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NFL FLAG LEAGUE RULES

Players

▪ Must have mouthguard in at all times when on the field.

▪ Flags must be a different color from jersey.

▪ Jerseys must be tucked in. No jerseys covering flags.

▪ Flags may NOT be wrapped. Flags are to be used properly. No glueing, taping, etc. NO CHEATING

▪ Must wear shorts with no pockets, or pockets must be taped.

▪ No metal cleats are permitted.

 

Game Format

▪ Field is approx. 30 yards wide and 40 yards long, not including the 6 yard end zones.

▪ Games for all levels are 6 on 6.

▪ Teams of 8-10 players 

▪ Four 10-minute running clock quarters (1 minute break between quarters, 3 minute break at half)

▪ Coin flip determines choice of possession or direction (winning team can elect to defer to the 2nd half). Any team deferring means that the opposing team will automatically receive the ball to start the game, with deferring team receiving the ball to start the second half.

▪ Two 30-second timeouts per half

▪ The clock will only stop for time-outs and injuries (it does not stop for incomplete passes, out of bounds, change of possession)

▪ The clock will also stop in the final 2 minutes of the game if there is an offensive penalty, while the defense is trailing, or vice versa.

▪ If a timeout is called after a touchdown, the clock will not start until the play after the conversion attempt

▪ Teams switch sides at halftime

▪ Overtime (only in the playoffs)– if the score is tied, an overtime period will take place with each team receiving a possession.

▪ Coin flip determines choice of 1st or 2nd possession

▪ Possession begins at the 10 yard line (both teams will go in the same direction)

▪ If a touchdown is scored, a team can elect to go for a 1 or 2 point conversion.

▪ If an interception occurs and is returned for a touchdown on the first possession of an overtime period the game is over.

▪ If an interception occurs the team intercepting the ball can elect to take possession at the 10 yard line, or where the runner is flagged.

▪ If the game is still tied, overtime will be repeated until there is a winner.

▪ Teams alternate first possession each overtime period

 

Basics

▪ Each possession to begin a half, after a score, or after a turnover on downs starts at the 5 yard line

▪ 40 second play clock

▪ The offensive team has three plays to get a first down, then three plays to score once they have crossed mid-field.

▪ Interceptions can be returned, and possession will begin where the defender is flagged 

There are no limits on run plays, so each team has unlimited run plays.

▪ QB has to throw the ball within 7 seconds

▪ If the QB does not release the ball before time expires, it is a sack, with the ball being placed 5 yards back from the previous spot.

▪ If the ball is handed off or tossed in the backfield and the carrier throws the ball after the sack clock has expired, the play will be blown dead and a sack called.

  • A sack can occur in the end zone, with a resulting safety, if the ball is snapped inside of the 5 yard line. Any sack occurring on a play that starts from the 5 yard line will be placed on the 1 foot line. This does not apply at the PreK/K and 1/2 divisions, as there are no safeties in those grades. Any ball dropped in the end zone, flag pulled in the end zone, or sack inside of the 5 yard line will simply have the ball placed at the 1 foot line.

▪ A play will be considered a run play, when the ball carrier crosses the line of scrimmage, or if the flag is pulled before the player throws the ball. A play in which a player takes a hand-off from the quarterback, and then throws a forward pass will be considered a pass play. A fumbled hand-off will be considered a run play. A fumbled exchange between the center and QB will not be considered a run.

▪ Shovel passes are allowed, except in the 5 yard no run zone. Any pass not thrown in an overhand manner, inside the no-run zone will be considered a shovel pass and blown dead, regardless of whether the ball is caught in front or behind the line of scrimmage.

▪ No rushing the QB for Divisions PreK/K and 1/2 - Defensive players cannot cross the line of scrimmage until a handoff has occurred. 

▪ DIVISIONS 3/4, 5/6 AND 7/8: ANY AND ALL PLAYERS MAY RUSH THE QB FROM THE RUSH LINE, WHICH IS 10 YARDS FROM THE LINE OF SCRIMMAGE.

▪ No Direct QB Runs

▪ There are no runs within five yards of the midfield first down, or five yards of the goal line. Exceptions for divisions PreK/K and 1/2 where the “No Run Zone” DOES NOT APPY

▪ One first down at midfield

▪ Ball is placed where the ball is when the flag is pulled

▪ Snapped ball has to pass between the center’s legs

▪ Center cannot take a handoff from the QB

▪ All players are eligible

▪ No leaping (if a player dives, the ball will be spotted where the runner left his feet)

▪ A receiver must have one foot in bounds when making a reception

▪ Only one player can be in motion at the same time

▪ Absolutely no tackling or blocking

▪ A fumbled ball can be caught by the defensive team and advanced, but is dead if it hits the ground and the offense retains possession. No stripping by the defense. Any fumble caused from contact with a defensive player is dead at the spot. Any forward fumble that is caught in the air by an offensive player other than the player who fumbled will be brought back to the spot of the fumble.

