Football Terminology

Wednesday, July 18, 2018 - 10:30
Player Liaison

Understanding sports today is more complex than just knowing how to play, it also involves knowing the language of the sport being played. Each sport has its own unique language when it comes to describing rules and plays. Hockey has “slap shot”, baseball has “outs”, and soccer has “headers”. Now those three terms are fairly self-explanatory and people can get the gist of what they mean. But when it comes to football, there is some terminology that is a bit confusing to people who are new to the game.

In this article, I am going to do my very best to break down and explain some of the most common terminology used in football. I ask you to please bear with me as some of the explanations of the terms might still seem a bit confusing and if you have any further questions, please feel free to give our office a call or use trusty old google to better break the terminology down.

End zone: The area at each end of the field where a touchdown is scored.

Huddle: When the players on the field come together to discuss strategy between plays. On offense, the quarterback relays the plays in the huddle.

Incompletion: A forward pass that falls to the ground because no receiver could catch it, or a pass that a receiver dropped or caught out of bounds. Interception: A pass that’s caught by a defensive player, ending the offense’s possession of the ball.

Kickoff: A free kick that puts the ball into play. A kickoff is used at the start of each half and after every touchdown and successful field goal.

Line of scrimmage: An imaginary line that extends from where the football is placed at the end of a play to both sides of the field. Neither the offense nor the defense can cross the line until the football is put into play again.

Punt: A kick made when a player drops the ball and kicks it while it falls toward his foot. A punt is usually made on a fourth down when the offense must surrender possession of the ball to the defense because it couldn’t advance 10 yards.

Sack: When a defensive player flags the quarterback behind the line of scrimmage for a loss of yardage.

Touchdown: A score, worth six points, that occurs when a player in possession of the ball crosses the plane of the opponent’s goal line; when a player catches the ball while in the opponent’s end zone.

With grasps of the basic football terminology above, you are well on your way to becoming a football expert! Happy flagging!