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All you need to know about American football



American football

American football is a distinctive and different game from other sports, it consists of two opponents teams facing on the floor of a rectangular stadium planted with natural or artificial grass, and the length of 110 meters, and the width of 49 meters, and confrontation so that the interest in the number of points paid is not as much Attention to the amount of stadium space that is controlled by each team. During American football, players ’movements are tracked, and the distances traveled by each team are measured. The outcome of the game is determined by the victory of the team that collects the largest space.

History of American football

The origins of American football go back to the beginnings of the nineteenth century as defined by the Association of Football Professionals, where it was practiced in universities without any basic rules governing play, or the presence of organized penalties to control the formation of teams, and the method of play was the cruelty of the life suffered by students Which caused it to be violent, and as a result it was banned from some universities, then its popularity appeared at the beginning of the twenty-first century.

American football game rules

The basics of the game can be divided and mentioned as follows :

  • Collecting points during the match period is the main objective of the game.
  • The clock is stopped between the game runs, which may be divided into four or two runs, where the run time when playing in high schools is 12 minutes, while in college matches it is 15 minutes.
  • The potential situation for reimbursement is referred to as the field situation, and the team that has had the most good field situation usually wins, meaning that it has captured the most chances for reimbursement.
  • The numbers of the playing shirts are distributed among the players within specific ranges that indicate the player’s position on the team, whether it is in the back, defense, attack, etc.

How to calculate points

Points in American football are calculated according to specific laws, and they are as follows :

  • Six points: 6 points are counted for the team if the players advance the ball until they cross the finish line in the opposing team’s area without stopping.
  • Three points: 3 points are calculated for the team in the event that the team player throws the ball over the goalpost, which is represented by the presence of two columns at the end line of the team area, when he is close to the end and in a position to throw the ball, and the goal recorded in this way is called the field goal.
  • One point: An additional point is awarded to the team if the player throws the ball and crosses the goal of the opposing team.
  • Two points: Two points are calculated for the team if the ball is run towards the finish line at the opposing team’s field again, but this movement is rare and difficult to occur, and the team can earn two points by drawing the ball from the opposing attacking team in the finish line.

The team that scores the most points at the end of the last half is considered the winner of the game, and in the event that the points are equal between the two teams, an additional run is started until one of the two teams wins.


Each American football team includes 45-50 players (including reserve players), while on the field there are 11 main players who play together at the same time, and each player has their own position in attack or defense, and players specialize in experience The adults prevent the opposing team from reaching their stadium, while the smaller players run, run or catch the ball, while the medium-sized players are able to perform the tasks of other players (running the ball or defending).

Duration of the match

The duration of a game in American football is one hour (60 minutes), it is divided into two halves; each half is divided into two halves, each is called a quarter-time and a quarter-hour duration (15 minutes), while the break between the first and second half is 12 minutes. , And two minutes with the end of the first and third quarters, and the timing of the match begins with the starting stroke, and 40 seconds are specified for each team to catch the ball, and the team that fails to do so is punished, and the match is paused in the event that a penalty is called or the player of one of the two teams has gone out of the stadium boundaries or there is Injury, provided that the game is resumed by order of a referee Match, and sometimes the two teams resort to an additional run of 15 minutes in the case of a tie the two teams in the game during halftime, and is determined by the team that would take the ball first through a method of throwing the coin, the team that scores the point first is the winning team in the game.

Free kick

A free kick is one of the laws of American football, and it occurs when the attacking player is stopped in his touch line, and the direction of the game is changed, and the team that was stopped after that plays a free kick to the opposing team, and the person who declares kicking this strike is the match rule, and it is required In order to successfully complete the process, all the team players must be at least four and a half meters behind the ball, and there must be at least four players from the team on each side of the stadium.


The American Football game is managed by a group of referees, who generally range from 4 referees to a crew of 8, and sometimes the match may take place under the supervision of three referees, in exceptional circumstances such as delay in travel, an emergency, or Injury of a member of the refereeing team, and the match referees seek to keep the game regular and free from randomness, by following the laws and regulations mentioned in the American Football Referees’ Guide, which have been published by the International Football Association and can be abbreviated as “IAFOA”, and excluded Some items of this guide in the case of matches International (non-local) associations, that is, games that take place between clubs from different countries, and the competent sports authorities strive to encourage the official bodies and national federations to use the provisions of the referees guide in the various games under their management.

Mistakes and penalties

The rule of American football is a set of laws and regulations, and everyone who violates these laws and those who make mistakes is subject to a punishment that is determined based on the type of error committed, and the match rule determines the punishment by throwing a yellow (flag) cloth on the floor of the match court And players know that something went wrong, and here comes a mention of the most famous mistakes and penalties in American football :

  • Shear error: This error is represented by a player attacking another player from the back or on an area below the waist, and often this occurs when the attacking player tries to stop the defense player by hitting him from the back, and the penalty for this error is the return of the team 13.7 meters to the back.
  • Defender blocking error: This error occurs when an offensive player attempts to confront a defensive player while the defender already participates with another offensive player, and this error causes the opposing team to lose 13.7 meters.
  • Game delay error: This error occurs if the attacking team delays sending the ball more than 40 seconds, and the penalty for this error is the team losing 4.6 meters.
  • Defensive infiltration: This error occurs when one of the team’s defenders crosses the line, reaching the striker before the ball starts, and the penalty for this error is the team losing 4.6 meters.
  • Grab the player’s helmet: This error occurs when one of the team players removes the helmet of another competing player, and the penalty for this error is the team’s loss of 13.7 meters.
  • Not reporting: This error occurs when substitutions for the referee of the match are not reported, and the penalty for the team is 4.6 meters.

American football equipment

American football requires a set of major equipment, and here is mentioned :

  • The Oval Ball: An oval shaped ball is used in American football, and it is brown, with a length from edge to edge of 28 cm, and its circumference from the middle is 55 cm, and a weight of 450 g.
  • Helmet: The helmet protects the player’s face and head, and includes jaw pads, chin strap, integrated face mask, mouth protector, and shock absorbers that reduce the impact force of the ball.
  • Shoulder pads: This stomach is placed on the shoulders of players, giving them a greater view of the shoulders, and it consists of an external plastic surface, and a foam layer that absorbs shocks.
  • Arm Cushions: This piece protects the players’ arms, and is flexible and lightweight.
  • Elbow pads: This piece protects the elbows of the players, and is secured with a leather strap.
  • Rib Pads: This piece protects players’ internal ribs from injuries, and maintains body temperature.
  • Hip and Bone Pads: This tool is worn under pants, protecting the hip and bones in the lower body.
  • Gloves: Gloves protect players’ fingers and hands, and wearing this tool is optional for players.
  • Fasteners: The bottom of the shoe of the players includes nails known as “the cleats”, which help to create a tenacity on the grass floor of the stadium.
  • The jersey: All American football players appear with a loose oversized outer shirt, made of nylon, and includes the player’s name and number on the team.
  • Pants: All players wear colored nylon pants, with four pockets and pads for protecting bones and hip.
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