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NFL Rules for Beginners – The Super Bowl Guide (PART II)

Super Bowl Guide NFL Rules for Beginners before Super Bowl 50

The GamingZion Super Bowl Guide

  • Why is the quarterback in the NFL so important?
  • What does an NFL offense do?
  • Can the defense score in the NFL?

This is the second part of our Super Bowl Guide discussing the basic NFL Rules For Beginners in order to able to watch and understand Super Bowl 50.

Super Bowl 50 is upon us. This is a special occasion because of the 50th anniversary of the big game, and because of this might be the last time internet betting players will see Peyton Manning, a quarterback legend of the game in action. From the second part of our Super Bowl Guide you can learn why is the position of the quarterback so important as well as all the other players positions and you can also get some basic knowledge of why NFL strategy is so important.

What is a ‘play’ in the NFL? What is a drive?

A play starts when the center snaps the ball from the line of scrimmage to the quarterback and ends when a touchdown is scored, the ball carrier goes down by contact or goes out of bounds or the ball touches the ground after a forward pass attempt without anyone catching it. The sequence of plays called a drive and it ends with scoring or with a change in possession. The game is made from a sequence of drives.

Both units on the field, the offense and the defense get different instructions for every play from the coaches. This is called play calling, and it is made via radio. The offense has 40 seconds to start the play – they get the play call, discuss it in the huddle, maybe alter it and start the play.

Because of this process, and because of the plays are very short, usually 5 to 10 seconds long actions, players standing on the field is usually the picture what you get when switching to an NFL game. But even then, a battle of chess is going on between the coaches and the offense versus the defense. Let’s see what those guys do on the field according to our Super Bowl Guide!

American football NFL positions

Positions in the NFL  (Photo: PA)

The Offense – Super Bowl Guide

The offense’s main job is to move the ball forward by running and/or passing and score points. The NFL is a passing-centered league so, in the NFL the offense is usually designed around the quarterback, as well as in our Super Bowl Guide. They are also very important for online sportsbooks in the US.

The quarterback or QB is the guy who gets the play call, the tactics from the coaches before every down and performs it. Or change it by calling an ’audible’, if he senses that the defense might know what comes next. In Super Bowl 50, you will see Peyton Manning altering the plays, giving orders to his teammates and changing the formation regularly in a game.

The offense also consist the offense-line, the receivers and the running backs. The O-line are the big guys, who has to protect the quarterback. Their battle against the defensive line influences the outcome of the game big time. The receivers are the fellas who catch passes, while the running backs’ job is to move the ball forward simply by running with it. Our Super Bowl Guide also has to mention a hybrid position, the tight end. He usually positioned next to the O-line, and his job is to catch passes and to block defenders too. His role is more and more important in the NFL.

The Defense – Super Bowl Guide

Turnovers in the NFL:

  • Interception
  • Lost fumble
  • Turnover on downs

The defense’s main job is to deny the offense advancing forward and/or forcing turnovers. Turnover is when the ball changes possession. This can be made by an interception – a defender catching a pass intended to a receiver –, or by recovering a fumble – a defender picking up the loose ball from the ground.

The defense consist two main units, the front seven and the secondary or defensive backs. The front seven is further divided into the defensive line and the group of linebackers. The front seven’s primary job is chasing the opposing quarterback, possibly tackling him behind the line of scrimmage (the place where the play started) – this is called a sack – and tackling the runners.

A tackle is made when the player in possession of the ball touches the ground with any body parts other than his hands and feet or is stopped from advancing forward. Then the play stops and the offense can start over from the spot where the tackle was made. The secondary (safetys and cornerbacks) has a primary job of tackling receivers and knocking down passes intended to receivers.

Can the defense score in American Football?

Of course. When a defensive player gains possession of the ball by an interception or a recovered fumble he can return it to the opposition’s end zone for a touchdown. Defensive players can also return the ball after extra attempts for 2 points.

When a defender tackles an offensive player in possession of the ball in the offense’s end zone, or forces him out of bounds while in the end zone, that is a safety, which is a 2-point score. After a safety had been scored, the offense has to punt the ball from its own 20-yard line.

Special teams – Super Bowl Guide

Special teams are the units that are on the field when either of the two teams kicks the ball. Usually there are two guys in a team that can kick the ball properly. One of them is the placekicker who carry out kickoffs at the start of each halves and after scoring plays and field goal attempts. The other one is the punter, whose job is to relieve his team by a long, high kick if the offense has problems.

On the other side of the ball a returner is waiting for the kickoff or the punt. His task is to catch the football and return it as far as he can. A touchdown can also be scored by returning the ball to the end zone. Great returners are real stars of special teams.

From the next parts of our Super Bowl Guide, anyone who bet on sports in the EU can learn additional NFL rules for beginners, like officiating including, game clock, challenges and official reviews and the most important fouls of course.


NFL Rules for Beginners – The Super Bowl Guide (PART I)
 
NFL Rules for Beginners – The Super Bowl Guide (PART III)

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