This space will provide clarifications during the season to common questions that may arise.
* On any long snap play (punt, PAT, field goal), there shall be NO defensive player over the center.
7th and 8th Grade Defense New Clarification
Defensive Tackles must be in a three or four point stance. Defensive Tackles (including Nose Tackles) must be heads up on the offensive lineman nearest them. Defensive Ends may be in a two, three or four point stance. The defensive line must be set before the ball is snapped. Once the Offensive line is set; the Defense Line is not allowed to adjust their alignment or playing position.
Teams may use the standard four (4) or five (5) person front with the defensive tackles head up on the offensive linemen across from them. Within a rotation, a defensive line must stay in either a four- or five-man formation.
In a five-man front, the defensive tackles can switch the alignment over the offensive guards OR the offensive tackles, within the same 6 play rotation.
As long as the defensive front is balanced, meaning both defensive tackles are either over offensive guards or offensive tackles, then switching within the 6 play rotation is allowed.
Head First Tackles - ILLEGAL
Using the top of the helmet, with the face down, to make initial contact on an opposing player while attempting to make a tackle is illegal. Head tackles, or high tackles (tackling the head) is also illegal. However, tackles in which the face side of the helmet is used to make initial contact and are below the head level are legal. Referees judge the legality of this type of tackle by the location of the hit.
Section 8.12 of our Universal Rules states the following –
No intentional helmet to helmet contact is permitted. The penalty for failure to comply with this rule shall be ten (10) yards; plus an automatic first down if the on the defense or loss of down if on the offense.
Section 8.12 will be modified to read as follows –
No intentional and/or excessive helmet to helmet contact is permitted. The penalty for failure to comply with this rule shall be fifteen (15) yards (10 yards for 80-yard field); plus, an automatic first down if the on the defense or loss of down if on the offense. The Player committing the foul will sit out a minimum of TWO (2) plays and is to be coached on correcting their technique prior to returning to the game. A second personal foul call for the same player in the same game will result in the Player being ejected from the game. Any Player ejected from a game for TWO (2) helmet to helmet contact personal fouls will also be disqualified from competing in the next game.
A player receiving any other personal foul penalty will be removed from the game for at least TWO (2) plays. The Player shall be permitted to return only when the Head Coach is satisfied the Player has been properly coached to correct their technique prior to returning to the game.