REGULAR SEASON RULE BOOK

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  1. Rules .......................................................................................................... 3

  2. Terminology .............................................................................................. 4

  3. Eligibility .................................................................................................... 5

  4. Equipment.................................................................................................5

  5. Field............................................................................................................ 6

  6. Rosters ...................................................................................................... 6

  7. Timing and Overtime............................................................................... 7

  8. Scoring....................................................................................................... 8

  9. Coaches ..................................................................................................... 8

  10. Live Ball/Dead Ball .................................................................................. 9

  11. Running ..................................................................................................... 10

  12. Passing ...................................................................................................... 11

  13. Receiving................................................................................................... 11

  14. Rushing the Passer................................................................................. 12

  15. Flag Pulling ............................................................................................... 13

  16. Formations ................................................................................................ 14

  17. Unsportsmanlike Conduct ..................................................................... 14

  18. Penalties....................................................................................................15

    i. General

ii. Defensive Spot Fouls iii. Offensive Spot Fouls iv. Defensive Penalties v. Offensive Penalties

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I. Game


RULES

  1. At the start of each game, captains from both teams meet at mid eld for the coin toss to determine who starts with the ball. The visiting team calls the toss.

  2. The winner of the coin toss has the choice of offense or defense. The loser of the coin toss has the choice of direction. Possession changes to start the second half to the team that started the game on defense.

  3. The offensive team takes possession of the ball at its 5-yard line and has three (3) plays to cross mid eld. Once a team crosses mid eld, it has three (3) plays to score a touchdown.

  4. If the offense fails to score, the ball changes possession and the new offensive team starts its drive on its own 5-yard line.

  5. If the offensive team fails to cross mid eld, possession of the ball changes and the opposition starts its drive from its own 5-yard line.

  6. All possession changes, except interceptions, start on the offense’s 5-yard line.

  7. Teams change sides after the rst half. Possession changes to the team that started the game on defense.

II. Terminology

Boundary Lines

The outer perimeter lines around the eld. They include the sidelines and back of the end zone lines.

Line of Scrimmage

(LOS) an imaginary line running through the point of the football and across the width of the eld.

Line-to-Gain

The line the offense must pass to get a rst down or score.

Rush Line

An imaginary line running across the width of the eld seven yards (into the defensive side) from the line of scrimmage.

Offense

The team with possession of the ball.

Defense

The team opposing the offense to prevent it from advancing the ball.

Passer

The offensive player that throws the ball and may or may not be the quarterback.

Rusher

The defensive player assigned to rush the quarterback to prevent him/ her from passing the ball by pulling his/her ags or by blocking the pass.

Downs (1-2-3)

The offensive team has three attempts or “downs” to advance the ball. It must cross the line to gain to get another set of downs or to score.

Live Ball

Refers to the period of time that the play is in action. Generally used in regard to penalties. Live ball penalties are considered part of the play and must be enforced before the down is considered complete.

Dead Ball

Refers to the period of time immediately before or after a play.

Whistle

Sound made by an of cial using a whistle that signi es the end of the play or a stop in the action for a timeout, halftime or the end of the game.

Inadvertent Whistle

Of cial’s whistle that is performed in error.

Charging

An illegal movement of the ball-carrier directly at a defensive player who has established position on the eld. This includes lowering the head or initiating contact with a shoulder, forearm or the chest.

Flag Guarding

An illegal act by the ball-carrier to prevent a defender from pulling the ball-carrier’s ags by stiff arm, lowering elbow or head or by blocking access to the runner’s ags with a hand or arm.

Shovel Pass

A legal pitch attempted beyond the line of scrimmage.

Lateral

A backward or sideway toss of the ball by the ball-carrier.

Unsportsmanlike Conduct

A rude, confrontational or offensive behavior or language.

 

III. Eligibility

IV. Equipment

1. All players’ legal guardians must agree to the online waiver form at n ag.com/form/player for their speci c league before participating.

  1. The league provides each player with an of cial ag belt and NFL FLAG team jersey. Teams will use footballs provided by their league.

  2. Players must wear shoes. Cleats may not be allowed at certain locations. This will be speci ed in the tournament details you receive prior to the tournament. However, cleats with exposed metal are never allowed and must be removed.

  3. Players may tape their forearms, hands and ngers. Players may wear gloves, elbow pads and knee pads. Braces with exposed metals are not allowed.

