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What is "out of bounds" in the NFL?


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2 minutes ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

But where is the ball spotted? At the receivers feet or at the yard marker the ball was caught at?

 

If it is legal catch (meaning a football move has been made after he catches the ball with possession and both feet in bounds), then it would be spotted where the ball crossed the plane of the sideline, like the Lamar case today. But if the ball takes him out of bounds while making the catch, even if he drags his feet, there is no football move, so it is not a legal catch. Maybe I am wrong again.

2 minutes ago, Rochesterfan said:


 

If he drags his feet in bounds - he does not have to make a football move - he just has to maintain control of the ball through the action of going to the ground.

 

His feet being down in bounds with possession- establishes the marker of where he is.  The action of the catch is completed by maintaining the control through the ground in this case because he was diving.

 

He needs 2 feet down, or a knee, butt, lower leg, anything that counts for establishing the in bound portion and then maintain control to the ground.

 

 

 

But this is what I read:

 

https://www.sportingnews.com/us/nfl/news/nfl-catch-rules-2020-explained/1lvsxrgnc6mf31qllioc0ll80k

 

"A player who makes a catch may advance the ball. A forward pass is complete (by the offense) or intercepted (by the defense) in the field of play, at the sideline, or in the end zone if a player, who is inbounds:

secures control of the ball in his hands or arms prior to the ball touching the ground; and

touches the ground inbounds with both feet or with any part of his body other than his hands; and

after (a) and (b) have been fulfilled, performs any act common to the game (e.g., tuck the ball away, extend it forward, take an additional step, turn upfield, or avoid or ward off an opponent), or he maintains control of the ball long enough to do so. 

 

Notes:

Movement of the ball does not automatically result in loss of control.

If a player, who satisfied (a) and (b), but has not satisfied (c), contacts the ground and loses control of the ball, it is an incomplete pass if the ball hits the ground before he regains control, or if he regains control out of bounds"

 

So I would assume a football move is necessary.

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4 minutes ago, Motorin' said:

 

That's just not how's it written in the NFL rule book, and I've spent too many precious minutes already looking at it tonight 😂


 

I don’t know, but that is how it is taught and when have you ever seen a WR make a catch on the sideline and the mark the ball up field at a spot prior to the catch.

 

I think you just are not finding the right section and are trying way to hard.

 

It is actually called pretty consistently exactly as I have stated and it is exactly what we are taught in clinics.  The biggest difference in lower sports is what establishes in bounds - one foot versus two feet - etc.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, chongli said:

 

If it is legal catch (meaning a football move has been made after he catches the ball with possession and both feet in bounds), then it would be spotted where the ball crossed the plane of the sideline, like the Lamar case today. But if the ball takes him out of bounds while making the catch, even if he drags his feet, there is no football move, so it is not a legal catch. Maybe I am wrong again.

 

But this is what I read:

 

https://www.sportingnews.com/us/nfl/news/nfl-catch-rules-2020-explained/1lvsxrgnc6mf31qllioc0ll80k

 

"A player who makes a catch may advance the ball. A forward pass is complete (by the offense) or intercepted (by the defense) in the field of play, at the sideline, or in the end zone if a player, who is inbounds:

secures control of the ball in his hands or arms prior to the ball touching the ground; and

touches the ground inbounds with both feet or with any part of his body other than his hands; and

after (a) and (b) have been fulfilled, performs any act common to the game (e.g., tuck the ball away, extend it forward, take an additional step, turn upfield, or avoid or ward off an opponent), or he maintains control of the ball long enough to do so. 

 

Notes:

Movement of the ball does not automatically result in loss of control.

If a player, who satisfied (a) and (b), but has not satisfied (c), contacts the ground and loses control of the ball, it is an incomplete pass if the ball hits the ground before he regains control, or if he regains control out of bounds"

 

So I would assume a football move is necessary.


 

Maintains control is the key. 
 

