Some Basic Rules of American Football

In the USA and Canada, people refer to American Football as simply “football.” The addition of the word “American” before ‘football’ is to help people differentiate it from association football. Some people also call it gridiron. And unlike soccer, the game is more about gaining territory or scoring points. After stepping onto the American football pitch, the teams battle for every inch they can take from the opposing team. They also work to defend the field behind them and invade the pitch in front of them.

The goal of each team is to get enough ground so that they can easily score a field goal or a touchdown. Each team should have eleven players on the pitch at a time. The game takes place in a rectangular shaped field with a goalpost on each end.

The teams

In American football, two teams play against each other. Each team should have 11 players and any team that extends the number has to be penalized. Unlimited substitution is allowed but players only enter the field after the play is stopped or the ball is dead. Again, every team should have defense players, offense players and specialized players (the special team).

The offense team refers to the team in possession of the ball or the one passing the ball forward. Meanwhile, the other team is considered the defense team. The defense team uses its defense players to stop the advancement of the other team.

Starting the Game

The game starts when a player from one team kicks off the ball to another player. The referee and the team captains assemble at the center of the pitch, where the referee tosses a coin to identify the kicking team. Winners of the coin toss have the chance of starting the game by kicking the ball to other team members.