  4. Players must remove all jewelry, hats and do-rags. Winter beanies are allowed.

  5. Players’ jerseys must be tucked into shorts or pants if they hang below the belt line.

  6. We recommend players wear shorts or pants that do not have pockets. Shorts or pants with belt loops or pockets must be taped. Games will not be delayed for a player to tape up pockets.

a. Flag belts cannot be the same color as shorts or pants.

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V. Field

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N0 RUNNING ZONE
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VI. Rosters

1. The eld dimensions are 30 yards by 70 yards with two 10-yard end 10 zones, and a mid eld line-to-gain.No-run zones precede each line-to gain by 5 yards. However, some tournaments may use smaller fields because of field space available or to complete tournament scheduling on time. page6image79928

2. No-run zones are in place to prevent teams from conducting power run plays. While in the no-run zones (a 5-yard imaginary zone before mid eld and before the end zone), teams cannot run the ball in any fashion. All plays must be pass plays, even with a handoff.

3. Stepping on the boundary line is considered out of bounds.

4. Each offensive team approaches only TWO no-run zones in each 10 drive (one zone 5 yards from mid field to gain the 1st down, and one zone 5 yards from the goal line to score a TD).

1. Home teams wear dark color jerseys. Visiting teams wear light color jerseys.

 
2. Teams must consist of at least ve players with a maximum of 10 players.
 
3. Teams must start games with a minimum of ve players. In the event of an injury, a team with insuf cient substitute players may play with four players on the eld but no fewer than four.
 
 

VII. Timing and Overtime

  1. Games are played on a 40 minute continuous clock with two 20 minute halves unless one team gains a 28-point advantage, which will then end the game. Clock stops only for timeouts or injuries.

  2. Halftime is one minute.

  3. Each time the ball is spotted, a team has 30 seconds to snap the ball. Teams will receive one warning before a delay-of-game penalty is enforced.

  4. Each team has one 30-second timeout per half.

  5. Of cials can stop the clock at their discretion.

  6. In the event of an injury, the clock will stop then restart when the injured player is removed from the eld of play.

  7. If the score is tied at the end of 40 minutes, an overtime period will be used to determine a winner. Overtime format is as follows:

    a. A coin ip will determine the team that chooses to be on offense or defense rst.

    i. If a second round of overtime must be played, the team that lost the coin toss will get to choose offense or defense for the start of the second round of overtime. This process continues with teams alternating who gets to choose to be on offense or defense to start out during every round of overtime.

    ii. The referee will determine which end of the eld the overtime will take place on.

b. Each team will take turns getting one (1) play from the defense’s 5-yard line for one point or the defense’s 10-yard line for two points. Whether to go for one or two points is up to the offensive team. Whether or not the team that begins on offense converts the team that started on defense gets a chance on offense to win or tie by converting a one- or two-point play of their own.

  1. Example: Team A starts on offense and chooses to go for one point from the 5-yard line and is successful. Team B is then on offense and can choose to either go for one point from the 5-yard line to tie and force a second round of overtime or to go for two points from the 10-yard line for the win.

  2. If the second team on offense in an overtime round fails to beat or match the team that went rst, the team that went rst wins.

c. Both teams must “go for two” from the 10-yard line starting with the third round of overtime.

d. The nal points earned by the winning team in the nal overtime will be added onto the winning team’s total score. The losing team will not receive any additional points.

i. Example: End of regulation time, score is 14-14. Team A scores one point and Team B score two points. Team B wins with a nal score of 16-14. Points are only added to total score from nal round of overtime.

e. All regulation period rules and penalties are in effect. f. There are no timeouts.

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VIII. Scoring

IX. Coaches

  1. Touchdown: 6 points

  2. PAT (point after touchdown) 1 point (5-yard line) or 2 points (10-yard line)

    1. Note: 1 point PAT is pass only; 2 point PAT can be run or pass.

    2. A team that scores a touchdown must declare whether it wishes to attempt a 1-point conversion (from the 5-yard line) or a 2-point conversion (from the 10-yard line). Any change, once a decision is made to try for the extra point, requires a charged timeout. A decision cannot be changed after a penalty. Interceptions on conversions cannot be returned.

