History and Rules of American Football

Presentation / Essay (Pre-University), 2000

3 Pages

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1. Main idea of Football

2. The Team

3. The Field

4. The Rules

5. The Referee

6. Word From The Author

1. Main Idea Of Football

American Football, the well known full-contact sport is followed from the English Rugby in the 19th century. The aim of the game is to bring the ball across the field into the opponents end-zone.

Today football is one of the most popular sports in America, right behind baseball. Every year the Super-Bowl is a big event like the World Cup.

2. The Team

A entire football team consist of more than 40 men. But only 11 men are allowed to play at the same time for their team. There are several positions in a football team. There is a offensive team and a defensive team. The offence includes two Wide-Receivers, their job is to get the ball passed and make the points, two Running-Backs, who have to make the running- game, that’s when they get the ball handed by the Quarterback, who is the head of each team, he organize the whole offence and is always in direct contact to the coach. There are also two Tackles, two Guards and a Center. Their job is to protect the Quarterback from getting tackled by the opponent. Also is there another player in the Line of Scrimmage, that is how the first line of offensive-players is called: the Tide End, he is a special player who can be used to block or to catch the ball.

Then there is the defensive-team, consisting of two Ends, two Tackles, three Linebackers, two Cornerbacks and to Safety. All those players have a simple job, to stop the opponents from getting in the end-zone an pointing. They are allowed to use all kinds of techniques to prevent the opponents from getting in their end-zone. (More in “4. The Rules”)

A special player is the Kicker, whose only job it is to kick the ball between the two bars at the end of the field, to earn a point.

3. The Field

The regular field measures 120 x 53 1/3 yards. It is divided into two end- zones, a playfield witch is sided on both sites by the team-zones, where the not playing team-members and the coaches have to wait. From one end-zone to the other it takes 100 yards.

The playfield itself is divided into many short marks, which are important for the following rules. (see 4. The Rules)

In every end-zone there are two straight-up standing bars, a bit different than the soccer goal but it has nearly the same use.

4. The Rules

Most people think there are not many rules to play that game, but they fail. This game is not just about taking the ball from one end to the other, trying not to get smashed by a big guy whose only job it is to break your bones, it is just more than that.

To get clear about all those rules it has to take more than just 2 or 3 pages, so I give you a short summary of the most important rules of American Football.

Each team has 4 tries to bring the ball to the first down. That’s 10 yards. If they succeed they get another 4 tries. The aim is to get the ball to the end-zone, that gives 6 points and a bonus kick. This kick, called field-goal gives another

1 point.

If one team is not able to make a down (4 tries) they just got one chance to point with a field-goal. (That’s the situation the Kicker is involved in the game) This field-goal is worth about 3 points.

These opportunities are all just for the offensive team. The defensive team is also able to point, by a so called Safety. That is when the defence stop the opponent in their own end-zone. 2 points.

These are the main chances to point in this game.

Football is a full-contact sport and so you are allowed to use all kinds of tricks to stop your opponent, e.g. jump on him, slide between his legs, cling to him…

Still one point, the offence decides when to start the game, and so all players have to stand still, to that point the offensive Center hands the ball to his Quarterback. If anyone moves to quick the referees throw little flags on the playfield and the game stops.

In the past football was to hard, so hard that some guys died in fact of this full contact. So the NFL and all other leagues improved their rules to protect their players from getting real smashed. There are also the helmets, and this other stuff to protect bones, legs and especially the genitals.

5. The Referee

In a football game there are 4-7 referees who make sure that all rules are followed. One of them referees, has a microphone to announce the decision, for the coaches, the teams and also for the audience.

The referees have to interact when this happens:

- Time Out
- Touchdown, Extra point, Field goal
- Personal Foul (forbidden holding below the belt or grabbing into the mask)
- Illegal Use Of Hands
- Offside
- Illegal Motion
- Holding
- First Down
- Illegal Contact
- Delay Of Game
- Pass Interference
- Incomplete Pass...

6. Word From The Author

One last word:

To make this report I used some internet pages, books and magazines to get the information needed, but I wrote the whole text all by myself.

3 of 3 pages


History and Rules of American Football
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Quote paper
Sebastian Scheidt (Author), 2000, History and Rules of American Football, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/98729


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