▪ A play is dead when:

▪ Flag is pulled

▪ Runner’s knee touches the ground

▪ Runner steps out of bounds

▪ If a player loses his flag then the opposing team must touch him down. 

  • Games cannot end on a defensive penalty 
  • If the offense commits a penalty on the games’ final possession the game is over. 
  •  Each team may have no more than 3 coaches (1 head coach and 2 assistant coaches) on their sideline
  • Coaches are not permitted on the field at the 7th-8th grade divisions.
  • Only 1 coach in the defensive huddle at all Divisions except 7/8 (no coaches on field), and the coach must be to the side of the field at snap of the ball.
  • Two coaches in the offensive huddle in PreK/K and 1/2 Division, only one coach at the 3/4 and 5/6 Divisions.

 

Mercy Rules:

▪ If a team is in front by 25 or more points, they cannot advance an interception. The team will take over possession at their own 5 yard line. 

▪ If a team is up by 25 or more they only have 2 downs to get a first down.

▪ If a team is down by 25 points they will receive 4 downs to gain a first down.

▪ Any team up by 30 or more points will not receive an offensive possession. The losing team will retain possession, and will continue to reset the ball back at the 5 yard line should they not gain a first down.

 

Scoring

  • Touchdowns = 6 points
  • Extra Point (5 yard line) = 1 pt
  • Extra Point (10 yard line) = 2 pts
  • Safety = 2 pts
  • Defensive Extra Point Return = 2 PTS from either 5 yard line or 10 yard line

Penalties:  NO PENALTIES WILL RESULT IN AUTOMATIC 1ST DOWN EXCEPT UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT

Defensive:

▪ Defensive Pass Interference - 10 yard penalty and down over

▪ Illegal Contact (holding, jams, etc.) – 5 yard penalty and down over

▪ Illegal Flag Pull (before player has ball) – 5 yard penalty and down over

▪ Off-sides – 5 yard penalty and replay the down

▪ Illegal Rushing (before a hand-off has occurred) – 5 yard penalty and replay the down

▪ Tackling – 10 yard penalty and down over

▪ Inadvertent tackle – 5 yard penalty (NO DOWN OVER)

▪ Inadvertent tackle From Behind w/clear path to end zone – Automatic Touchdown

▪ Palpably Unfair Act - when referee determines a palpably unfair act deprived a team of a touchdown, or a longer play, a touchdown will be rewarded, or a distance penalty will be determined by the referee after consultation with other officials

▪ Unsportsmanlike conduct – 15 yard penalty and automatic 1st down (possible ejection - automatic ejection for 2nd unsportsmanlike)

▪ Unsportsmanlike conduct will not be tolerated (Rough play, verbal abuse, trash talking, etc. is cause for an ejection)

▪ If an unsportsmanlike tackle occurs when a runner has a “clear-path” to the end zone, the offensive team will be rewarded with a touchdown

▪ Any ejection will cause player to miss next game. Second ejection is grounds for expulsion from the league.

 

Offensive:

▪ Offensive Pass Interference – 10 yard penalty and replay the down

▪ Illegal motion (2 men in motion) – 5 yard penalty and replay the down

▪ False Start – 5 yard penalty, play blown dead

▪ Illegal Forward Pass – 5 yard penalty and loss of down 

▪ Blocking – ball is dead at the spot of the block and a 5 yard penalty

▪ Leaping – ball is dead at the spot

▪ Flag Guarding (including stiff arms) – ball is dead at spot

▪ Unsportsmanlike conduct – 15 yard penalty (possible ejection - automatic ejection for 2nd unsportsmanlike)

▪ Unsportsmanlike conduct will not be tolerated (Rough play, verbal abuse, trash talking, etc. is cause for an ejection)

▪ Delay of Game – clock is stopped and a 5 yard penalty

▪ There is no intentional grounding penalty

League rules may be changed at any time if problems arise due to concerns with safety conditions, sportsmanship, or competitive balance. 

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Laguna Beach Youth Football

Guyer Field (Laguna Beach High School), 625 Park Ave
Laguna Beach, California 92651

Email Us: [email protected]
Phone : 949-637-0992
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