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Men's Premier League Rules



CIFFA OFFICIAL FLAG FOOTBALL RULES - MEN'S LEAGUE 9 ON 9 (2017 Revision)

 

  • OVERVIEW:

9 Players per side, less than 6 would result in a Forfeit. You may start with 6 players. All male players at least 18 years of age are eligible to play, 16 years and older may play with written parental/guardian consent. Field size is as follows: 80' x 50' with first downs at the 20-40-20 yard line

All team members and coaches (not on the field of play) must maintain 5 yards off side lines at all times. Players must stay behind the 20-yard markers at all times.

 

  • KICKOFFS:

The toss of coin will take place within two minutes of kickoff in center of field. The toss will be called by the Referee's choice of captain before the coin is flipped. The winner may choose one of three privileges (or defer choice to the second half) and the loser gets the other:

(a) Receive the kickoff

(b) Goal his team will defend

(c) Kick the kickoff

Immediately prior to the start of the second half, the captains of both teams must inform the officials of their respective choices. The loser of the original coin toss gets first choice (unless the winner has deferred).

All kickoffs must be from a tee or held. Kickoffs are from the 20 yard line. If the ball is touched by the kicking team before the receiving team, the ball is dead at the spot and is downed.

Kickoffs will take place at the beginning of each half.

Any kickoff that goes out of bounds prior to contact by the receiving team will be set on the 35 yard line; touchbacks are placed on the 20 yard line.

Any kick or punt fumbled in the air and recovered by the kicking team BEFORE touching the ground is a turnover and live ball. Ball will be spotted where the recovering team member is tackled.

There is NO down field blocking on kickoffs.

During the last two minutes of the game, a scoring team down by less than 8 points may elect an onside kick.

An Onside kick is kicked from the kicking team's 20 yard line. If the kicking team is able to tackle the receiving team behind the receiving team's 20 yard line, the ball goes to the kicking team at their 35 yard line. If the receiving team is able to move the ball outside their 20 yard line, they receive the ball at the spot of the tackle. Touchback on Onside kick results in receiving team taking possession on their own 20 yard line.

 

  • PUNTING:

All punts must be declared prior to punting. It is a free kick. No fake punts are permitted.

The punter must punt the ball from at least 3 yards behind the center.

Defense must have a minimum of 3 players on the line of scrimmage.

On punt, snap must be made as a normal legal snap between the legs (snapper cannot stand up and throw the ball back to the kicker). Ball is live and if dropped is down at the spot.

Ball must be kicked within 5 seconds of the snap. Otherwise, penalty is delay of game.

No one on the punting team may move until the ball has been kicked (PENALTY – ILLEGAL PROCEDURE)

Only 1 bump or chuck is allowed once the ball is kicked and must be within 5 yard of the line of scrimmage.

 

  • FIELD GOALS:

All field goals must be declared prior to kicking. No fake field goals are permitted.

All field goals attempted (kicker) and missed from beyond the 20-yard line will result in the defensive team taking possession of the ball at the spot of the kick. On any field goal attempted and missed where the spot of the kick is on or inside the 20-yard line, ball will revert to defensive team at the 20-yard line.

Rushing the A gap is not allowed (can't rush between the snapper & the 2 guards).

A blocked or missed field goal results in a dead ball.

Snap must be made as a normal legal snap between the legs (snapper cannot stand up and throw the ball back to the kicker). Ball is live and if dropped is down at the spot.

Other NFL rules apply (roughing the kicker etc)

Any contact made with kicker/holder by defensive team will result in Field Goal being ruled as completed and 3 points will be awarded to the kicking team.

 

  • EXTRA POINT OPTIONS:

The captain must declare choice to the referee prior the setting of ball.

Choices consist of the following:

(a) 1 point conversion, if run or pass ball spotted at the 3 yard line.

(b) 1 point conversion, if kicked ball spotted 5 yards into the end zone. Goal post will be set up 8 yards behind the back of the end zone for a total distance of 13 yards.

(c) 2 point conversion, if run or pass ball spotted at the 10 yard line.

Once declared, it will cost a time out to change this choice (you may not change the choice after a penalty has been called). If a time out is called after declared, team may change choice during that timeout (does not cost a second time-out).

If extra point is not kicked, conversion attempts can be intercepted and returned for points equal those attempted.

If extra point is kicked the following rules apply:

(a) Rushing the A gap is not allowed (can't rush between the snapper & the 2 guards).

(b) Snap must be made as a normal legal snap between the legs (snapper cannot stand up and throw the ball back to the kicker). Ball is live and if dropped is down at the spot.