  3. Safety: 2 points

a. A safety occurs when the ball-carrier is declared down in his/her own end zone. Runners can be called down when their ags are pulled by a defensive player, a ag falls out, they step out of bounds, their knee or arm touches the ground, a fumble occurs in the end zone or if a snapped ball lands in or beyond the end zone.

  1. After one team is winning by 28 points or more, the game is over. Once a 28 or more point advantage is gained, no PAT will be attempted. The game will continue in scrimage mode for remainder of the game.

  2. Forfeits are scored 28-0 for the winning team.

  1. Coaches are expected to adhere to NFL FLAG philosophies, coaching guidelines and code of conduct.

  2. Coaches are allowed on the
    eld to direct players according to need and division. Coaches must move to the sidelines before the snap of the ball.

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X. Live Ball/Dead Ball

  1. The ball is live at the snap of the ball and remains live until the of cial whistles the ball dead.

  2. The of cial will indicate the neutral zone and line of scrimmage.

    a. It is an automatic dead ball foul if any player on defense or offense enters the neutral zone. In regard to the neutral zone, the of cial may give both teams a “courtesy” neutral zone noti cation to allow their players to move back behind the line of scrimmage.

  3. A player who gains possession in the air is considered inbounds as long as one foot comes down in the eld of play.

  4. The defense may not mimic the offensive team signals by trying to confuse the offensive players, while the quarterback is calling out signals to start the play. This will result in an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

  5. Substitutions may be made on any dead ball.

  6. Any of cial can whistle the play dead.

  7. Play is ruled “dead” when:

a. The ball hits the ground.

i. If the ball hits the ground as a result of a bad snap, the ball is then placed where the ball hit the ground.

  1. The ball-carrier’s ag is pulled.

  2. The ball-carrier steps out of bounds.

  3. A touchdown, PAT or safety is scored.

  4. The ball-carrier’s knee or arm hits the ground.

  5. The ball-carrier’s ag falls out.

  6. The receiver catches the ball while in possession of one or no ag(s).

  7. The 7 second pass clock expires.

  8. Inadvertent whistle.

NOTE: There are no fumbles. The ball is spotted where the ball-carrier’s feet were at the time of the fumble.

  1. In the case of an inadvertent whistle, the offense has two options:
    a. Take the ball where it was when the whistle blew, and the down is consumed. b. Replay the down from the original line of scrimmage.

  2. A team is allowed to use a timeout to question an of cial’s rule interpretation. If the of cial’s ruling is correct, the team will be charged a timeout. If the rule is interpreted incorrectly, the timeout will not be charged and the proper ruling will be enforced. Of cials should all
    agree upon any controversial call in order to give each team the full bene t of each call.

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XI. Running

  1. The ball is spotted where the runner’s feet are when the ag is pulled, not where the ball- carrier has the ball. Forward progress will be measured by the player’s front foot.

  2. The quarterback cannot directly run with the ball. The quarterback is the offensive player who receives the snap.

  3. Only direct handoffs behind the line of scrimmage are permitted. Handoffs may be in front, behind or to the side of the offensive player but must be behind the line of scrimmage. The offense may use multiple handoffs.

    a. “Center sneak” play is no longer allowed. The QB is not allowed to handoff to the center on the rst handoff of the play.

  4. Absolutely NO laterals of any kind.

  5. No-run Zones are located 5 yards before each end zone and 5 yards on either side of mid eld are designed to avoid short-yardage power-running situations. Teams are not allowed to run in these zones if the subsequent line is LIVE. (Reminder: Each offensive team approaches only TWO no-run zones in each drive – one 5 yards from mid eld to gain the rst down and one 5 yards from the goal line to score a TD).

  6. Any player who receives a handoff can throw the ball from behind the line of scrimmage.

  7. Once the ball has been handed off in front, behind or to the side of the quarterback, all defensive players are eligible to rush.

  8. Runners may not leave their feet to advance the ball. Diving, leaping or jumping to avoid a ag pull is considered ag guarding.

  9. Spinning is allowed, but players cannot leave their feet to avoid a ag pull.

    a. Players spinning out of control will be called for ag guarding.

  10. Runners may leave their feet if there is a clear indication that he/she has done so to avoid collision with another player without a ag guarding penalty enforced.

  11. No blocking or “screening” is allowed at any time.

  12. Offensive players without the ball must stop their motion once the ball has crossed the line of scrimmage. No running with the ball-carrier.

