kicker, along with anyone behind the kicker or who is passed by the kicker as he runs downfield. As a result, the receiving team cannot lit the ball roll dead, but must field it. I don't know the history but I conjecture that this must have been once true in American football and the onside kick is just a vestige of the old rule.
  #34  
Old 12-17-2019, 12:48 AM
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In the only NFL I ever saw live, the Cardinals kicked off to the Eagles. The Eagles receiver was watching the ball head towards the sideline around the 15 and decided to let it bounce out. A Cardinal player scooped it up and waltzed into the end zone...
This makes me wonder when they put in the rule that the kicking team can't advance their own kick without it being possessed by the return team first.
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Old 12-17-2019, 02:12 AM
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Thatís usually called ďgiving himself upĒ when a QB does this. Heís considered down at the point where he begins the slide, no matter where he ends up (so he canít slide out of bounds to stop the clock) and if he loses the ball in the process it doesnít matter because heís already down and the play is dead.

Also, the defense isnít allowed to make contact, though incidental contact is often unavoidable, especially if the defender is trying to tackle prior to the slide, and if the defender tries to avoid contact itís usually overlooked.
Carson Wentz once faked a QB slide while playing against the Redskins in order to fool their defenders into giving up pursuit momentarily on him, which then allowed him to sneak by and continue running for additional yards on them. It caused considerable anger and I don't know if he's done it again since.

Last edited by Velocity; 12-17-2019 at 02:15 AM.
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Old 12-17-2019, 03:13 AM
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Thatís usually called ďgiving himself upĒ when a QB does this. Heís considered down at the point where he begins the slide, no matter where he ends up (so he canít slide out of bounds to stop the clock)
I guess you didn't see the Oakland game Sunday.
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Old 12-17-2019, 09:48 AM
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Carson Wentz once faked a QB slide while playing against the Redskins in order to fool their defenders into giving up pursuit momentarily on him, which then allowed him to sneak by and continue running for additional yards on them. It caused considerable anger and I don't know if he's done it again since.
"Fake" slides are supposed to be officiated as the same as the real thing. But officials are apt to err on the side of not stopping plays.

It's in the best interests of QBs not to fake anyway. It encourages defenders to take the 15 if fakes are allowed, which defeats the purpose of protecting the QB.
  #38  
Old 12-17-2019, 10:56 AM
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This makes me wonder when they put in the rule that the kicking team can't advance their own kick without it being possessed by the return team first.
On a kickoff, they can still advance the kick, as itís a live ball. They just canít recover it in the end zone now, as itís a dead ball once it crosses the goal line. And on a punt, a kicking team doesnít need the other team to possess the ball to recover it, they just need the receiving team to touch it.
  #39  
Old 12-17-2019, 11:27 AM
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On a kickoff, they can still advance the kick, as it’s a live ball.
I don't think that this is correct, at least not in the NFL. My understanding has always been that, while the kicking team can recover the ball on a kickoff once it's gone ten yards, if they do successfully gain possession of the ball, they cannot advance it, and the play is blown dead at that spot.

From the NFL's rules on kicks (PDF):

Quote:
The ball is dead if it is caught or recovered by a player of the kicking team. If the catch or recovery is legal, the ball belongs to the kicking team at the dead-ball spot.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-17-2019 at 11:31 AM.
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Old 12-17-2019, 11:52 AM
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Thanks. I think I misread his post.
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Old 12-18-2019, 08:28 PM
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Another thing about the old NFL I just wanted to mention. I don't know when the rule changed but back in the 50s (and presumably earlier) a runner wasn't down until his forward motion stopped. If a player was tackled and he slid forward 3 yards, he got that yardage. If he was able to pop up he could continue running. Naturally, this led to piling on and more injuries and eventually the rule was changed.
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Old 12-18-2019, 09:31 PM
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Another thing about the old NFL I just wanted to mention. I don't know when the rule changed but back in the 50s (and presumably earlier) a runner wasn't down until his forward motion stopped. If a player was tackled and he slid forward 3 yards, he got that yardage. If he was able to pop up he could continue running. Naturally, this led to piling on and more injuries and eventually the rule was changed.
Iím trying to imagine what that would look like today.
  #43  
Old 12-18-2019, 10:26 PM
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Unlikely scenario but what happens is the opposing team manages to intercept a point after attempt? Can they theoretically run down the field and score a touchdown?
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Old 12-18-2019, 10:29 PM
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I'm pretty sure I saw a game once on a snow-covered field where a dude slid for a full five yards after going down.
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Old 12-18-2019, 11:36 PM
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Unlikely scenario but what happens is the opposing team manages to intercept a point after attempt? Can they theoretically run down the field and score a touchdown?
Close. If a team intercepts the two point conversion (or recovers a fumble or blocks an extra point kick) and returns it to the opposite endzone, they get two points.
  #46  
Old 12-19-2019, 08:35 AM
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Close. If a team intercepts the two point conversion (or recovers a fumble or blocks an extra point kick) and returns it to the opposite endzone, they get two points.
And in the "how could this ever possibly happen?" category, if either team scores a safety on an extra point attempt, that team is awarded one point.
  #47  
Old 12-19-2019, 09:24 AM
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And in the "how could this ever possibly happen?" category, if either team scores a safety on an extra point attempt, that team is awarded one point.
Attempted interception runback gets out of the endzone and the returner fumbles, at which point it goes out of bounds in the endzone. B was responsible for the ball and it became dead in their endzone = safety, one point.
  #48  
Old 12-19-2019, 09:36 AM
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Attempted interception runback gets out of the endzone and the returner fumbles, at which point it goes out of bounds in the endzone. B was responsible for the ball and it became dead in their endzone = safety, one point.
Yes, sure, it could physically happen, but it's vanishingly rare - never in the NFL, only a few times in college. And going the other way - the defense scores a safety on the offense - has never happened.
  #49  
Old 12-19-2019, 07:15 PM
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Close. If a team intercepts the two point conversion (or recovers a fumble or blocks an extra point kick) and returns it to the opposite endzone, they get two points.
I saw Eric Berry do this live on TV.

https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/...efs-homecoming
It was epic.
  #50  
Old 12-19-2019, 07:21 PM
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Suppose that, on a kickoff, the ball lands on the 1 yard line but a player on the receiving team deliberately bats or kicks the ball out the back of the end zone. Touchback or safety?
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