(c) A blocked or missed field goal/extra point results in a dead ball.

(d) Other NFL rules apply (roughing the kicker etc)

(e) Any contact made with kicker/holder by defensive team will result in extra point being ruled as completed and 1 point will be awarded to the kicking team.

 

  • CLOCK RULES:

Game consist of four 10 minute quarters (swapping field sides at the end of each quarter). The clock will be a running clock for the first 3 quarters.

Each game will consist of a 2 minute halftime.

A 25 second play clock is in effect and delay of game will result in a penalty.

Each team will have two 30 second time outs per half.

In the last 2 minutes of the 2nd half the clock will be stopped on an incomplete pass or a player going out of bounds. And the clock will restart upon snap of the ball.

On a change of possession, the clock will start upon the snap of the ball.

After Penalties the clock will restart upon the snap of the ball.

After a 1st down the clock will restart upon setting of the ball.

 

  • SHOOTOUT FOR TIE GAMES:

Each team is given the ball an equal number of times

Each teams gets 4 downs from the 10 yard line.

Defense may return the ball for a touchdown (same rule apply for extra points intercepted as in normal play).

Extra points are attempted as per previously stated.

During the regular season, if after 1 overtime session the game remains tied, the game ends in a tie.

 

  • SPECIAL RULES:

Ball carriers may spin, but may NOT jump. Jumping is a 10 yard penalty from the spot of the foul.

If any part of the ball carriers body aside from their feet touch the ground they are down at the spot.

Offense must have 3 players on the line of scrimmage (Tackle-Center-Tackle).

No linemen (on either side of the ball) except the center may get into a 3 point stance

Offensive blockers must initiate contact with the defensive rushes. Blockers are not allowed to create a screen block (by leaving hands to the side and not trying to initiate contact).

Defensive Linemen do not have to line up head to head with Offensive Linemen

Defensive linemen will not initiate contact with the offensive lineman. After contact both parties are allowed to block and rush with open hands (means open hands extended from the elbow, and not loaded-up from the sides). In other words, the defensive lineman's initial intentions must be to run around the offensive lineman and not through them.

The Ball is dead upon hitting the ground, except on kickoffs and punts, the ball will become dead only after coming in contact with a player first. (no fumbles).

Receivers must have 2 feet in bounds upon gaining possession of the ball (both in field of play and end zone).

If a player inadvertently loses a flag, one hand touch prevails. An offensive player starting a play without a full set of flags can result in a penalty of illegal equipment. If a player does not have flags they can report to the ref and the ref will declare them eligible (one hand touch will prevail). 

No sleeper plays and no diving to advance the ball will be allowed, and will result in a penalty of unsportsmanlike conduct.

Inadvertent whistles-play is blown dead. If the ball is past the line of scrimmage, ball is spotted at the most forward foot (or the team may have the option of replaying the down). If the ball is behind the line of scrimmage, the play is replayed. On a turnover PRIOR to the whistle, ball is placed at the spot, turnover stands.

Ball is spotted where the flag was pulled (players cannot roll/dive to advance the ball).

Intentional grounding occurs when the ball is thrown away to avoid a sack while between the offensive tackles. If the quarterback is outside of the tackles, the ball can be thrown away, but MUST pass the line of scrimmage (otherwise intentional grounding).

 

  • DOWN FIELD BLOCKING:

Offense and Interceptions - No loading up and or blindside blocking. Referee discretion will be enforced.

Downfield blocking is NOT allowed on Kickoffs or Punts.

 

  • EQUIPMENT & UNIFORMS:

No metal cleats are permitted.

No Pockets or belt loops on pants.

Each team will supply their own ball to the referee upon offense taking the field.

No hard arm pads, hands or wrist pads. Only Soft knee pads may be worn on knee.

Baseball, football, or golf gloves may be worn.

Caps with bills are permitted to be worn backwards.

All Jerseys must be tucked into pants; any player wearing a Jersey which can NOT be tucked in can have their jersey held (i.e. no penalty for grabbing/holding the jersey will be called on the defense).

Sunglasses can be worn on the field of play. The head referee has the right to deem sunglasses or any other type/style of equipment dangerous; any equipment deemed dangerous will be removed immediately with no penalties assessed for the first infraction of the game.

 

  • DEFENSIVE RULES:

No slapping at the ball will be permitted; when the ball is in the possession of another player and will result in a Personal Foul penalty (1st down or penalty can be tacked on to the play).

The defender cannot use contact to break up a pass, this will result in penalty of pass interference.

Only 1 bump or chuck is allowed on receivers and must be within 5 yard of the line of scrimmage.

