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Football

  1. Unless you are on the 50-yard line, the yard line belongs to either yourself (your team) or your opponent. The yard lines between your defensive end zone (the end zone you want to keep your opponent out of) and the 50-yard line and your yard lines. If the other team has the ball 30 yards from your end zone, they are on your 30-yard line. If they are 70 yards away, they are on their own 30-yard line.
  2. First down occurs with change of possession of the ball, or when a team moves forward 10 yards toward its scoring end zone from where it began. A team is then given four more plays to move forward another 10 yards. If it does not do so (each play is numbered consecutively) in four downs, the other team is given the ball (given possession) and it is first down for them.
  3. The red zone is the final 20 yards of the playing field before the end zone. It is considered a critical area of the field, although it is not marked on the field.
  4. A rush is the action that occurs when defenders try to get the quarterback.
  5. Defenders cover receivers by trying to stay with them and prevent them from catching passes.
  6. Football evolved from soccer and rugby around the turn of the 20th century. It was a kicking game until 1912, when the value of a touchdown was raised to 6 pounds, making it the most rewarding way to score.
  7. The huddle is the meeting on the field that is held by the 11 players before the play begins. On offense, the huddle is run by the quarterback. Huddles can be set up many ways, in a semicircle or perhaps with the quarterback facing all of his teammates. Most quarterbacks like to have the huddle so they are facing forward to make it easier to visualize the play.
  8. Quarterbacks can change the play call at the LOS by calling an audible, which is usually a color, some numbers, words, or series of words that signal the play has been changed.
  9. Different penalties cost different amounts some costing yards, some costing downs, some costing both.
  10. The defense is divided into three levels. Those players on the line of scrimmage (LOS), including the outside linebackers, are on Level 1. Those lined up about five yards off of the LOS, including the inside linebackers, are at Level 2. The defensive backs who line up behind the linebackers are at Level 3.
  11. There are two outside linebackers or either one middle linebacker or two inside linebackers. The guys in the middle are more responsible for stopping the run than the pass. And one of the guys in the middle calls the plays for the defense.
  12. A wedge is a wall of big players who are supposed to form a blocking wall in front of the kick returner. The players get into a formation that resembles a "V," or a wedge. The idea is to throw blocks on the kickoff coverage team in order to spring the kick returner loose for a big return.
  13. Special teams play about 17 percent of all plays but coaches look upon them as being equal in value to offense and defense. Part of the reason is because special teams plays either involve potential points or a large exchange of yardage.
  14. College football sounds different, looks different and is different. There are even a couple of different rules. It is the same game as professional football, but there is more pageantry.
  15. Each team plays 16 games per season, two against each team in its division. Most games are played on Sundays, but there is one game a week on Monday night which has a playoff-type atmosphere because the television audience is so big.

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