  13. Flag obstruction – All jerseys MUST be tucked in before play begins. The ags must be on the player’s hips and free from obstruction Deliberately obstructed ags will be considered ag guarding.

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XII. Passing

XIII. Receiving

  1. All passes must be from behind the line of scrimmage, thrown forward and received beyond the line scrimmage.

    a. All passes that do not cross the line of scrimmage, whether received or not, are illegal forward passes.

    b. The quarterback may throw the ball away to avoid a sack. Pass must go beyond the line of scrimmage.

  2. Shovel passes are allowed but must be received beyond the line of scrimmage.

  3. The quarterback has a seven-second “pass clock.” If a pass is not thrown within the seven seconds, the play is dead, the down is consumed and the ball is returned to the line of scrimmage. Once the ball is handed off, the 7-second rule is no longer in effect.

    a. If the QB is standing in the end zone at the end of the 7-second clock, the ball is returned to the line of scrimmage (LOS).

  1. All players are eligible to receive passes (including the quarterback if the ball has been handed off behind the line of scrimmage).

  2. Only one player is allowed in motion at a time. All motion must be parallel to the line of scrimmage and no motion is permitted toward the line of scrimmage.

  3. A player must have at least one foot inbounds when making a reception.

  4. In the case of simultaneous possession by both an offensive and defensive player, possession is awarded to the offense.

  5. Interceptions change the possession of the ball at the point of interception. Interceptions are the only changes of possession that do not start on the 5-yard line.

  6. Interceptions are returnable but not on conversions after touchdowns.

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XIV. Rushing the Passer

  1. All players who rush the passer must be a minimum of seven yards from the line of scrimmage when the ball is snapped. Any number of players can rush the quarterback. Players not rushing the quarterback can defend on the line of scrimmage.

  2. Once the ball is handed off, the seven-yard rule no longer is in effect and all defenders may go behind the line of scrimmage.

  3. A special marker, or the referee, will designate a rush line seven yards from the line of scrimmage. Defensive players should verify they are in the correct position with the of cial on every play.

a A legal rush is:
i. Any rush from a point 7 yards from the defensive line of scrimmage.
ii. A rush from anywhere on the eld AFTER the ball has been handed off by the

quarterback.
iii. If a rusher leaves the rush line early (breaks the 7 yard area), they may return to the

rush line, reset and then legally rush the quarterback.
iv. If a rusher leaves the rush line early and the ball is handed off before he/she

crosses the line of scrimmage, he/she may legally rush the quarterback.

b. A penalty may be called if:

  1. The rusher leaves the rush line before the snap crosses the line of scrimmage

    before a handoff or pass – illegal rush (5 yards from the line of scrimmage and rst

    down).

  2. Any defensive player crosses the line of scrimmage before the ball is snapped –

    offsides (5 yards from line of scrimmage and rst down).

  3. Any defensive player not lined up at the rush line crosses the line of scrimmage

    before the ball is passed or handed off – illegal rush (5 yards from the line of scrimmage and rst down).

c. Special circumstances:

  1. Teams are not required to rush the quarterback with the seven second clock in

    effect.

  2. Teams are not required to identify their rusher before the play.

  1. Players rushing the quarterback may attempt to block a pass; however, NO contact can be made with the quarterback in any way. Blocking the pass or attempting to block the pass and then making contact with the passer will result in a roughing the passer penalty.

  2. The offense cannot impede the rusher in any way. The rusher has the right to a clear path to the quarterback, regardless of where they line up prior to the snap. If the “path or line” is occupied by a moving offensive player, then it is the offense’s responsibility to avoid the rusher. Any disruption to the rusher’s path and/or contact will result in an impeding the rusher penalty. If the offensive player does not move after the snap, then it is the rusher’s responsibility to go around the offensive player and to avoid contact.

  3. A sack occurs if the quarterback’s ags are pulled behind the line of scrimmage. The ball is placed where the quarterback’s feet are when ag is pulled.

    a. A safety is awarded if the sack takes place in the offensive team’s end zone.

