Author Topic: Swinging gate and the new formation rule  (Read 4202 times)

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Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #50 on: July 16, 2019, 04:29:15 PM »
  It's the try, the exception is in effect, they don't need the 5 #50-79. Maybe this is where your group discussion might be going off track.

Except the rule change does not effect or reference in any way the wording for the numbering exception and there is no exception in the 2019 rule change that says that it does not apply during a numbering exception play.  It's very clear (to me at least) that if we have a numbering exception situation play we must still have the 5 restricted players (by position to meet the numbering exception requirements) and therefore in the case play with all eligible numbers we have to have 7 on the LOS.  If the rules makers wanted the "only 5 on the line" requirement to also apply to the numbering exception then IMHO the text needs to change to actually say that.
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Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #51 on: July 16, 2019, 09:16:43 PM »
  It's the try, the exception is in effect, they don't need the 5 #50-79. Maybe this is where your group discussion might be going off track.

I agree with you. His argument is the rule is an exception to the rule that states there must be 5 linemen numbered 50-79 and the exceptions must be inside the ends. They are using this to say there must be 5 interior linemen. I see WHY they think that, but I think they are being too literal with the rule and ignoring the intent of the rule. The new rule change allows them to snap the ball with less than 7 linemen and any interior lineman not numbered 50-79 are the exceptions.

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #52 on: July 18, 2019, 06:49:08 AM »
I think he (we) are simply trying to point out a technical aspect of the new rule that needs to be addressed. If the intent of the rule makers was to ignore the 5 interior lineman requirement when the numbering exception is in place it should be inserted in the rule.


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Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #53 on: July 18, 2019, 08:17:22 AM »
I agree with you. His argument is the rule is an exception to the rule that states there must be 5 linemen numbered 50-79 and the exceptions must be inside the ends. They are using this to say there must be 5 interior linemen. I see WHY they think that, but I think they are being too literal with the rule and ignoring the intent of the rule. The new rule change allows them to snap the ball with less than 7 linemen and any interior lineman not numbered 50-79 are the exceptions.

So in the 4th quarter with the score 24-19 with Team A trailing on a 4th down "punt" play (scrimmage kick formation) the Team A's punt team "accidently mis-substitutes" resulting in only 10 players on the field and we have a line that looks something like this:

Corrected alignment

80      81 82 83 84 85             86     (total 7 on the line - 2 wideouts)

Just prior to the snap 86 takes a full step back and resets and an uncovered #85 goes downfield and catches a TD pass.  What would you have?
« Last Edit: July 18, 2019, 09:36:12 AM by NVFOA_Ump »
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Offline toma

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #54 on: July 18, 2019, 09:09:00 AM »
Illegal the exception is for a kick or try.
 ^flag

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #55 on: July 18, 2019, 09:14:57 AM »
Illegal the exception is for a kick or try.
 ^flag

By "punt play" he meant to imply a scrimmage kick formation. The exception is applicable in this situation.

Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #56 on: July 18, 2019, 09:25:23 AM »
So in the 4th quarter with the score 24-19 with Team A trailing on a 4th down "punt" play the Team A's punt team "accidently mis-substitutes" resulting in only 10 players on the field and we have a line that looks something like this:

81        82 83 84 85             86     (total 7 on the line - 2 wideouts)

Just prior to the snap 86 takes a full step back and resets and an uncovered #85 goes downfield and catches a TD pass.  What would you have?

You indicate there are 7 on the line but your diagram only lists 6. I'm assuming you are just missing one of the numbers for discussion purposes. When 86 shifts into the backfield he becomes the 4th back so they are still in a legal formation there. 85 becomes eligible and and can go out for a pass (assuming the missing player from your diagram isn't on the line outside 86's original position). This is no different than if they have 11 players on the field and start with 8 on the line with 86 on the end and 85 inside of him. 86 can do the exact same shift and it's perfectly legal with 11 players. Having only 10 players shouldn't make it illegal especially since A/K is playing with a disadvantage to start.

