Questions about the American sport of football. Not to be confused with the [football] tag, which Americans call "soccer."

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7
votes
2answers
686 views

What is the Spider 2 Y Banana?

In a Jon Gruden interview on ESPN, he calls a play Spider 2 Y Banana: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jV02cGw-PvQ I have no idea what to make of this. What do the words even reference, and what do ...
2
votes
2answers
265 views

NFL the playoff race tie breakers regarding common games record

Based on the rankings explanation provided by CBS regarding the NFL playoff situation; CBS provides something regarding a common record: Seattle is ahead of Detroit based on common games record ...
5
votes
1answer
85 views

Does a fast paced NFL offense tire out the defense more than the offense?

NFL broadcasts of Philadelphia Eagles games are full of shots of the opposing team's defense struggling to catch its breath. The announcers often discuss how Chip Kelly's fluid, no-huddle offense ...
4
votes
2answers
58 views

How are referees so good at spotting penalties in real time?

I'm thinking about american football in particular, but this question could be applicable to other sports. When I'm watching a game on TV I've noticed the referees are typically very good about ...
0
votes
2answers
558 views

Is it possible for football teams to lose points during the game?

If football teams are in violation of rules or something, do they get a penalty deducted from their score? Are there any other ways to lose points? I don't see anything about this in the Beginner's ...
4
votes
2answers
533 views

NFL: Why do kick coverage teams always run all the way down the field

I've noticed this frequently in the NFL. When there's a kickoff that is downed in the end zone for a touchback (or is out of the back of the endzone), the coverage team still runs all the way down the ...
6
votes
3answers
632 views

Can a team in the NFL make the playoffs with only three wins?

It's impossible for all the teams in a division to have losing records in their divisional games--every time someone loses a game, someone else in the division wins it. But the home team could win ...
5
votes
3answers
395 views

Ineligible Man Down field on a Punt (NCAA v NFL)

In college football, specifically the NCAA there are many punters that use a "Rugby Style" kick to punt the ball. Often the punter will run to the side of his kicking foot and then punt the ball. ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

In American football, which team is on offense first?

Is it guaranteed to be the home team or the away team, or is it decided randomly? Thanks!
6
votes
4answers
95 views

Are certain bye weeks more advantageous than others in the NFL?

Based on this year's schedule it seems that an NFL team's bye can come anywhere from the 4th week of the season to the 12th. Is there either conventional wisdom or statistical study of which weeks are ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

NFL betting odds during game?

I have a couple basic questions about NFL betting. 1) Are betting odds set in stone before the game begins, or do they evolve with the progression of the game? 2) What are "closing odds?" Are ...
6
votes
2answers
96 views

NFL vs. CFL regulations

What are the main differences between regulations of the NFL and the CFL? I live in Canada and follow the NFL, but also watch CFL games once in a while. I know a few differences; for example in the ...
2
votes
1answer
116 views

NFL Fantasy Injury designations: difference between questionable vs doubtful

In the NFL and more in the context of Fantasy Football, what is the difference between each of the designations for questionable vs doubtful? Which one is more severe?
-4
votes
1answer
90 views

Which wide receivers should I start for week 8? [closed]

In week 8 I have Dez Bryant, Doug Baldwin, and Andre Johnson as my receivers, I already have a solid FLEX so its down to two of these guys. Dez Bryant has been performing really well lately so I'm ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

How many championship rings does Troy Aikman have?

As I was watching Green Bay beat up on Carolina today, I saw a Papa John's Pizza ad featuring Troy Aikman. During the commercial, they show a closeup on his hand, bejeweled with his championship ...
5
votes
1answer
85 views

What made Notre Dame, Notre Dame?

In the mid 90s I spent some time playing football and training at the University of Nebraska. I was in awe at how the football program generated such an advantage under Tom Osborne. You walked the ...
6
votes
1answer
106 views

Is hiking the football required or just a good idea?

In football, the ball starts at the line of scrimmage and from there is hiked back to the quarterback. Doing this creates room for the quarterback to make passing or running plays. Clearly hiking the ...
3
votes
1answer
320 views

Sabermetrics Applied to American Football, Specifically the NFL

Sabermetrics and advanced stats have become a big part of baseball in the recent years. Defensive shifts are growing rapidly. "Old School" stats are becoming less relevant compare to "New School" ...
2
votes
1answer
40 views

Why are CFB polls so week-to-week compared to NFL's power ranking style?

Disclaimer** I tried to make this question as unbiased and as unopinionated as possible. I notice a discrepancy in how teams are ranked in college football polls vs how they are ranked in NFL power ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Why doesn't a player have to catch the ball from a punt?

I've been getting in to NFL this season and really like the sport. One point I was unclear about in the rules is when a team punts the ball. Why does the receiving player not have to catch it? I ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Requirements for Touchdown Catch Near the Goal Line

When a ball carrier has possession in the field of play, and carries the ball toward the end zone, the requirement for scoring a touchdown is that the ball cross the plane of the goal line. The ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

Personal Foul causing fumble

In the NFL, supposing a player catches the ball legally and runs with it, for a total of a 25 yard gain, but is hit to the head, causing a fumble before he makes contact with the ground (and is ...
9
votes
2answers
685 views

Why are NFL hash marks closer than NCAA hash marks?

Typically as you move up to more competitive levels of a sport, elements are adjusted to account for the increase of skill/speed/power of better players. NBA 3-point line is farther from hoop than ...
5
votes
2answers
819 views

What happens if a receiver is beyond the end zone in football?

