Author Topic: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick  (Read 2774 times)

Offline UMP27

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4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« on: September 17, 2014, 12:54:16 PM »
I'm a new official working a middle school game last night. I am working line judge position in 4 man mechanics. During a punt I hear yelling from my sideline that there is a hold, I glance to see the wideout and the defender going to the ground. I didn't see how the fell (trip, holding, running into each other, etc...) I did not throw the flag as I assumed my responsibility is with the returner. No one threw the flag, which brought good discussion with the crew who has responsibility for the wideout (out of bounds, holding, etc...) on a scrimmage kick under 4 man mechanics? We assumed it is the umpire to do the best he can.

Offline Ralph Damren

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2014, 01:04:14 PM »
Welcome to the forum, UMP27, I hope you find it both enjoyable and informative. The LJ should be focusing on the potential punt return. The U would be responsible for line play. Four officials can't possibly see everything that 22 kids are doing. Throwing a flag responding to a sideline "suggestion" is sorta' like feeding pigions....once you start, they'll just want more.... :)

Offline UMP27

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2014, 01:31:23 PM »
Agreeed. I didnt "know" what happend, so I can't assume

Offline AlUpstateNY

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2014, 02:09:31 PM »
If I may offer a general suggestion, new official;  there are really only two answers to the question, "Didn't you see that" (or any of it's endless variables), and both answers take you (and the questioner) to exactly the same place.  Either you didn't see, whatever the questioner thinks he saw, or you did observe EXACTLY what he saw and reached a different conclusion than the conclusion he made.

Depending on how politely the question was asked, YOU may choose to explain why you arrived at a different conclusion, but that's YOUR option. If the question is from a HEAD Coach, he has the option to request (a charged) Time Out to review a rule interpretation with the Referee, with the understanding that if his conclusion, and the discussion, results in a reversal, he will not be charged with the TO, and the appropriate correction will be made.

Offline greenwell

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2014, 03:20:41 PM »
I'm a new official working a middle school game last night. I am working line judge position in 4 man mechanics. During a punt I hear yelling from my sideline that there is a hold, I glance to see the wideout and the defender going to the ground. I didn't see how the fell (trip, holding, running into each other, etc...) I did not throw the flag as I assumed my responsibility is with the returner. No one threw the flag, which brought good discussion with the crew who has responsibility for the wideout (out of bounds, holding, etc...) on a scrimmage kick under 4 man mechanics? We assumed it is the umpire to do the best he can.

I don't want to hijack this discussion and did not want to start a new discussion, so .....

4 man mechanics on a pass play from A's endzone.
Working as H and A has the ball at A's 3 yard line on hash closet to H.
legal snap and both the slot and the wideout sprint downfield
QB rolls to the side of H with a blocker in front.
H's initial move at the snap was to the goal line.
Does H stay at the goal line or move downfield with the receivers?

Thanks

Offline Rulesman

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2014, 03:46:11 PM »
I don't want to hijack this discussion and did not want to start a new discussion, so .....

4 man mechanics on a pass play from A's endzone.
Working as H and A has the ball at A's 3 yard line on hash closet to H.
legal snap and both the slot and the wideout sprint downfield
QB rolls to the side of H with a blocker in front.
H's initial move at the snap was to the goal line.
Does H stay at the goal line or move downfield with the receivers?

Thanks
You've got to protect the goal line until the ball is gone. Then you've got to run like a madman to be in position downfield. Good luck, and pray:; !
"Gentlemen, we are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect. But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch excellence. I am not remotely interested in just being good."
- Vince Lombardi

Offline greenwell

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2014, 05:12:04 PM »
Thank you. That is what I did and of course as I begin running downfield I hear the common refrain "that's pass interference" . I am thinking "You want DPI, pay for a back judge."

Online prab

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2014, 09:59:26 PM »
I am thinking "You want DPI, pay for a back judge."

Amen!!!

Offline VALJ

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2014, 07:52:25 AM »
Thank you. That is what I did and of course as I begin running downfield I hear the common refrain "that's pass interference" . I am thinking "You want DPI, pay for a back judge."

 yEs:

Offline bbeagle

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2014, 09:00:31 AM »
You've got to protect the goal line until the ball is gone. Then you've got to run like a madman to be in position downfield. Good luck, and pray:; !

In 4 man, as a LJ or LM, if you have receivers going downfield and a QB rolling out, wherever he is - you've got to be in a middle no-mans land. You can't cover the QB or cover the receivers until you're sure whether it's a run or a pass.

If the QB gets tackled near his own goal-line, that's the R or U's call. Remember this is 4 man, not 5 man. There are many things we can't see. It's more of a feel thing. If the receivers are at the 20, and the QB is in the endzone, I'm around the 10, watching both. If we miss something, we miss something. That's the way it is.



Offline Rulesman

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2014, 09:26:41 AM »
If the QB gets tackled near his own goal-line, that's the R or U's call. Remember this is 4 man, not 5 man. There are many things we can't see. It's more of a feel thing. If the receivers are at the 20, and the QB is in the endzone, I'm around the 10, watching both. If we miss something, we miss something. That's the way it is.
The R or the U have no way know knowing forward progress when the goal line is involved. If you miss something, you miss it. The ONE thing you can't afford to miss is whether or not the runner is in or out of the end zone.
"Gentlemen, we are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect. But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch excellence. I am not remotely interested in just being good."
- Vince Lombardi

Offline bbeagle

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2014, 09:42:28 AM »
The R or the U have no way know knowing forward progress when the goal line is involved. If you miss something, you miss it. The ONE thing you can't afford to miss is whether or not the runner is in or out of the end zone.