I will add in NCAA rules this is a foul because an originally ineligible numbering exception can't become eligible by position following shifts once the snapper has locked in the line by placing his hands on the ball or below his knees. It's a weird, quirky rule that's hard to catch but it does occasionally happen when teams try weird shifts.

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #57 on: July 18, 2019, 09:29:21 AM »
You indicate there are 7 on the line but your diagram only lists 6. I'm assuming you are just missing one of the numbers for discussion purposes. When 86 shifts into the backfield he becomes the 4th back so they are still in a legal formation there. 85 becomes eligible and and can go out for a pass (assuming the missing player from your diagram isn't on the line outside 86's original position). This is no different than if they have 11 players on the field and start with 8 on the line with 86 on the end and 85 inside of him. 86 can do the exact same shift and it's perfectly legal with 11 players. Having only 10 players shouldn't make it illegal especially since A/K is playing with a disadvantage to start.

I will add in NCAA rules this is a foul because an originally ineligible numbering exception can't become eligible by position following shifts once the snapper has locked in the line by placing his hands on the ball or below his knees. It's a weird, quirky rule that's hard to catch but it does occasionally happen when teams try weird shifts.

Foul. Here's the exception:
2. On fourth down or during a kick try, when A sets or shifts into a scrimmage-kick formation, any A player numbered 1 to 49 or 80 to 99 may take the position of any A player numbered 50 to 79. A player in the game under this exception must assume an initial position on his line of scrimmage between the ends and he remains an ineligible forward-pass receiver during that down unless the pass is touched by B (7-5-6b).

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #58 on: July 18, 2019, 09:48:13 AM »
IMO, this situation doesn't address the concern. The concern is not whether the 4 players in the game under the numbering exception are ineligible or not. That rule has not changed. If a player is in the game under that exception, he must line up "between the ends." The question is does there have to be 5 in the game under the numbering exception if nobody is in the game wearing a 50-79 number. If that answer is no, then fine. If it's yes, then this formation is illegal from the start, because with 6 on the line there is no way 5 of them can line up "between the ends." That's the rub. If the answer is, "A has already placed themselves at a disadvantage by playing with 10," then fine. The rule or the exception needs to say that. Otherwise we will have officials making up rules and exceptions as we go along. That should be avoided at all costs. I'm all for a "less-than-five between the ends is ok" interpretation because I agree that A has put themselves at a disadvantage. The problem is that the philosophy for every other scrimmage formation seems to be that A is required to have 5 ineligible linemen on every play. Why else would they have the 5 player with 50-79 number requirement? In a regular scrimmage formation (pass or run), if A puts themselves at a disadvantage by having less than 7 on the line, they STILL must have 5 players on the line numbered 50-79. If we are going to disregard that requirement in a scrimmage kick formation, we should do away with it on the other types of formations as well.
There - I feel better now..  pHiNzuP

Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #59 on: July 18, 2019, 09:56:01 AM »
Or this version:  In the 4th quarter with the score 24-19 with Team A trailing on a 4th down "punt" play (scrimmage kick formation) Team A's punt team substitutes in 10 players (86 is already in the game) into their huddle.  As the huddle breaks the line begins to form something like this:

80      81 82 83 84 85          86     (total 7 on the line - 2 wideouts)

But 86 never sets as he is headed wide toward the LOS and just before the snap continues off the field into his bench area leaving 10 players in scrimmage kick formation.  Uncovered #85 goes downfield and catches a TD pass.  What would you have?
« Last Edit: July 18, 2019, 09:58:41 AM by NVFOA_Ump »
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Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #60 on: July 18, 2019, 09:58:47 AM »
IMO, this situation doesn't address the concern. The concern is not whether the 4 players in the game under the numbering exception are ineligible or not. That rule has not changed. If a player is in the game under that exception, he must line up "between the ends." The question is does there have to be 5 in the game under the numbering exception if nobody is in the game wearing a 50-79 number. If that answer is no, then fine. If it's yes, then this formation is illegal from the start, because with 6 on the line there is no way 5 of them can line up "between the ends." That's the rub. If the answer is, "A has already placed themselves at a disadvantage by playing with 10," then fine. The rule or the exception needs to say that. Otherwise we will have officials making up rules and exceptions as we go along. That should be avoided at all costs. I'm all for a "less-than-five between the ends is ok" interpretation because I agree that A has put themselves at a disadvantage. The problem is that the philosophy for every other scrimmage formation seems to be that A is required to have 5 ineligible linemen on every play. Why else would they have the 5 player with 50-79 number requirement? In a regular scrimmage formation (pass or run), if A puts themselves at a disadvantage by having less than 7 on the line, they STILL must have 5 players on the line numbered 50-79. If we are going to disregard that requirement in a scrimmage kick formation, we should do away with it on the other types of formations as well.
There - I feel better now..  pHiNzuP

