Super Bowl for Dummies

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Its crunch time!

With just 1 day left until Super Bowl, a game better known for expensive commercials and halftime performances, I am still trying to get my head around the actually game.

In a first for Super Bowl, this year teams will have to brave the outdoor, cold weather conditions of New Jersey at the MetLife Stadium. Lets just say the weather in February on the East coast can be one hell of a bitch.

Bruno Mars joins the half time honor role next to artists such as Beyoncé, Madonna, Prince, The Rolling Stones and U2. Red Hot Chili Peppers will also join Mars up on stage during what is usually the most watched musical event of the year. Last year, according to Dateline 108.4 million viewers tuned in just in the US.

As someone now residing in America, I think its only fair that I take in all aspects of the culture- one being NFL. Now in the past I have gone to pubs or watched games on the couch with a bunch of people but for me it was more about the atmosphere. I feel it is now time to have some kind of inkling to what’s on in what I can only best described as organized chaos.

Bare with me it’s confusing…

So here is the Dumbass Guide to NFL Rules

The Objective

Scoring as many touchdowns as possible at the opponents end zones

Who starts?

At beginning of game, captains and the referee meet at the center of field for coin toss. The visiting team will call heads or tails. Denver is considered the home team so Seahawks will call.

The Lowdown

–       2 teams, 11 men, 1 dream (I may have added that last one)

–       4 quarters

–       15 minutes long

–       60 minutes of play

You may ask to yourself, why is Sunday allocated as football DAY, not hour. Stopping the clock is the sneaky culprit. These are for injuries, those fantastic commercials and penalties. Not to mention time outs; its like watching naughty a two year old ; time out after time out

Each team has an offence and defense crew. When they are in possession of the ball they will send their offence crew on field while the defense crew kick back.

The quarterback (or if you have ever watch a teen romantic comedy, the one usually portrayed at the big man on campus) he is the playmaker.

The Offensive

–       Quarterback. The one who hells HUT HUT

–       The Centre

–       2 Offensive Guards

–       2 Offensive tackles

–       Running Back

–       Wide Receiver

–       Tight End


FUN FACT– the use of HUT comes from the Roman Centurions used to communicate when to execute a command.


The Defense

The defense crew’s job is to stop the offense of the rival team advancing with the ball towards the end zone.

Play- the ball is in play until it is knocked to the ground by a tackle or a touchdown.

Scrimmage- a scrimmage occurs where the last play was. Players line up along an imaginary line and cannot cross until the ball is in play (this is called the snap). The opposing team will then come in and try moving the ball away from the goal

The 411 and Lingo

Playing Field = 100 Yards (If there was a bucket of crispy friend chicken at even the 10 yard line, you wouldn’t see me running)

End zone- red section at each end of field, i.e. nearly time to take off your shirt and cheer.

Goal line- Goal line is where end zone meets playing field. Once past that line it is a touchdown

End line- Goal posts also sit on this line


Down and Distance

Now the important shit. If you cant understand this then you may as well give up now.

Just joking….but seriously.

A down is a play. From the time the ball is put in play or for those higher achievers, snapped, to the time the play is whistled by the officials, this is consider one down. They have 4 downs to move 10 yards. If they successful do this, they get another 4 downs to move another 10 yards. That is called getting a first down.

If they don’t make the 10 yards in 4 downs, the possession of the ball is handed over.


Methods of Scoring (and no I don’t mean in a bar)

Touchdown- 6 points

Where a player carries the ball across the goal line or catches a pass in the end zone.

Extra Point Conversion

-The team is given a chance to add 1 or 2 more points after a touchdown.

-1 Point is given if they kick ball through goal posts after snapping it from the two-yard line.

-2 Points given if they successfully run or pass the ball into the end zone from two yard line.

-If unsuccessful they get no extra points.


Field Goal- 3 points

Usually attempted in a fourth-down situation if they are close enough for the kicker to score through the goal posts.

Safety- 2 point

Tackling an opponent possessing the ball in his own end zone. This is scored by the defense

Confused? Me too!

This is just a very basic breakdown after doing some reading. Of course there are many more tactics and finer details when it comes to the game but this is something to start you off with. Think of it as Super Bowl 101.

Kickoff is at 6:30pm (ET) Sunday 2nd February on FOX.


Now a little reward for all that studying

Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl


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