When playing football or watching it, you’ll find that there are four quarters to the game. There’s a halftime break between the second and third quarter, and that’s where you’ll find the all famous halftime show when it comes to the Super Bowl.

If by chance the game is at a draw after the four quarters, the game is extended. It’s only extended for a small period of fifteen minutes. However, it doesn’t have to go for the full fifteen minutes. The team that scores first will win. It can take roughly three to four hours to complete a full game. The clock is technically stopped by teams when an incomplete pass is thrown, they run out of bounds or a team calls a time out. This extends the game time.

Each two minute warnings has the clock frozen as well, and these are done two minutes right before the end in both the second and fourth quarter. You’ll find that time outs can be done three times in every half.

A Little about Offense: On the NFL roster there is a max of fifty-three people. However, you’ll find that only eleven players are ever permitted on the field at once. There are three teams within a team on the NFL roster, and that’s the offense, defense, and the special teams. You’ll find that each has specialized positions, but they also have different sets of skills. Taking a look at offense, their job is to carry the ball from one side of the field to the other. They need to get it on their opponent’s side, and to do this they’ll run forward holding the bar or pass it to someone else. There are some basic positions that you should know.  

The Quarterback: Commonly referred to as QB, you’ll find this is one of the most well-known positions on the team. They can also be called the field general. In football, the quarterback is like the leader.

Receivers: they have to run down the field, catching the ball after the QB has thrown it. It all depends on where they’re placed, but they can be tight ends, referred to as LTE/RTE, or they can be a wide receiver (WR).

Offensive Linemen: They’re meant to block people from getting to the running backs. They do the same for the QB. There are individual positions though, such as Tackles (LT/RT), Center, and Guards (LG/RG). When the Center, they’re in the middle of the line. He brings the ball up, hiking it to the QB. Guards will then flank the center, and outside of the guards is where you’ll find the Tackles. There will be two tackles and two guards for each team.

Running Backs: They’re meant to get the ball from the QB. Then they take it, running up the field. There are different types of running backs. There is halfback (HB), fullback (FB), and tailback (TB). It all depends on the formation.

A Little about Defense: When a team doesn’t have possession of the ball during the game, then they’re on defense. This is where they’ll then try to prevent the other side from scoring. These players are going to tackle the other players on the other team, trying to get the ball back. There are basic positions for this to happen.

Defensive Linemen: These are meant to put pressure on the QB for the other team, and they’re also meant to block running backs. You’ll have three to four defensive linemen on a team. They have individual positions as well such as Nose Tackle (NT), Tackle (LDT/RDT), and Ends (LE/RE). When you’re dealing with ends, they’re going to be found lined on the outside. They run around the offensive tackles. The Nose Tackle will be over the football, and tackle will be put across from the guards. They try to cut into the offensive line.

Cornerbacks (CB): They’re meant to prevent WRs from breaking the passes and taking the ball.

Linebackers: There may be four linemen, but there are two outside linebackers (OLB). There is also a middle linebacker (MLB). With three linemen, there will be two outside and two inside (ILB). They back up the linemen while also covering the receivers. They’ll even have runners in the group during some plays.

Safeties: Deep behind other defense players, you’ll find the Safeties. They’re meant to prevent a long pass or even a run. When dealing with a strong safety, they’ll be aligned on the side that has a lot of offensive players occupying it. Free safety will have a middle position that’s deep.

A Little about Special Teams: Special teams are important to the game as well. When a team is chosen to kick the ball, you’ll find that the special team will take over this job. You’ll find that you have the team’s kickers, players who run down the field to tackle people, and even the offensive line. You need to know about these positions as well.

The Placekicker: The placekicker is meant to kick the ball into the goalposts so that they can score points for their team. They also are responsible to kick the ball to the opposing team when the game is started.

Returner: This is right during a kickoff or punt, and they have to catch the ball, running it back as far as they can. The point is to try to score a touchdown when a return is issued. Paddling can help improve hand strength, check out iRocker SUPs Compared to other SUP boards, in case you are interested.

Punter: This player will free kick the ball, but only if the team he is playing for can’t advance the ball down the field.

About the Actual Movement  You still need to know how the ball is moved throughout the game. When it begins, a coin will be flipped. This decides what team will have the opening kickoff. The kickoff is just the start because then they have to battle to see who will take position from the opening kickoff. This means that they’re trying to see who will get the ball. There are different ways this can happen.

Taking Possession of the Ball: Here are all of the ways that a team can take possession of the ball.

Safety: A player can be tackled at the end zone, and this is called safety. This way the other team will receive the ball by getting a free kick.

Turnover on Downs: when the offensive team can’t advance the ball ten yards in four downs, then the ball is surrendered to the other team.

Receiving a Kickoff: After the other team scores the opposing team will receive a kickoff. This is also done in each half right at the beginning.

Turnover: When a ball is thrown by a QB and then picked off by the other team it is a turnover. It can also be when a ball is dropped and then recovered by the other team.

Punt: With a punt, the defensive team is preventing the offensive team from moving ten yards in three downs. The offense team will then punt or use free kicks to get the other team on the third down.

Tackling the Most Confusing Concept:

American football is confusing to most people, but you’ll find that the distance and down system can leave many people bewildered. It’s not as confusing as it may seem at first. Four attempts or downs are awarded to teams that take the football into their possession.

They can then try to move the ball, and their goal is to move it ten yards. If they’re able to move it at least ten yards within those four downs, then they’ll get another set so that they can go at least another ten yards if they can. It will continue on like this.

After each play, the officials will need to then determine how many yards a team has either gained or lost after that play. That’s how the line of scrimmage is determined, and it is a line that is imaginary, but it cuts the field. It shows where the offensive team will start on the next play.

There’s a ten hard long chain handled by a team of officials sitting sideline, and it shows the ten yard mark that the team will need to reach to get the first down. This chain can be brought onto the field when there’s a close play. It’ll help to measure the distance. They’ll measure between the ten yard mark and the ball. It can be close. The nose of the ball just needs to touch the bar that the chain is attached to.

The team can choose to go for it. They can also choose to use their fourth down, and then they have to either reach that ten yard mark or they’re forced to surrender the ball. This isn’t how it goes most of the time.

They’ll usually choose to punt the ball instead, which forces the opposing team to cover a greater distance and they back up the opposing team. The receiving team has the choice to return that punt. To do this they have to catch it and then proceed to run down the field with it. The team that kicks hopes to kick the ball down, and then they try to tackle the kick returner that belongs to the receiving team. They need to do this before he can come back down.