Contact with a receiver (during pass plays and before the ball is caught) beyond 5 yards from the line of scrimmage will result in a penalty of illegal contact.

No contact with the passer above the waist under any circumstances will be permitted and will result in penalty of roughing the passer; if the referee determines a roughing the passer penalty to be intentional then the player will be ejected from the game.

Defensive holding of any kind will result in penalty.

No tackling will be permitted under any circumstances; this will result in penalty. An early flag pull by a defender (before the offensive player has the ball) will be ruled as a tackling penalty.

No pushing ball carrier out of bounds; this will result in penalty.

 

  • FLAG GUARDING:

All the below items will result in a penalty of flag guarding or charging:

Swinging the hand or arm over the flag to prevent an opponent from removing the flag.

Placing ball in possession over the flag to prevent an opponent from removing the flag.

Lowering the shoulders in such a manner that the defender is shielded from removing the flag.

Holding the flag belt with the hand.

Stiff arming or running directly into the defender.

 

  • PENALTIES:

All penalties not included in the flag football rules will be enforced as in the NFL (National Football League).

Head Referee can overturn calls by the other officials.

Any contact made with kicker by defensive team will result in Field Goal/Extra Point being ruled as completed and relative points will be awarded to the kicking team.

Intentional tackles inside 20 yards of the end zone in a last defender situation will be deemed as a personal foul and a touchdown will be granted. Intentional Tackles outside 20 yards in a last defender situation will also be treated as a personal foul with 15 yards assessed from the spot of the tackle and an automatic first down.

Defensive interference in the End Zone will result in the ball being spotted on the 1 yard line with an automatic first down. No touchdown will be granted.

On the field, only identified captains will engage with the referees. If a coach walks on to the field to converse with the referee, he will automatically be charged a timeout.

 

  • FINES:

There are two types of fines – Player Fines and Team Fines. ALL Team Fines must be paid PRIOR to the next game or the team forfeits the game 7-0. All Player Fines must be paid prior to the next game they play in. All Team AND Player Fines carry over to the next year. 

Team Fines:

$25 fine for using player not on Roster.

$25 fine for last two teams playing to fail to clean the field 

Player Fines:

$50 fine for TWO Unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in the same game. AUTOMATIC EJECTION!

 

  • PLAYER TRANSFER:

No registered player will be allowed to transfer from one club/team to another without the specific permission of the Executive Committee of the Association. Transfer of players between teams registered with the Association will only be allowed during the first four weeks of the season. Any player that wishes to transfer to a new team must inform their current team of their desire to transfer. If there is a dispute between the player and the current team, the player will be required to write to the board stating the reasons for transfer and the board will make a final decision on allowing the transfer. 

The Association shall charge a fee in connection with the transfer; no transfer shall take effect without payment in full of such fee.

Fees are as follows:

1. CI$ 50.00 for transfer after week 1 of the season.
2. CI$ 100.00 for transfer between weeks 2-4 of season (before week 5).

 

  • MISCELLANEOUS RULES:

Verbal abuse of the officials will not be tolerated. The player will be ejected from the game and potentially suspended from the league. If conduct persists from the same team, official has the right to declare a forfeit. This applies to fans as well.

Your team is responsible for the actions of any fans or team members on your sideline and can be penalized because of their actions. If someone on your sideline is not with your team, please bring it to the attention of a game official.

Fighting will not be tolerated. If one player from your team is involved in a skirmish, he will be immediately ejected from the rest of the game. If 2 or more players get into a shoving/wrestling match, THE ENTIRE TEAM will be ejected and potentially suspended from further games, and all monies are forfeited. If any player/coach bumps assaults a referee, that player will be suspended from the league.

Trash talking (including excessive celebrations), racial or religious remarks will not be tolerated. Players will be ejected immediately.

We reserve the right to suspend any player or team for unsportsmanlike conduct. All money will be forfeited.

No littering on the fields. Excessive littering is grounds for disqualification. Please pick up your team's trash, so we can avoid fines and use the fields in the future.

No alcohol is allowed on premises. Sounds like a commercial, but it's against the law.

Protests – a coach has the right to protest an official's interpretation of the rules provided that the protest is made immediately before the next live ball. A coach may also protest a player's eligibility. Protests are $25 each.

A player can only play on one team unless the opposing team captain agrees to allow the player to play against his team. If the opposing team captain agrees then he must explicitly inform the head referee of his decision before the start of the game. In addition, the team using the unofficial player must not have more than 9 of its own players dressed for that game.

 

Please remember that this is a recreational football tournament. The referees and tournament organizers will give all their effort to provide your team with comparable competition. Most importantly, have fun.