If he catches the ball diving out of bounds and just barely drags both toes as he goes nearly horizontal and catches the ball with even just the tips of his fingers and he never reacts to say tuck the ball in or bring it back at all, but MAINTAINS CONTROL of the ball through ground - it is a catch as maintaining control is the football action. 
 

If as you say - when he lands - if the ball hits the ground or he has to regains control, but is now out of bounds - then it would be incomplete.

 

Completing the action of the catch by going to the ground and maintaining control of the ball is the action required.  If the see any movement - it will be incomplete.

 

Although not OOB - there was a nice example in the GB/NE game where Rodgers threw it to the end zone- his WR caught the ball and took 2 steps as he was tackled from behind.  Even though he took 2 steps and tucked the ball away - all the elements needed - as he was going to the ground - he also had to maintain control through the ground and it was obvious that even though it was tucked away - the ground knocked the ball loose and it hit the ground and was therefore incomplete.

 

 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Rochesterfan said:


 

Maintains control is the key. 
 

If he catches the ball diving out of bounds and just barely drags both toes as he goes nearly horizontal and catches the ball with even just the tips of his fingers and he never reacts to say tuck the ball in or bring it back at all, but MAINTAINS CONTROL of the ball through ground - it is a catch as maintaining control is the football action. 
 

If as you say - when he lands - if the ball hits the ground or he has to regains control, but is now out of bounds - then it would be incomplete.

 

Completing the action of the catch by going to the ground and maintaining control of the ball is the action required.  If the see any movement - it will be incomplete.

 

 

But I am wondering how long he must maintain control for it to be considered a football move. The rule I quoted above states:

 

"after (a) and (b) have been fulfilled, performs any act common to the game (e.g., tuck the ball away, extend it forward, take an additional step, turn upfield, or avoid or ward off an opponent), or he maintains control of the ball long enough to do so. "

 

So if he is landing out of bounds after dragging his feet while maintaining total control of the ball, would that be long enough to be considered a football move according to the above? If he is diving out of bounds to catch the ball (while dragging his feet of course), he doesn't have time for extending it, turning upfield, etc.

 

This is why I honestly liked the old rule of simply having to control the ball at the second both feet (or your second foot) hit the ground. This football move stuff is BS.

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1 hour ago, DrDare said:

This is a frustrating read

 

I know all the answers but choose to not involve myself. Good luck

In the heat of a play I'm right 95% with on field call... but ask me to read it or explain and I crumble

 

I think most posters would say the same, but don't ask me why

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10 hours ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

Then explain why a WR stretching for a catch out of bounds is considered inbounds.


I believe that the player (with two feet in the field of play) becomes an extension of the field. Therefore, a ball thrown and caught out of bounds, will be a catch. 
 

As for the Lamar 1st down, I thought they had added cameras to the down and distance markers to avoid this discussion. And if they haven’t, they should. They’ve added cameras everywhere else. 

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10 hours ago, LeGOATski said:

I feel like it's always been where the ball is when the player steps out of bounds. I thought Jackson had the first down clearly. When Gene explained the rule on the broadcast, it sounded new to me. Seemed to be the opposite of how they've always ruled it, which was consistent with the other rules you mention.

 

The NFL just sucks. Put a damn chip in the ball. It's too easy.

and a buzzer for the 40 second play clock. How can they not figure out delay of game? Do it like the NBA 24 second shot clock. It's not complicated

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39 minutes ago, RobbRiddicksTDLeap said:

As for the Lamar 1st down, I thought they had added cameras to the down and distance markers to avoid this discussion. And if they haven’t, they should. They’ve added cameras everywhere else. 

They did, but this was the far side away from that camera.

 

Also on the whole spotting of the ball when making a toe tap catch it has been said so many times that the player who is the key part. If they have a body part on the ground in bounds after catching a ball outside the field of play, the ball will be spotted at the position when the ball is when they gain possession. If they gain possession when the ball is out of play and they are not on the field of play but can establish back in bounds (in air, but can tap those toes inbounds) the ball will be placed at the position of the ball at that toe tap (last legal play).

