Author Topic: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks  (Read 924 times)

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Offline dammitbobby

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Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« on: October 01, 2022, 05:55:17 PM »
6-3-14-a:
If Team A is in a scrimmage kick formation at the snap, any Team B player within one yard of the line of scrimmage must be aligned completely outside the frame of the body of the snapper at the snap (A.R.
6-3-14-I and II). (note:  these ARs are irrelevant to my question/comment)

4th and 10, Team A is lined up in a regular scrimmage formation.  A29, the punter, is lined up as an outside receiver.  B50 is are aligned as a 0 technique on the snapper.  With 10 seconds left on play clock, Team A shifts into a legal scrimmage kick formation, with A29 lined up 10 yards deep, and the U moves B50 to a position outside the frame of the snapper.  A snaps the ball with 3 seconds left on the playclock.

My question is, is this fair to Team B, who (let's assume) have personnel on the field in response to Team A's normal scrimmage formation, to not be afforded time to substitute, when their defensive formation was involuntarily changed at the last second?  I understand why the change was made, I'm just not seeing the balance here as B gets essentially locked in to a formation/personnel and doesn't have time to change. And I understand, the intent is to do exactly that.  In this situation, I think I'd like to see Team B have the option to retain their original formation, or given time to replace personnel, if A changes from a normal scrimmage formation to a scrimmage kick formation.

Is there an aspect of this I am missing?  Much ado about nothing?

Offline TxBJ

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2022, 10:40:14 PM »
A did not substitute, so why would B be allowed to?  They saw the personnel, should know who the punter is, and be prepared for a regular play or a punt.

Offline Kalle

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2022, 02:12:28 AM »
The only problem I have here is the fact that team A can try to get B50 to either have to move right at the snap, not attempt to rush to block the kick, or foul. In this play situation B50 has time to react to the umpire asking him to shift, but take this slightly modified play.

4th and 10, Team A is lined up in a legal formation with A12, who is known to play both QB and punter, obviously only nine yards behind the neutral zone.  B50 is are aligned as a 0 technique on the snapper.  With 10 seconds left on play clock, A12 steps back so that he is obviously 10 yards deep, and snapper A51 snaps the ball before B50 has time to react.

But, this is a problem the rules makers need to address if they want to - as the rules are team A is allowed to (slightly) confuse (some) team B linemen with shifts.

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2022, 09:03:07 AM »
This is no different than if Team A made no substitutions on 4th down, took a ‘normal’ scrimmage down formation, then shifted into a scrimmage kick formation. Team B never has a legal expectation for Team A to maintain any formation, and Team B has no greater privilege to make substitutions than on any other down when Team A makes no substitutions. Yes, if Team A shifts to a SKF - which also means that the situation is such that it is obvious that a kick will be attempted - Team B is obligated to not place any of their players who are within 1 yard of the NZ to also be within the frame of the snapper’s body, regardless of any Team A substitutions that are - or are NOT - being made.
While Team B may prefer to have different personnel in the game for an apparent punt, if Team A does not substitute, Team B has no greater expectation to be able to make substitutions than on any down in which Team A makes no substitutions. They simply need to have personnel in the game that can adjust and play to whatever personnel Team A has in the game, and to whatever formation Team A may assume, at that moment.

Offline Cowtown Ref

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2022, 01:13:58 PM »
Kalle, your situation is a tricky one and one Ive got burned by.

As a U, im gonna make sure I never have to throw that flag by keeping the nose guard out of there on SK. 

However, we had a team that likes to do the last minute declaration.  The kicker/qb roams around in back field calling signals.  He may drop back 10 yards last minute or he may call for the snap in shotgun and run a play.  So I got burned at the beginning of the game cause I thought he was back in SK formation and I made the nose guard clear out.  Then he ended up running right up the middle. Ugh!!!

So, moving forward Im never gonna flag team B for being in the middle in this situation.  Team A wants to dance around and do last minute changes, thats fine.  But theyre not gonna get that protection/penalty


Offline dammitbobby

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2022, 04:15:00 PM »
Kalle, your situation is a tricky one and one Ive got burned by.

As a U, im gonna make sure I never have to throw that flag by keeping the nose guard out of there on SK. 

However, we had a team that likes to do the last minute declaration.  The kicker/qb roams around in back field calling signals.  He may drop back 10 yards last minute or he may call for the snap in shotgun and run a play.  So I got burned at the beginning of the game cause I thought he was back in SK formation and I made the nose guard clear out.  Then he ended up running right up the middle. Ugh!!!

So, moving forward Im never gonna flag team B for being in the middle in this situation.  Team A wants to dance around and do last minute changes, thats fine.  But theyre not gonna get that protection/penalty

I'm on board with this - the problem is though, that it's not supported by rule or philosophy (that I know of).  I'd like to see it where if A adjusts to a different type of formation, such as from regular scrimmage to kick formation, that B would come in and hold the ball until B interior linemen get moved off the center, and if it causes A to run out the play clock, that's on them.



Offline Birddog

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2022, 04:50:57 PM »
Kalle, your situation is a tricky one and one Ive got burned by.