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XV. Flag Pulling

  1. A legal ag pull takes place when the ball-carrier is in full possession of the ball.

  2. Defenders can dive to pull ags but cannot tackle, hold or run through the ball-carrier when pulling ags.

  3. It is illegal to attempt to strip or pull the ball from the ball-carrier’s possession at any time.

  4. If a player’s ag inadvertently falls off during the play, the player is down immediately upon possession of the ball and the play ends. The ball is placed where the ag lands.

  5. A defensive player may not intentionally pull the ags off of a player who is not in possession of the ball.

  6. Flag guarding is an attempt by the ball-carrier to obstruct the defender’s access to the ags by stiff arming, dropping the head, hand, arm or shoulder or intentionally covering the ags with the football jersey.s

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XVI. Formations

XVII. Unsportsmanlike Conduct

  1. Offenses must have a minimum of one player on the line of scrimmage (the center) and up to four players on the line of scrimmage. The quarterback must be off the line of scrimmage.

    a. One player at a time may go in motion 1-yard behind and parallel to the line of scrimmage. b. No motion is allowed toward the line of scrimmage.

  2. Movement by a player who is set or a player who runs toward the line of scrimmage while in motion is considered a false start.

  3. The center must snap the ball with a rapid and continuous motion between his/her legs to a player in the back eld, and the ball must completely leave his/her hands.

  1. If the eld monitor or referee witnesses any acts of intentional tackling, elbowing, cheap shots, blocking or any unsportsmanlike act, the game will be stopped and the player will
    be ejected from the game. The decision is made at the referee’s discretion. No appeals will be considered. FOUL PLAY WILL NOT BE TOLERATED!

  2. Offensive or confrontational language is not allowed. Of cials have the right to determine offensive language. If offensive or confrontational language occurs, the referee will give one warning. If it continues, the player or players will be ejected from the game.

  3. Players may not physically or verbally abuse any opponent, coach or of cial.

  4. Ball-carriers MUST make an effort to avoid defenders with an established position.

  5. Defenders are not allowed to run through the ball-carrier when pulling ags.

6. Fans

must also adhere to good sportsmanship as well:

7. Fans

are required to keep elds safe and kids friendly:

  1. Yell to cheer on your players, not to harass of cials or other teams.

  2. Keep comments clean and profanity free.

  3. Compliment ALL players, not just one child or team.

  1. Keep younger kids and equipment such as coolers, chairs and tents a minimum of 10 yards off the eld in the end zone area.

  2. Stay in the end zone area, not between elds.

  3. Dispose of ALL trash in designated trash cans.

8. Unsportsmanlike conduct penalties:

a. Defense + 10 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down b. Offense - 10 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

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XVIII. Penalties

Defensive pass interference

Automatic rst down

Holding

Automatic rst down

Stripping

+10 yards and automatic rst down

Screening, blocking or running with the ball

-10 yards and loss of down

Charging

-10 yards and loss of down

Flag guarding

-10 yards and loss of down

Defensive unnecessary roughness

+10 yards and automatic rst down

Defensive Unsportsmanlike conduct

+10 yards and automatic rst down

Offside

+5 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down

Illegal rush (Starting rush from inside 7-yard marker)

+5 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down

Illegal ag pull (Before the receiver has the ball)

+5 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down

Roughing the passer

+5 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down

Taunting

+5 yards from line of scrimmage and automatic rst down

Offensive unnecessary roughness

-10 yards and loss of down

Offensive unsportsmanlike conduct

-10 yards and loss of down

Offside / false start

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

Illegal forward pass (Any pass received or lands behind the line of scrimmage or throwing a pass after crossing the line of scrimmage)

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

Offensive pass interference

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

Illegal motion (More than one person moving)

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

Delay of game

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

Impeding the rusher

-5 yards from line of scrimmage and loss of down

i. General

  1. The referee will call all penalties.

  2. Referees determine incidental contact that may result from normal run of play.

  3. All penalties will be assessed from the line of scrimmage, except as noted. (Spot fouls)

  4. Only the team captain or head coach may ask the referee questions about rule clari cation and interpretations. Players may not question calls.

  5. Games may not end on a defensive penalty unless the offense declines it.

  6. Penalties are assessed live ball then dead ball. Live ball penalties must be assessed before play is considered complete.

  7. Penalties will be assessed half the distance to the goal yardage when the penalty yardage is more than half the distance to the goal.

ii. Defensive spot fouls

iii. Offensive spot fouls

iv. Defensive penalties

v. Offensive penalties

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