Friday, September 2, 2011

Pigskins & Pearls 101: Putting Points on the Board

A touchdown is scored when the football breaks the plane of the goal line either by a rushing or passing play.  A touchdown is worth 6 points.

After a touchdown, the team has the chance for an extra point(s).  They can choose to go for 1 point or 2 points.  For either, the ball will be placed on three-yard line.  Generally, teams will choose to go for one.  The kicker will come on to kick a "field goal." If the team chooses to go for a two-point conversion, it is scored in the same fashion as a touchdown.

A field goal is worth 3 points.  Teams will kick a field goal when it is a fourth down and they are too far to get guarantee a touchdown.  A successful field goal is scored when the ball clears between the uprights or goalposts.  When deciding whether the team will kick a field goal, the kicker's field goal range will be considered.  A field goal distance is usually 17 yards longer than the line of scrimmage to the goal line - that is the ten yards of the end zone and the seven yards between the long snapper and the holder.  If the line of scrimmage is the 30 yard line, the kick will be a 47 yard kick.  This probably the average distance for most college kickers.  Rarely do you see a kicker consistently kicking 50 yarders.

The last scoring opponent is a safety, worth 2 points.  A safety is scored when the defense tackles a player with the ball in their own end zone.

1 comment:

Sundresses and Smiles said...

I feel so much more educated now--I knew a touchdown was worth 6 points, but didn't know much else! For me, football games are all about getting dressed up and tailgating, shhh!

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