Great analysis. Thanks for sharing.

The reason for the 5 ineligible numbers is to make it easier for the defense (and us by association) to determine who the normal ineligible players are on every play. With 11 players there are 6 eligible positions thus leaving 5 ineligible positions. By putting big numbers on them it makes is easier to recognize. They are welcome to have more than 5 and they are also welcome to line up an ineligible number outside an eligible number but that would not be a good strategy albeit legal.

You are correct that missing one of the ineligible numbers in a regular scrimmage formation would violate the numbering rule and could be justly flagged. The intent of the rule assumes 11 players on the field though so I'm perfectly fine applying the philosophy of not flagging that because it's not creating any additional eligible players for A and it's not confusing the defense as to who could be eligible like the A-11 offense did.

Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #61 on: July 18, 2019, 10:09:47 AM »
Or this version:  In the 4th quarter with the score 24-19 with Team A trailing on a 4th down "punt" play (scrimmage kick formation) Team A's punt team substitutes in 10 players (86 is already in the game) into their huddle.  As the huddle breaks the line begins to form something like this:

80      81 82 83 84 85          86     (total 7 on the line - 2 wideouts)

But 86 never sets as he is headed wide toward the LOS and just before the snap continues off the field into his bench area leaving 10 players in scrimmage kick formation.  Uncovered #85 goes downfield and catches a TD pass.  What would you have?

If 86 never came set then 85 was established as the end throughout the dead ball period. He's eligible. Those arguing this should be a foul because there aren't 5 numbering exceptions (81-84 are the exceptions on this play) you would have a flag for illegal numbering.

Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #62 on: July 18, 2019, 10:13:54 AM »
The intent of the rule assumes 11 players on the field though so I'm perfectly fine applying the philosophy of not flagging that because it's not creating any additional eligible players for A and it's not confusing the defense as to who could be eligible like the "The offense that shall not be named" offense did.

Except during a scrimmage kick exception scenario there is the possibility for the offense to manipulate the alignment with a lot of various scenarios where a clear advantage is gained.  The scrimmage kick exception originated to allow without any confusion or "reporting" a "skilled player" to come in and snap the ball.  The wording in the scrimmage kick exception meshed perfectly with the wording that required 7 on the line with 5 ineligible numbers.  The fine meshing has been converted into a fine mess.  I am,  as is probably very obvious, and proponent of rigorous review of ALL of the impacted rules when you make a seemingly simple rule change.  We should not have to be discussing on a message board, in our board meetings, or during our annual coaches presentation how the existing rules fit together with the rules changes.  That should be done by the people making the rules.  Step 1 of reviewing any rule change should be how many places in the remaining rules does this specific change potentially impact and are any additional changes needed to avoid these types of discussions.
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Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #63 on: July 18, 2019, 10:15:21 AM »
If 86 never came set then 85 was established as the end throughout the dead ball period. He's eligible. Those arguing this should be a foul because there aren't 5 numbering exceptions (81-84 are the exceptions on this play) you would have a flag for illegal numbering.

