American Football in the National Football League/The Basics

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Words To Know[edit | edit source]

  • Offense - The team that has possession of the ball
    • Center - This player snaps the ball to the quarterback
    • Offensive Linemen - These players are in front of the quarterback, and they protect him from being sacked by the defensive linemen
    • Quarterback - The player on the offense that throws the ball to the receivers
    • Running Back - The main offensive player that runs with the ball
    • Tight End - This player catches the ball, and they also help protect the running back from being tackled
    • Wide Receiver - The offensive players that catch the ball after it's thrown
  • Defense - The team that is trying to stop the offense from scoring
    • Cornerback - Cornerbacks cover receivers, and they try to block or intercept passes
    • Defensive Linemen - These players try to sack the quarterback, and they also try to strip the ball from the quarterback's hands
  • Special Teams - This is any play that is not an offensive play
    • Kicker - This player kicks the field goals, kickoffs, and on-side kicks
    • Punter - This player punts the ball to the other team

Offense[edit | edit source]

The goal on offense is to advance the football until you reach the opponent's endzone. Normally, you will have 4 downs or tries to move the ball 10 yards. Once the ball has gone 10 yards, you will get a new set of downs. A quarterback can advance the ball by throwing the ball or handing the ball to a player who then tries to run for yards.

Defense[edit | edit source]

The goal for the defensive players is to stop the offense from advancing the ball. They do this by blocking passes, tackling rushers, and trying to make the offense lose possession of the ball. The ways the defense can force the offense to lose possession are forcing fumbles, or they could intercept a pass.