Rules for Flag Football
PRACTICES & GAMES:
- Practice starts no earlier than the second week of August
- Games start the Saturday after Labor Day through the last Saturday in October (8 weeks)
- Suggested to have no more than two practices per week, one hour each maximum. (This does not include practice time on Saturdays.)
- Games are 40 minutes long running clock, two 20-minute halves, and 5-minute half time.
- Each “GAME” includes a 15-minute warm-up before the game.
- No score is kept and there are no standings.
- Equal play time for each child. Every child must have the opportunity to touch the ball at least once per game.
- The “Official Time” will be kept by the home team for all games being played at that time.
- The “Home” team is responsible for providing a volunteer “referee”.
- The Head Coach of each team is responsible for making sure all other rules are followed as listed below.
- Games will be across a field: 50 yards long by 20 yards wide WITHOUT ENDZONES.
- Fields will be marked by colored cones.
- Opening possession is determined by a coin toss. Second half possession goes to the team that LOST the coin toss.
- Each team will start their possession from the 5 Yard Marked “X” placed on each field.
- Each team has 4 downs to get a 1st down by crossing mid-field. If the team on offense crosses midfield then that team has 4 more downs to score a touchdown.
- Any defensive player that is going to blitz must line up 10 yards off the ball. The remaining defensive players not blitzing can line up on the ball.
- There will be “NO RUN ZONES” 5 yards from the end zone. Teams MUST pass in these zones to avoid short yardage running situations.
- Players “down” in their own end zone lose a down and the ball is replaced at the previous spot for the next play.
- Teams must play 5 players at all times. Each team will have between 6 and 10 players on it. Teams may substitute freely.
- Negative yards will only happen due to an infraction. This means that if a player runs backwards and has a flag taken away then the ball will be spotted at the original line of scrimmage.
RULES OF THE GAME:
- Flags must be worn on the OUTSIDE of the jersey and on each side of the body and the rear at all times. Players must leave the field to correct so play is not slowed down.
- NO INTENTIONAL CONTACT IS ALLOWED AT ANY TIME, blocking, shielding, pushing, shoving will result in automatic 1st down, as listed below. A player will receive a warning on the first offense. The second offense will result in the player sitting on the bench for the remainder of the game. Further action may be pursued if child consistently causes intentional contact.
- Each team must start the play 30 seconds from the time the ball is spotted.
- Players on defense must be at least 1 yard from the line of scrimmage at the start of each play.
- After a player’s flag is pulled, the player that pulled the flag must stop where they are and raise the flag in the air.
- Quarterback CANNOT run the ball; however a Quarterback can receive the ball if handed off to another player.
- Handoffs and tosses behind the line of scrimmage are allowed.
- NO LATERALS OR PASSES AFTER THE LINE OF SCRIMMAGE.
- Players may “spin” or “juke” with the ball but they are not allowed to dive for yardage.
- There are NO FUMBLES. All balls dropped to the ground result in the ball being dead and the next play beginning. Any incomplete pass goes back to the original line of scrimmage. Any dropped ball (fumble) after the line of scrimmage results in the ball being dead at the spot where the ball was dropped.
- The ball is spotted where the ball carrier’s feet are when the flag is pulled OR where the ball carrier is when the fumble occurs.
- A player taking the ball from the QB behind the line of Scrimmage can pass; however, the 10 yard blitzing rule no longer applies.
- Shovel passes are allowed if they are in a forward manner behind the line scrimmage.
- Play is ruled “dead” when:
- The ball hits the ground.
- The ball carrier’s flag is pulled.
- The ball carrier steps out of bounds.
- A touchdown.
- The ball carrier’s knee or arm hits the ground.
- The ball carrier’s flag falls out.
- The receiver catches the ball while in possession of one or no flag(s).
- Inadvertent whistle.
- Pass Interference: 5 paces plus replay down.
- Offside: 5 paces plus replay down.
- Illegal Contact: (holding or blocking, intentional physical contact) 5 paces and automatic 1st down.
- Illegal Rush: (blitzing inside of the 10 yard offset) 5 paces and replay down.
- Flag Guarding: (using hand to stop or clothing to prevent flag pull) 10 paces and loss of down.
- Offensive Pass Interference: (pushing off) 5 paces and loss of down.
- Delay of Game: 5 paces and loss of down.
- Illegal Contact: (holding or blocking, intentional physical contact) 5 paces and loss of down.
- Illegal forward pass: 5 paces and loss of down.
- Illegal diving: 5 paces and loss of down.