Or a possible foul for using the substitution process to deceive?
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Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #64 on: July 18, 2019, 10:27:57 AM »
Except during a scrimmage kick exception scenario there is the possibility for the offense to manipulate the alignment with a lot of various scenarios where a clear advantage is gained.  The scrimmage kick exception originated to allow without any confusion or "reporting" a "skilled player" to come in and snap the ball.  The wording in the scrimmage kick exception meshed perfectly with the wording that required 7 on the line with 5 ineligible numbers.  The fine meshing has been converted into a fine mess.  I am,  as is probably very obvious, and proponent of rigorous review of ALL of the impacted rules when you make a seemingly simple rule change.  We should not have to be discussing on a message board, in our board meetings, or during our annual coaches presentation how the existing rules fit together with the rules changes.  That should be done by the people making the rules.  Step 1 of reviewing any rule change should be how many places in the remaining rules does this specific change potentially impact and are any additional changes needed to avoid these types of discussions.
I agree it's a good goal to try to achieve that no matter who or how we write the rules there will always be discussion and debate on message boards and association meetings on intent and philosophy and interpretation. They exist at the NFL and NCAA level as well. I agree the NFHS rules probably struggle more in this area, but some of that is due to the make-up and structure of the committee. There are 50-ish people trying to do this from various areas of football and different perspectives. I know a few members of the committee and their intent is never to make this more confusing and they do everything they can to address every rule possible. But there will always be something missed.

Or a possible foul for using the substitution process to deceive?
Possibly but it would have to be pretty obvious that's WHY they were doing this (i.e. to pull a defender all the way out to the sideline assuming he was just going to set up wide). I would need some verbal communication from a player or coach telling him to get set up wide and then pulling him off the field at the last second to go that far.

Great advice I got once was "don't go looking for fouls, let them find you."

Offline NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #65 on: July 18, 2019, 10:38:35 AM »
I think one key thing that is being overlooked here is in part because of the concept that Team A playing short is to their disadvantage.  Under previous rules that was without question the case since the "missing" players had to be "skill" players due to the alignment rules.  You always knew who the ineligibles were without any 2nd thoughts. This change, depending on which side of the fence you are on here, changes that.

The concept that led to this rule change, the idea that we should not be penalizing Team A for an alignment which is arguably to their "disadvantage" is a noble one, but it has introduced a new problem that we should not have to sort out.
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Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #66 on: July 18, 2019, 10:48:25 AM »
Or a possible foul for using the substitution process to deceive?
I would have a foul for illegal shift because A86 never came set.

Offline Ralph Damren

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #67 on: July 18, 2019, 11:26:44 AM »
Under Penalty Summary (p.92) Both fouls are listed on the same line (#10). It is said that 50%+ of IF fouls occur on scrimmage kick formation (playing shorthanded). Assuming it's 4th down or a PAT, we don't need to worry about numbers......

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Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #68 on: July 18, 2019, 11:44:38 AM »
I would have a foul for illegal shift because A86 never came set.

Definitely if he's still on the field at the snap. But if he gets off he's a replaced player and the illegal shift needs to happen by a player.

Offline blandis

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #69 on: July 26, 2019, 09:50:30 PM »
Two things:
1) Yes, to legally use the numbering except, a snapper, wearing an eligible number, has to be covered up and remains ineligible during the down, but, only on a down less than 4. (7-2-5b EXCEPTION 1)
2) On 4th Down or during a Try, the snapper may wear an eligible AND may be in an eligible position.
3) Team A/K can shift all they want, as, all of the fouls listed in 7-2-5 may only occur: At the snap...

Watching a lot of (this means too much) video, I have noticed a common situation that gets missed:
During a Try they line up in a swinging gate formation, pause, and then shift back into a regular (non-kicking) formation!
They snap the football (going for 2) with only 4 lineman numbered 50-79. This is Illegal Numbering for a violation of 7-2-5a

Now when they were in the Swinging Gate formation, just as long as they ALSO meet either of the formation requirements described in 2-14-2a or 2-14-2b,
they could legally run a play as per 7-2-5b EXCEPTION 2.

Remember, while some will argue this is a whole HECK of a lot of wording, (and I agree) since there is no foul until the snap the football (exception DOG)... so
when the shift back into a regular scrimmage play with on FOUR 50-79 lineman, your radar should go up and that one foul should not get missed.
 