 

If the player jumps off the ground and lands out of bounds then the ball spot is where it crosses out of bounds, since there is no other reference point to spot the ball.  The ball is spotted where it goes over the vertical plane of the sideline. (Think where an official marks a punt OOB when it bounces out or goes out in the air)

 

This is a kinda simple rule to play out for the Lamar play. It's where the ball is as it goes over the inside plane of the sideline (since he's in the air). The spot looked pretty good for a split second decision. Officials really do have a tendency to get it right when they aren't told to let replay figure it out.

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14 hours ago, PromoTheRobot said:

I swear there are 15 different rules on what constitutes going out of bounds and where a ball is spotted.  For example:

 

1) Today Lamar extends the ball before stepping out of bounds. Where he lands out of bounds is well past the line of gain. But he's deemed short because (I'm guessing here) the ball broke the plane of the sideline behind the line of gain?

 

However...

 

2) A wide receiver is considered catching a ball inbounds as long as two feet are inbounds, even if the ball is obviously thrown out of bounds.

 

3) Someone can score a TD, even if the ball is held out of bounds outside the pylon, as long as they cross goal line extended.

 

The NFL can't even agree what inbounds and out of bounds are.

Yeah its horrifically inconsistent.  Soccer for example, when the ball is completely over the line it is out of bounds ... period.

Just one of the ways the NFL has overcomplicated the rules.

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2 hours ago, nucci said:

and a buzzer for the 40 second play clock. How can they not figure out delay of game? Do it like the NBA 24 second shot clock. It's not complicated

EXACTLY! If your going to give them a full second when it hits 0, add a damn second to the play clock. It should be delay of game the instant 0 is reached. I would like to see something like a buzzer as well, it would make it more distinguishable for ALL.  

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15 hours ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

If it's so simple why are the rules different in the other two examples I cited, especially being able to score a TD despite holding the ball outside of the pylon?

 

Actually when scoring the ball is not supposed to be outside the pylon

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I think understanding why the rules are the way they are is an important piece of the conversation.

 

The rule is that two feet have to touch in bounds for a completed pass (but where the ball is doesn't mattter) because who wants the referees making a judgement call on if the ball is in bounds?  It would also probably lead to fewer catches / less offense.

 

As far as ball placement when the ball is extended out of bounds, it adds some incentive for a player to stay in bounds if they need to gain extra yardage (e.g for the first yesterday.)  I suppose you could just have the rule always be where the ball is when the players body touches out of bounds, but you will have less contested plays along the sideline.  The rule as it stands is similar to the goal line rule - once the ball crosses the plane of the line, that's where it is out.

 

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6 minutes ago, Captain Caveman said:

 

Actually when scoring the ball is not supposed to be outside the pylon

 

So what happens if you run into the end zone but hold the ball outside of the pylon? Where is it spotted if it isn't a touchdown?

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6 minutes ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

So what happens if you run into the end zone but hold the ball outside of the pylon? Where is it spotted if it isn't a touchdown?

 

You have discovered the Zeno's paradox of NFL out of bounds rules. 

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5 minutes ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

So what happens if you run into the end zone but hold the ball outside of the pylon? Where is it spotted if it isn't a touchdown?

 

I believe it's supposed to be where the ball crosses the plane of the out of bounds line.

 

I will agree that it's confusing - I've never actually seen a player get called out of bounds with the ball out of bounds but the feet in - not sure if the player's body has to touch out of bounds in order for it to actually be out of bounds?

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16 hours ago, PromoTheRobot said:

 

How can you accurately judge where a ball goes out of bounds?

 

How can you accurately judge how quickly the clock operator starts the game or play clock at the right moment? How can you accurately judge where the ball is when a QB dives into a pile on the sneak? How accurately does the headset shut off to the QB at the 15 second mark (or whatever it's supposed to be)? How do you know that the game ball is pumped to the right air pressure? How do you...........................................

 

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