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Old 02-03-2020, 06:17 PM
Jinx is offline
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Explain These SB Football Penalties


The "Football Riddler" returns with more football questions, in this Superbowl:
a) There was a penalty for offensive interference. Huh? Is that like an offensive player unnecessarily messing with a defensive player, I wager?

b) There was a penalty for defensive interference! Excuse me, but isn't that THE job of the defense?

c) There was a penalty for an offensive man illegally downfield. Does that imply the man was extremely off-sides?
Or, is it a case of too many men on the field being caught by the ref only after the ball was snapped?

d) About that controversial touchdown: I wager the rules say the ball has to break the vertical plane (at the start of the endzone), but I can only assume this is true as long as the ball is attached to some part of the human body??? ...Even if 90% of the human body is out of the endzone, if not out of bounds???

And yet... on the flip side, one must land two feet (or, foot parts thereof) in the far end of the endzone before stepping out of bounds when making a catch for a TD in the endzone??? Specifically, I refer to a Ravens' TD catch where one foot and the tips of toes on the other foot scraped the endzone before stepping out of bounds for a TD in regular season. (I forget which Ravens game this was.)

Thanks for sharing your football knowledge!
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:20 PM
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Oh, one more anomaly! In the 4th Quarter, the 2 minute warning missed the 2 minute mark. I assume this was because it fell in the midst of a play putting the clock below 2:00, but then there was a penalty on the play and the clock got set back to 2:02. Still, play resumed and the clock dropped to 1:56 when the two-minute warning was FINALLY recognized. What are the rules about that? Could it not be observed at a ref-induced 2:02?

Last edited by Jinx; 02-03-2020 at 06:21 PM.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:32 PM
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When the ball is in the air, everyone has a equal right to it. So either side could get hit with pass interference if their actions actually interfere with the catch attempt. In this superbowl the offensive player pushed the defensive player back, out of the way so as he could not catch the ball.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:50 PM
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Specifically if you are seen to be pushing away from a defender around or shortly before the arrival of the ball, to a significant degree (often that means your arm is fully extended in the push) then that is the most common form of OPI. It happens less often than DPI but it happens.

It is illegal for an offensive lineman (the center, two guards, and two tackles) to move more than 5 yards past the line of scrimmage during a passing play before the ball is thrown unless they are in the process of blocking a defender. If the right tackle is not involved with anyone and runs past the line of scrimmage as the quarterback is throwing the ball, that’s a penalty. The offense is not allowed to use those players as receivers or to make them even appear to potentially be receivers.

The reason for this is that the defense can’t physically cover every single offensive player so you have to limit the potential number of receivers to no more than 6. (The quarterback is technically a receiver even though he’s the guy who normally throws the ball, since some plays have him hand off or toss the ball backwards to another player who then tosses a legal forward pass to the quarterback who is now a receiver.)

Breaking the plane for a touchdown requires the person with the ball to have control of the ball (it can’t be slipping out of his hands or dropped) and the player can’t be out of bounds at the time. Note that you are not out of bounds until you touch the ground out of bounds. So you can dive across the goal line out of bounds and still get a touchdown if the ball crosses the plane between the pylons (or over one of them) while it is in your control, before you touch the ground out of bounds.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:58 PM
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Oh I forgot to add, yes if you are catching the ball for a touchdown you have to catch the ball, gain control of it, and have both feet touch the ground inside the end zone. If you are on your tiptoes as you fully complete the catch, both feet touching in the end zone, and then fall out of the end zone that counts as a TD. If you land flat-footed after the catch but one or both feet are partially out of the end zone you were out of bounds. Also, if you go out of bounds in the end zone by your own power (you weren’t pushed out by a defender) then return to the end zone and catch the ball it doesn’t count.

The rules change if you have the ball and run into the end zone, or you are already in the end zone and catch the ball. One way to think of the difference is that the runner is bringing the ball into the end zone across the goal line while a receiver isn’t.
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Old 02-03-2020, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinx View Post
Oh, one more anomaly! In the 4th Quarter, the 2 minute warning missed the 2 minute mark. I assume this was because it fell in the midst of a play putting the clock below 2:00, but then there was a penalty on the play and the clock got set back to 2:02. Still, play resumed and the clock dropped to 1:56 when the two-minute warning was FINALLY recognized. What are the rules about that? Could it not be observed at a ref-induced 2:02?
The clock was running and showed 2:02 when the ball was snapped. It kept running through the play. However, a flag was thrown just prior to the snap because of a false start. Thus, the play 'never happened', and the 5-yard penalty was enforced. Because of the penalty, the clock stopped and didn't restart until the next snap. That play took six seconds and the two-minute warning was enforced at the 1:56 mark.

The two-minute warning cannot be observed until there are two minutes (or less) remaining in the half.
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Old 02-03-2020, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atamasama View Post
It is illegal for an offensive lineman (the center, two guards, and two tackles) to move more than 5 yards past the line of scrimmage during a passing play before the ball is thrown unless they are in the process of blocking a defender. If the right tackle is not involved with anyone and runs past the line of scrimmage as the quarterback is throwing the ball, that’s a penalty.
I thought it was illegal for a lineman to go past the line of scrimmage before the pass is thrown (which you describe in the second sentence quoted above) - that is “illegal man downfield”.

I wasn’t aware of the 5 yard allowance in the first sentence; where does that come from?
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Old 02-03-2020, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moriarty View Post
I thought it was illegal for a lineman to go past the line of scrimmage before the pass is thrown (which you describe in the second sentence quoted above) - that is “illegal man downfield”.

I wasn’t aware of the 5 yard allowance in the first sentence; where does that come from?
Sorry, that was a bad edit, I had it right and in proofreading I erroneously changed it to a 5 yard allowance. You can’t be past the line at all. The penalty is 5 yards.
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Old 02-03-2020, 09:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinx View Post
a) There was a penalty for offensive interference. Huh? Is that like an offensive player unnecessarily messing with a defensive player, I wager?
Yes, the receiver cannot push off on the defender.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinx View Post
b) There was a penalty for defensive interference! Excuse me, but isn't that THE job of the defense?
The defender cannot run into the receiver before the ball has arrived - and he has to have his eyes looking back at the ball. In this case, the Niners defender was just plain blocking and trucking into the Chiefs receiver without ever looking for the ball.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinx View Post
d) About that controversial touchdown: I wager the rules say the ball has to break the vertical plane (at the start of the endzone), but I can only assume this is true as long as the ball is attached to some part of the human body?
Yes, ball must be in the ballcarrier's hand. Even if only the tip of the ball breaks the plane, it is a TD.
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