I suspect that this is just "out of bounds", but what happens when a receiver catches a pass and has two feet out of the end zone at the far end? Is this just out of bounds or is there more ...
5
votes
1answer
115 views

Why couldn't the referees cancel the timeout in the Jets game?

In this week's Jets-Packers game, the wrong person called a timeout from the sidelines (only the head coach is allowed). The referees played correctly, watching the field instead of who is calling ...
4
votes
2answers
860 views

Why doesn't Los Angeles have an NFL team?

The Los Angeles metropolitan area is the second largest metro area in the United States. It is big enough to support 2 NBA teams (Lakers and Clippers), 2 MLB teams (Dodgers and Angels), and 2 NHL ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

What's the point of a half-point line?

In football betting, a "line" is provided by which the favorite team needs to win, in order for bettors to win that game. Sometimes the line is x.5 points. If it's impossible to gain half-points in ...
7
votes
2answers
629 views

San Francisco 49ers uniform colors: White or red?

I always thought they wore red while home and white while away. However, when I saw the highlights of their first game (2014 season) against the Cowboys yesterday, I noticed them wearing red even ...
3
votes
2answers
143 views

why are quarterback more prone to injury?

Quarterbacks are generally considered fragile and prone to injury. Of course some of this is related to the vulnerability related to getting blindsided while they are throwing the ball. However, ...
4
votes
2answers
154 views

Why is a 4-2-5 defense named as such?

I was watching a Bleacher Report video. In the video breaking down the TAMU-SC opener game, the narrator said, "Thanks to the abundance of linebacking talent, [SC] are looking to move to more of a ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

Two point conversion from 15 yard line?

During preseason, the NFL are trialling having extra points snapped from the 15 yard line. During the Giants-Bills preseason opener, all three extra points were successfully kicked. But what would ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

What is “strong side” vs. “weak side” on defense in American football?

What is "strong side" vs. "weak side" on defense in American football? I'm trying to get a basic understanding of this terminology but am getting tripped up.
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Who is the worst NFL team in history?

I know there are a lot of bad NFL teams but I want to know who the worst franchise in NFL history is.. (ie: least playoff appearances/wins/win percentage etc.)
0
votes
1answer
67 views

How quickly should a drop back passer release the ball?

The highest rated quarterbacks in football appear to release the ball just seconds after the snap. Sophisticated pass rushing and secondary coverages give the offense few opportunities to advance the ...
0
votes
1answer
197 views

When do the first NCAA Football Polls come out?

Does anyone know when the first AP polls for NCAA Football are announced?
2
votes
1answer
105 views

Scoring an American Football Game?

Is there an analog to baseball's scorecard for football? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baseball_scorekeeping
2
votes
3answers
168 views

Which defensive position is most likely to create turnovers in american football?

Defensive backs often get them from interceptions but it's possible for other players have forced fumbles, strips and blocked kicks.
4
votes
2answers
81 views

Rushing Yard and Yard Run

To a layman like me, they both sound like similar concepts (though, of course, they're not!): The aggregate number of yards a QB had run with the ball in his hands before either passing off the ball ...
4
votes
2answers
186 views

When did the NFL start using the Wonderlic test and how is it applied to the draft process?

I recently took a Wonderlic Cognitive Ability Test at a job interview. It consisted of logic, mathematics and grammar. The NFL uses this exam as a part of their draft analysis. I can understand why I ...
1
vote
3answers
283 views

What is a pass rusher?

Is it just another name for a running back or a wide receiver? It seems to me that it would be anyone who takes the pass from the QB and runs the ball which pretty much seems to be what the RB does. ...
2
votes
2answers
248 views

What does it mean to say, “X was the Nth overall pick for this season”?

I am a recent NFL enthusiast and have just started following the games but some terminology still stumps me. I understand the draft process in general and know that every year each of the 32 teams get ...
2
votes
3answers
276 views

Why do athletes need help standing up?

Watching televised sports, especially American Football and Basketball, it seems that whenever a player falls or is knocked down, he needs help getting back up. With football, it is somewhat ...
6
votes
1answer
109 views

False Start penalty clarification

In the Super Bowl this year Denver was called for a false start on the very first play of the game. The ref clearly stated the false start happened before the snap. Why was the play allowed to ...
4
votes
2answers
643 views

When are (American) football teams likely to decline penalties?

In the first quarter of the Super Bowl, the Seahawks threw an incomplete pass on first down, leading to second down. Except that the offense had a "false start," for a five yard penalty. The Broncos ...
3
votes
1answer
139 views
3
votes
2answers
646 views

Fake field goals or extra points in college football

How can there be a fake field goal or extra point in college when the holder starts out with his knee on the ground? This should instantly ground the ball if the kicker isn't going to kick it.
3
votes
3answers
182 views

Why do most coaches save key defensive resources till the end of the game?

This question could be asked of a number of sports, but the example I'm using comes from football. Yesterday, during the wild card round, the New Orleans Saints called a time out early in the second ...
3
votes
1answer
101 views

Why will there only be a 4 team playoff next year in College Football?

Why did they conclude that it should only be 4 instead of 8/16?
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Is a ball live if it bounces off the field goal and back into the field of play on a kickoff

If a team kicks off and the kickoff hits the upright of the field goal (or any part of the field goal) and the ball bounces straight back into the field of play (never hitting the ground out of ...
1
vote
1answer
148 views

Determining tiebreakers among teams within a conference

This question mentions how tiebreakers are determined among teams within a division. During the 2013 NFL season, a scenario has developed where four teams are eligible (Baltimore and Pittsburgh - AFC ...