As a U, im gonna make sure I never have to throw that flag by keeping the nose guard out of there on SK. 

However, we had a team that likes to do the last minute declaration.  The kicker/qb roams around in back field calling signals.  He may drop back 10 yards last minute or he may call for the snap in shotgun and run a play.  So I got burned at the beginning of the game cause I thought he was back in SK formation and I made the nose guard clear out.  Then he ended up running right up the middle. Ugh!!!

So, moving forward Im never gonna flag team B for being in the middle in this situation.  Team A wants to dance around and do last minute changes, thats fine.  But theyre not gonna get that protection/penalty

To be a SK Formation it has to be "obvious" a kick will be made.  As you describe it above it may not be obvious and there is your reason for not protecting the snapper.

Offline Cowtown Ref

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2022, 09:34:57 AM »
Birddog, thats my thought on this as well.  Its not clear an obvious, and shifting last minute, is not clear and obvious

Offline dammitbobby

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2022, 09:40:38 AM »
So same situation as Kalle's, but the QB drops back to punt with :08 left on PC, and they take it all the way down to :01 on PC before snapping.  At what point does it become obvious that it's a SK formation?

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2022, 10:54:08 AM »
So same situation as Kalle's, but the QB drops back to punt with :08 left on PC, and they take it all the way down to :01 on PC before snapping.  At what point does it become obvious that it's a SK formation?

That is your judgment, but, historically, the Rules Committee has made it clear that abusing a rule to gain some form of advantage is not to be allowed. So, if, by their actions, it isn't obvious that a kick will be made, then they are not in a SKF, and they must abide by the mandatory player numbering rules, Team B may have a player 'head up' on the snapper, and the snapper is not protected from immediate contact.
If you want those things to work for you, coach, don't abuse the rules that allow/restrict those things mentioned.

Offline jra104

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2022, 09:48:01 PM »
Ok, so had a situation last week on a FG where the U allowed a DL to line up over the center but at the snap did not move.  The staff assumed that it didn't matter if they rushed or not they were simply not allowed that alignment. 

Offline TxBJ

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2022, 09:55:40 PM »
This should be a very rare foul.  The U should have moved the player out.  Now, if he tried but the player didn't move, I understand. But we should be able to prevent the vast majority of these.

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2022, 06:59:24 AM »
Ok, so had a situation last week on a FG where the U allowed a DL to line up over the center but at the snap did not move.  The staff assumed that it didn't matter if they rushed or not they were simply not allowed that alignment.

Very confusing comment. Who are the ‘staff’? Do you mean the officiating crew? Or a coaching staff?
You say the U  ‘allowed’ the defender to take a position over the snapper? Really? Or, did he warn the defender to move off, but he refused? Or he moved to such position before the U could attempt to get him to move before the ball was snapped? The crew has no rule obligation to prevent a player from taking such a position, but, crews (Umpires, in particular) are directed to attempt to get the player to move off the snapper, IF THEY CAN. But, they can’t physically prevent players from taking such a position. Regardless if a player in such a position (on a bona fide scrimmage kick formation) holds still or moves (in any direction) after the snap, this is a foul. You don’t say if they called the foul, or not.
Please be more specific and thorough with your comment.

Offline jra104

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2022, 03:29:57 PM »
Here's the clip. Wait for the tight and ez angle.  Just trying to add to our knowledge as a staff. 
https://youtu.be/fDX-dLOqpJk


Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2022, 04:07:23 PM »
Here's the clip. Wait for the tight and ez angle.  Just trying to add to our knowledge as a staff. 
https://youtu.be/fDX-dLOqpJk

The end zone view never lies. It reveals four things:
1) The initial formation is clearly legal.
2) Team B players within a yard of the NZ make an abrupt defensive movement intended to cause a false start, which the officials fail to call.
3) After they abruptly move, a team B player within a yard of the NZ has moved into a position that is 'suspicious' for being within the frame of the snapper's body (which does not include the snapper's arms or legs). This is not a safety foul, so we would want this to be 'big,' i.e., obvious that he is with the frame of the snapper's body, to be a foul. Not being obvious, this is a good 'no call.'
4) The U can be seen verbally 'encouraging' the suspicious player to not be over the snapper, and then, after the down, you can see the U seek out the suspicious player to 'educate' him on being sure he is not over the snapper when Team A is in a scrimmage kick formation.

You should be far more concerned about the abrupt defensive movement to cause a false start than the player head-up on the snapper.

Offline JBall

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Re: Defensive Linemen on Scrimmage Kicks
« Reply #15 on: November 06, 2022, 05:25:33 PM »
I like birddogs answer.  I called this 3 times this year but every time it's the linebacker roaming around and at the last second that's the open spot so they rush to fill. 

If a team is not in an obvious scrimmage kick around 10 seconds left on the play clock and move into a kick formation I am not moving the nose and not throwing a flag.  I will let the center know  and communicate with my wings to let coach know by doing that the center is not getting his protection. 

First time I threw this penalty this year coach took the points off the board went for 2 for the lead.