Questions about the National Football League (NFL), the premiere professional league for American gridiron football.

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2
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1answer
59 views

Houston Texans offense

I have been watching Hard Knocks featuring the Houston Texans. I watch the NFL draft every year. It appears to me that the Texans are mainly focusing on defense. I understand that the defense is ...
0
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0answers
39 views

Why did the Bills go for 2 while trailing 10-9? [closed]

In the preseason match between the Buffalo Bills and Cleveland Browns, the Bills were trailing 10-3 with less than 2 minutes on the clock, and scored a touchdown : [EJ] Manuel ... threw a 14-yard ...
5
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1answer
65 views

How many of the NFL tiebreakers have actually been used?

The NFL has a long list of tie-breaking procedures. There are seven separate lists of rules depending on possible tie situations. However, it seems incredibly unlikely that two teams would have: ...
2
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1answer
57 views

How to read NFL current score format

This is the current "state" of the NFL game. What does it mean? "3rd and 24 on SF 20 yd" (SF is obv. San Francisco) Sorry for possible duplicate question - I cannot build up a question in English ...
1
vote
1answer
24 views

When did incentives and salary escalators start in the NFL?

Today, you commonly hear about players in the NFL breaking some threshold to unlock incentive bonuses. I want to know when these incentives started to appear in players' contracts and how the ...
3
votes
1answer
155 views

Why can a defensive lineman wear a number in the 60s?

Leonard Williams, a defensive end, wears number 62 for the Jets. Why can a defensive lineman wear a number in the 60s? My understanding was that 62 was for an offensive guard.
5
votes
1answer
174 views

Has a college team ever played against a professional team?

This question is inspired by the recent debate[1][2][3][4] about whether the 2014-15 University of Kentucky men's basketball team (who had been undefeated until tonight's loss to Wisconsin) could ...
2
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1answer
170 views

Which non-players in the NFL are the highest paid apart from the GM and head coach?

One of the things I learned from Michael Lewis's The Blind Side is that how much various parties get paid is a good window into their perceived value by their franchises (in the case of The Blind Side ...
3
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1answer
104 views

What is the record for most turnovers by an NFL team that won the game?

In the 2014 NFC Championship game, the Seattle Seahawks committed 5 turnovers (4 interceptions and one fumble) and still won the game. What is the record for most turnovers by an NFL team in a ...
3
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1answer
71 views

What does an NFL salary cap department do?

I sometimes hear about NFL GMs being "cap experts" rather than player-evaluators. And I just saw this headline: "John Idzik joining Jags as consultant". The article goes on to say, "Idzik, who was ...
4
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1answer
75 views

Why would Belichick spilt Gronk out wide against the Seahawks?

Bill Barnwell writes about the 2014-15 Super Bowl, Gronkowski spent a surprising amount of time matched up early split out as the world’s biggest decoy against Richard Sherman, but as the game ...
7
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1answer
825 views

Alternate Team to Super Bowl?

On Monday, January 19, 2015 the NFL announced they were investigated the New England Patriots for deflating footballs (to make it easier to handle) during the AFC Championship game against the ...
1
vote
1answer
175 views

NFL Draft Picks compared to the Success of Career

I have a couple of questions about the correlation between when a player is drafted and how well his career pans out. 1) How strong is the correlation between which round a prospective NFL player is ...
2
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1answer
93 views

Transition from NCAA to NFL

As a relative newcomer to the NFL I have some questions regarding NCAA players and their transition to the NFL. 1) Do some colleges have a reputation for consistently producing good players (such as ...
14
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5answers
3k views

Why does every American sport except Football seem to have a farm league?

Baseball (MLB) has a minor league, Hockey (NHL) has the AHL, Basketball (NBA) has the D-League, and even Soccer (MLS) has the USL and NASL although they may not be farm leagues in the same sense as ...
4
votes
5answers
218 views

Lateral Passes in the NFL

Why are lateral passes so rare in the NFL? I've seen quite a few situations in which it would seem advantageous. For example in a 2v1, 2v2 setting when the ball carrier is about to be tackled, why ...
5
votes
1answer
298 views

Seattle Seahawks' Legion of Boom

I've heard commentators and analysts refer to Seattle Seahawks' defense as the "Legion of Boom". I believe they call the secondary that name, to be exact. What is the story behind this? When and how ...
2
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1answer
120 views

Best first 100 career starts by quarterbacks

Few weeks ago Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers played his 100th career start, and with a win, he improved to 68-32; tying Brett Favre. What are the top records for the first 100 career starts ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

calculate winning percentage with a tie

How does the nfl calculate the Cincinati Bengals winning percentage with a 10-4-1 record as .700? I did the math with 14 and 15 games played and my numbers don't add up to their numbers.
6
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2answers
3k views

What is a “football move” in the NFL?

