Author Topic: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play  (Read 339 times)

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Offline NorCalMike

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Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« on: September 13, 2019, 11:55:15 AM »
How would you handle this.

I am going to use A and B to explain this play as the offense doesn't initially line up in a scrimmage kick formation.

I was working the U.

4/10 on A20. QB A12 sets up 7 yards behind LOS. Ball is snapped. A12 takes the ball and does are rugby style punt. Noseguard B57 blows up the snapper as soon as the ball is snapped. Snapper A86 complains that he was hit before he recovered. I explained that since A did not meet scrimmage kick formation requirements, there was no protection for the snapper.

Next series for same team on fourth down, A lines up in the same formation (A12 is 7 yards deep again). Just prior to the ball being snapped, A12 takes 3 steps back (he is now 10 yds deep). The ball is immediately snapped. B57 blows through the snapper again. Snapper complains to me again. Do you think this is a foul for roughing the snapper?

I didn't flag it. My reasoning was that the noseguard likely didn't see the QB shift into scrimmage kick formation and I didn't have time to remind the defense that the snapper now had protection. I told the snapper that if I don't have enough time to announce that the snapper has protection, the defense doesn't know about the protection.

On there 3rd punt of the game, they gave me enough time to announce the snapper is protected and the noseguard switched his location to the A gap and avoided the snapper.

Offline HLinNC

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2019, 12:08:01 PM »
I told the snapper that if I don't have enough time to announce that the snapper has protection, the defense doesn't know about the protection.


Do you feel that your responsibility is more to giving info to the defensive player who may or may not know, or the snapper who is deserving of the protection by rule?

Offline CalhounLJ

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2019, 01:51:25 PM »
Iím with NC. Flag it if the formation meets the requirement.


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Online NVFOA_Ump

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2019, 02:40:08 PM »
Iím with NC. Flag it if the formation meets the requirement.
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I'd agree.  On a 4th down play I'm always watching to see if A sets up in a scrimmage kick formation.  There's no mandate to announce to B that they're in SKF but I do it if there is enough time to do so.  Not making the announcement does not in any way absolve B from an illegal hit on the snapper.
It's easy to get the players, getting 'em to play together, that's the hard part. - Casey Stengel

Offline js in sc

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2019, 10:07:27 PM »
I'd agree.  On a 4th down play I'm always watching to see if A sets up in a scrimmage kick formation.  There's no mandate to announce to B that they're in SKF but I do it if there is enough time to do so.  Not making the announcement does not in any way absolve B from an illegal hit on the snapper.
I agree.  Although announcing "do not foul the snapper" is good preventative officiating, failing to warn the defense does not absolve the defense from guilt if they do foul the snapper in this situation.  Just because the white hat does not announce that the pass is gone, does not give the defense a free hit on the QB.

Offline Ralph Damren

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2019, 10:15:29 AM »
Remember ,too, if the formation doesn't qualify for scrimmage kick there can be no numbering exception.

Offline AlUpstateNY

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2019, 10:32:14 AM »
I agree.  Although announcing "do not foul the snapper" is good preventative officiating, failing to warn the defense does not absolve the defense from guilt if they do foul the snapper in this situation.  Just because the white hat does not announce that the pass is gone, does not give the defense a free hit on the QB.

Announcing, and calling attention to the prohibition against roughing the snapper, is without question a viable and practical "Preventive Officiating" staple.  The rule regarding this particular threat, is both direct, and simple.  NFHS 9-4-6: "Roughing the snapper.  A defensive player SHALL NOT CHARGE DIRECTLY INTO THE SNAPPER, when the offensive team is in a scrimmage kick formation.

NFHS 2-14-2, very specifically defines the requirements of establishing a "Scrimmage kick formation".  A really thorough understanding of both rules is important and necessary for proper enforcement of this and ANY rule specifically designed for player protection, which are NOT appropriate targets for splitting hairs.

Offline Ralph Damren

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2019, 12:13:16 PM »
Remember, too, that field goal formation requires a player 7 yards back on a knee with a kicker in place to kick. I've had a couple of coaches state : "Our holder will be in a 'catcher's crouch' and quickly throw a pass to a teammate...." . I've interrupted and responded : "If you do that, your snapper looses his PROTECTION, and you will need 5 linemen between 50-79, as this wouldn't qualify as a scrimmage kick formation."  This usually ends that idea.

Offline bossman72

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2019, 08:37:53 AM »
How would you handle this.

I am going to use A and B to explain this play as the offense doesn't initially line up in a scrimmage kick formation.

I was working the U.

4/10 on A20. QB A12 sets up 7 yards behind LOS. Ball is snapped. A12 takes the ball and does are rugby style punt. Noseguard B57 blows up the snapper as soon as the ball is snapped. Snapper A86 complains that he was hit before he recovered. I explained that since A did not meet scrimmage kick formation requirements, there was no protection for the snapper.

Next series for same team on fourth down, A lines up in the same formation (A12 is 7 yards deep again). Just prior to the ball being snapped, A12 takes 3 steps back (he is now 10 yds deep). The ball is immediately snapped. B57 blows through the snapper again. Snapper complains to me again. Do you think this is a foul for roughing the snapper?

I didn't flag it. My reasoning was that the noseguard likely didn't see the QB shift into scrimmage kick formation and I didn't have time to remind the defense that the snapper now had protection. I told the snapper that if I don't have enough time to announce that the snapper has protection, the defense doesn't know about the protection.

On there 3rd punt of the game, they gave me enough time to announce the snapper is protected and the noseguard switched his location to the A gap and avoided the snapper.

I liked your philosophy on this one.  Don't give them a cheap foul.

Was the snapper's head down looking through his legs like a normal longsnap, or was it more of a "shotgun" snap with the center looking at the nose guard the whole time?

Offline AlUpstateNY

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2019, 10:24:56 AM »
It only takes a couple of seconds to remind defensive players on EVERY potential "Scrimmage Kick formation", "You can't charge directly into the snapper on SK formations". Whether they listen, or remember, is up to them but a consistent reminder may avoid unnecessary problems.

Offline TampaSteve

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2019, 11:31:50 AM »
I liked your philosophy on this one.  Don't give them a cheap foul.

Was the snapper's head down looking through his legs like a normal longsnap, or was it more of a "shotgun" snap with the center looking at the nose guard the whole time?
Exactly my thinking.
Certainly the rules 'say what they say', but in this day & age Centers can effectively one-handed snap a ball to QB in shotgun without compromising their safety (i.e. head-down, looking through his wide-stanced legs he's vulnerable).......
So, while the rules 'say what they say', if he's not compromized and just as easily can snap it 10yd one-handed, would/should the rules-makers take a look at the definition and maybe update them to today's game?

Offline AlUpstateNY

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Re: Protection for the Snapper on a punt play
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2019, 01:35:38 PM »
No way, speaking as a LONG AGO Center (Before "Roughing the Snapper" was categorized) the presence of a nose guard breathing directly over your head ready to bowl you over (whether he (alone) chooses to risk a foul, or not) can intimidate, and "compromise", the accuracy of a deep snap, whether it's head down focusing on the target, or preparing for a collision, providing the defense with an unearned advantage.

"Roughing the Snapper" was a practical adjustment, and deterrent.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2019, 01:37:12 PM by AlUpstateNY »