--KWH: ON ANY DOWN Under no circumstance can the numbering exception be used if the snapper is not covered up and made ineligible by position. In other words, on any down, if the numbering exception is used, the snapper is never eligible to catch a forward pass and must be covered up. On downs 1, 2, & 3 the snapper is the only player who may use an eligible number and he must be covered up. On 4th down any lineman may use an eligible number provided the snapper is covered up. And in all circumstances, if the numbering exception is used the holder and/or kicker must be in their respective positions at the snap.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2019, 09:52:50 PM by blandis »

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #70 on: July 26, 2019, 09:57:39 PM »
--KWH: ON ANY DOWN Under no circumstance can the numbering exception be used if the snapper is not covered up and made ineligible by position. In other words, on any down, if the numbering exception is used, the snapper is never eligible to catch a forward pass and must be covered up. On downs 1, 2, & 3 the snapper is the only player who may use an eligible number and he must be covered up. On 4th down any lineman may use an eligible number provided the snapper is covered up. And in all circumstances, if the numbering exception is used the holder and/or kicker must be in their respective positions at the snap.
Can u provide a rule reference for your snapper comment on fourth down? I agree on 3rd down the only numbering exception is for the snapper but can’t remember reading anything about the 4th down exception includin* the snapper having to be covered.


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Offline blandis

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #71 on: July 27, 2019, 03:22:18 PM »
I stand corrected. Thanks for helping to clarify my confusion on 4th down number exceptions.

Offline Magician

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #72 on: July 28, 2019, 10:33:20 AM »
I stand corrected. Thanks for helping to clarify my confusion on 4th down number exceptions.

This is a common confusion created with the rule change. On 1st, 2nd or 3rd down the snapper can also be eligible but the team would need to have 5 other linemen numbered 50-79. The snapper covered only applies if you have only 4 ineligible numbers. 4th down and tries allows numbering exceptions and eligibility like they always did before the A11 rule change.

Offline blandis

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Re: Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #73 on: July 31, 2019, 07:23:02 PM »
   I apologize for any confusion, I got confused myself. With the numbering exception on 4th Down and a Try the snapper can be anywhere provided that they are in a legal scrimmage kick formation if they use the numbering exception. What I have noticed that teams try is they get set on a Try in a swinging gate with 4-players numbered 50-79 and in shotgun formation. The numbering exception can only be used if Team K is in a scrimmage kick formation when the snapper places their hand on the ball. The references for this are Rule 2-14-2a,b; 7-2-5b Exception 2. The Redding Study Guide offers an example on page 10 (2019):
    "For the fourth down/try exemption a player must assume an initial position on his line between the ends. Once such a player assumes that initial position as an interior lineman, he is an ineligible receiver. If a subsequent shift leaves the exempted player in the position of an eligible receiver, he remains ineligible. The exempted players are determined when the snapper touches the ball (7-2-5b Exc 2 and 7.2.5D)"
      In order for a team to run a play from a Swinging Gate formation while NOT in a scrimmage kick formation they must have 5-linemen numbered 50-79. If they use only 4-players 50-79 because they have their long snapper snapping in a shotgun formation to a Quarterback then it is an Illegal Formation foul at the snap. To get the numbering exemption you must be in a legal scrimmage kick formation and you can't shift out of it.
      If they ARE in a scrimmage kick formation on 4th down or a Try the snapper can be on the end. 

Offline CalhounLJ

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Swinging gate and the new formation rule
« Reply #74 on: July 31, 2019, 11:42:55 PM »
I think you are still confused about some aspects of this exception. Particularly the part about shifting into and out of a scrimmage kick formation. While I do agree that A can’t run a play out of a shotgun snap without a flag, they can start out in one and then shift into a scrimmage kick formation and get the exception. Both exceptions begin with “when A sets or shifts into a scrimmage kick formation.”  Also, in our area at least, when a team runs a swinging gate, they run it with a holder and kicker in position.
I also agree that pass eligibility restrictions are determined when A takes his initial position on the line.


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« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 06:36:41 AM by CalhounLJ »