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Player Positions in American Football

When two opposing American football teams meet on the gridiron (playing field), the player positions depend on whether the football team is playing offense or defense. Football pits the [more…]

American Football Terms and Definitions

To understand and enjoy American football, get familiar with key terms and what they mean. Until you grasp basic football lingo, listening to announcers call a football game can be like listening to monkey [more…]

Football For Dummies (USA Edition) Cheat Sheet

American football is about trying to make points by passing, carrying, or kicking an oblong ball (with two pointed ends) into your opponent's end zone. Football is a rough-and-tumble game with its own [more…]

American Football Stadiums and Fields

Although the dimensions of a football field are the same, from high school to the NFL, every stadium seems different. That’s because all across America, the atmosphere inside each stadium, or the architectural [more…]

How to Follow the American Football Game Clock

In an American football game, the game clock, which is operated by a timekeeper in the press box, doesn’t run continuously throughout the game’s 15-minute [more…]

Using Instant Replay to Challenge a Call in American Football

Under the instant replay challenge system, a coach who disagrees with a referee’s call can ask the referees to review that call with instant replay. (The NFL resurrected this system in 1999 after trying [more…]

Skills a Quarterback Needs to Succeed in American Football

When scouts or coaches examine a quarterback’s potential to play in the NFL, they run down a checklist of physical, mental, and personality traits that affect a quarterback’s success on the field. The [more…]

How Quarterbacks Call Plays and Audibilize during Football Games

In American football, the quarterback relays to his teammates in the huddle what play the coach has called. The play is a mental blueprint or diagram for every player on the field. Quarterbacks are also [more…]

How to Read a Quarterback's Statistics

Being a quarterback in American football involves a lot of math. Quarterbacks are judged statistically on all levels of football by their passing accuracy [more…]

American Football Passing Terms

When discussing the passing game in American football, you use certain words and descriptions. Because passing involves the quarterback throwing the football, many of these terms relate to preventing or [more…]

An American Football Running Back’s Job Description

In an American football game, a running back has a responsibility, or assignment, on every play. Running backs may have the toughest job on the football field because they have to not only know every play [more…]

American Football Lineman Penalties

In American football, the offensive line can receive a variety of penalties for transgressions on the field. When the ref blows the whistle because of something an offensive lineman did, the team receives [more…]

The Types of Blocks in American Football

Knowing one type of American football block from another can help you impress a diehard fan or want to play on the offensive line. Here’s the lowdown on some of the most common block types in football: [more…]

How Offense Gains Better Field Position in Football

Scoring is always an offense’s ultimate goal in an American football game, but to score, you have to move down the field toward your opponent’s end zone. The offense uses various strategies for gaining [more…]

What Makes a Good Defensive Lineman in Football

Great defensive linemen in American football need a combination of size, speed, strength, and durability, which isn’t found in many players. A good defensive lineman has the majority of these qualities [more…]

The American Football Player's Uniform

It isn’t the uniform that separates one football player from the others; it’s his talent and heart. But the uniform and its protective pads are a necessary part of playing football, something any player [more…]

The Coin Toss and Kickoff in American Football

Every American football game starts with a coin toss. Selected members of each team (called captains) come to the center of the field, where the referee holds a coin. In the NFL, the coin toss is restricted [more…]

American Football Referee Signals for Offense

Because American football referees can’t always yell loud enough for the offense to hear, the referee uses signals to inform football players and fans of penalties, touchdowns, and other calls made on [more…]

Referee Signals for Defense in American Football

In American football, referees can signal when the defense either makes an illegal play, warranting a penalty, or scores. Only a few signals are specific to the defense in a football game, but the referees [more…]

American Football Game-Play Referee Signals

During an American football game, the referees can’t yell loud enough for a stadium full of people to hear, so the referee uses signals to inform everyone of everything that transpires on the field. Here’s [more…]

The Quarterback's Job in a Football Game

With the exception of kicking plays, quarterbacks touch the ball on every offensive play during a football game. A quarterback’s job is to direct his team toward the end zone and score as many points as [more…]

How a Quarterback Reads the Defense in a Football Game

When a quarterback prepares for a football game, he wants to be able to read the defense — look at a specific defensive alignment and instantly know which offense will or won’t succeed against it. [more…]

What the Running Backs Do in a Football Game

Understanding what’s going on during football running plays is much easier when you know who’s responsible for the running game. The next time you see a football offense set up, look for the two players [more…]

Football's Offensive Team: What Makes a Good Running Back

Running backs need more skills than American football players at other positions. During any given football game, a running back may run the ball, catch a pass, or block an opposing player. Occasionally [more…]

Possible Stances for Running Backs in Football

The running backs in an American football team’s offense use established stances, depending on the play being run. A running back can use two stances: [more…]


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