Do you miss the catch downfield at the 30 that is run 70 yards out-of-bounds at the 1 or endzone? You'll miss that touchdown/out-of-bounds call if you're further away. You won't even see if the ball is caught/trapped at the 30 at all.

The R and U MUST try to see the QB in 4 man mechanics. You can't have 3 officials near the goal line, with 40 yards of players running routes all over the field covered by 1 official.

There is really nothing you can do. You'll have to hedge your bets on calls.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2014, 09:44:22 AM by bbeagle »

Offline Rulesman

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2014, 10:09:33 AM »
And what are you going to tell that coach who didn't get the points off the safety that you failed to call loses the game by 1?
"Gentlemen, we are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect. But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch excellence. I am not remotely interested in just being good."
- Vince Lombardi

Offline ALStripes17

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2014, 10:12:47 AM »
I'll stick to the goalline on this play.  Any game/coach/school using 4-man mechanics around here is most likely not able to throw a pass 30+ yards downfield anyway.

Goalline action is more likely to happen. Need a very hard spot from the wing officials.  If the play goes 90+ yards and is close to being a TD or not, I'm pretty sure the HC is just going to be happy they are not in their own endzone anymore.
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Offline bbeagle

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2014, 10:14:30 AM »
And what are you going to tell that coach who didn't get the points off the safety that you failed to call loses the game by 1?

The referee and umpire were in position to make the call and determined that he made it out of the endzone.

Offline bbeagle

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2014, 10:16:35 AM »
Any game/coach/school using 4-man mechanics around here is most likely not able to throw a pass 30+ yards downfield anyway.


ALL our varsity games in our area are done with 4 man mechanics because of school budget issues. Many times, the coaches feel sorry for our crew of 4 when there are no-huddle passing teams playing each other. These are all really good teams that win our state championships and have incredible QBs with arms.

(Some of our varsity games are even done with 3!)

Offline Welpe

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Re: Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2014, 10:30:00 AM »
The R or the U have no way know knowing forward progress when the goal line is involved. If you miss something, you miss it. The ONE thing you can't afford to miss is whether or not the runner is in or out of the end zone.

I agree with this. The goal line is the most important line on the field... The money line. This should be the wings' priority.

Offline Rulesman

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2014, 11:33:14 AM »
The referee and umpire were in position to make the call and determined that he made it out of the endzone.
Good luck selling that!
"Gentlemen, we are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect. But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch excellence. I am not remotely interested in just being good."
- Vince Lombardi

Offline Legacy Zebra

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #18 on: September 18, 2014, 12:24:00 PM »
So if the ball is snapped at the three, that means the U is about the A11 at the snap and you want him to make a call at the goal line? No. Not a chance.  Maybe, MAYBE, R can get to the goal line, but no way do I want the U coming across the line of scrimmage to gets look down the line. The wing needs to stay at the pylon (or goal line extended if the run nears the sideline).

Offline AlUpstateNY

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2014, 01:14:33 PM »
The referee and umpire were in position to make the call and determined that he made it out of the endzone.

The same thing you explain in other difficult (if not impossible) situations;  "In my judgment (whatever you judged happened)"  There is no requirement coaches (or anyone else) agrees with your judgment, but they MUST accept it. 

There are any number of reasons 4 man coverage was expanded to 5 man, then subsequently expanded to 6 man and subsequently expanded to 7 man configurations, however during a game is NOT the appropriate time to itemize, or discuss, them.

Offline bama_stripes

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2014, 01:41:38 PM »
In 4 man, as a LJ or LM, if you have receivers going downfield and a QB rolling out, wherever he is - you've got to be in a middle no-mans land. You can't cover the QB or cover the receivers until you're sure whether it's a run or a pass.

If the QB gets tackled near his own goal-line, that's the R or U's call. Remember this is 4 man, not 5 man. There are many things we can't see. It's more of a feel thing. If the receivers are at the 20, and the QB is in the endzone, I'm around the 10, watching both. If we miss something, we miss something. That's the way it is.

 :thumbup

Offline HLinNC

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Re: 4 man mechanics on scrimmage kick
« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2014, 07:16:04 PM »
According to the 2014 Fed mechanics manual, in a 4 man crew, both HL & LJ are to move "cautiously the first 5-7 yds downfield"  to be halfway between deepest receiver and the NZ.  They must also "be ready to adjust coverage if the potential passer decides to run".  It also states to "always be prepared to come back to rule on a play near the neutral zone in addition to sideline action."

For Goal Line Plays, a ball snapped inside the five yard line, both wings are to "release to the goal line and officiate back to the ball".  Granted, there are no Reverse Goal Line Play instructions in the manual but best practices would lead us to know that the wings have the goal line.

Our local association mechanics dictate that a ball snapped from the A3 yl back to the goal line, the wings move back to the goal line then officiate back upfield.