It happens a lot: a receiver catches the ball, drops it, it is called a fumble on the field. Then there is some expert commentator giving his opinion on whether the receiver made a 'football move' ...
5
votes
1answer
236 views

What is the closest any team has come to playing a home Super Bowl?

It's a well known fact that no team whose home stadium is hosting the Super Bowl has ever made it to the Super Bowl. My question is, which team has come the closest? (Closest in this case means how ...
3
votes
1answer
821 views

What is the longest an NFL team has gone without a WR TD catch?

The Kansas City Chiefs have not had a wide receiver catch a touchdown pass so far this season (through Week 15). According to team stats, only running backs, fullbacks, and tight ends have caught a ...
20
votes
1answer
930 views

What's the justification for this rarely-invoked NFL fumble rule?

Yesterday, at the end of the Packers-Bills game (2014 Week 15), Rodgers fumbled into his own endzone. Eddie Lacy recovered it, but was unable to fight his way out, resulting in a game-winning safety. ...
5
votes
1answer
311 views

What is the best record to miss and the worst record to make the NFL playoffs?

This question is inspired by the fact that the NFC currently has six teams (all outside of the NFC South division) that could finish with an 11-5 record or better. If that happened, one of those ...
2
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2answers
454 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

NFL teams with back to back shutouts

St. Louis Rams beat the Oakland Raiders in week 13 (of 2014 season) by a score of 52 to 0, and went on to beat Washington Redskins the following week 24 - 0. Are the Rams the first team to win back to ...
1
vote
1answer
314 views

Why does the NFL enforce injury report rules?

The NFL is investigating why quarterback Tony Romo wasn't listed on the official injury report despite his admission that he was playing with broken ribs. In 2009, the NFL fined the Jets $125K for ...
8
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2answers
257 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
137 views

What is the NFL record for most receivers with a catch in a single game on the one team?

The Saints are up to ten unique receivers with at least one catch in tonight's game against the Ravens, and I can find a reference to the Packers having a franchise record of 12 that's been reached ...
12
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1answer
2k views

NFL division with all teams having a losing or winning record

I'm wondering if there has been any division in the modern day NFL history where all teams finished the regular season with winning or losing record. Even though this might not be so probable, it is ...
4
votes
3answers
731 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it possible for an NFL team to go 20-0?

Is it possible for three NFL teams in different divisions in the same conference to all go 16-0 during the regular season? I'm not sure if this is possible with all the scheduling rules that they ...
5
votes
3answers
968 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. ...
6
votes
4answers
143 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
105 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
218 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
255 views

sports odds explanation for NFL

I'm looking at sports odds at for the first time and am a little confused. I understands that if ATS (against the spread) is negative, then the home team is predicted to win. Also, SP (spread) ...
1
vote
0answers
61 views

Why do coaches not more strongly discourage post-play celebrations, especially when the team is losing? [closed]

This probably applies mostly to American football. This past Sunday a player (Lamarr Houston of the Chicago Bears) suffered a season ending injury while celebrating a sack. The play came during the ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Can all penalties be declined in American Football?

I saw some highlights from an NFL game the other day (I think it was Detroit's 22-21 comeback win against Atlanta) and the presenter said they won the game with a field goal. Their first attempt at ...
4
votes
2answers
175 views

NFL Play for Ineligible Player

Has there ever been a play in the NFL that is designed for an ineligible offensive player to at some point receive the ball? Examples from college include the fumblerooski (now banned in college too, ...
3
votes
1answer
286 views

What's the difference between “questionable” vs “doubtful” injury designations in the NFL?

In the NFL, what is the difference between each of the designations for questionable vs doubtful? Which one is more severe?
7
votes
1answer
190 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
1k 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" ...
6
votes
3answers
3k 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
489 views

How does the NFL decide which teams play in London?

How does the NFL decide which teams play in London every season? Do any teams actually volunteer to play in London, considering the jet lag and also the fact that you might have to give up a home ...
7
votes
1answer
6k 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

Percentage of possible yards traveled?

How would one go about calculating their own NFL stats? For instance, I want to calculate the percentage total possible yards a team could have traveled if they had scored a TD on every drive. ...
3
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2answers
87 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
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2answers
2k 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
1answer
136 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 ...