American Football

There must be more to life than football?
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Jim
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American Football

Post by Jim » Fri Apr 13, 2007 11:54 pm

Yes... your eyes don't deceive you... this is a thread about the \"other\" kind of football, the one laughed at for years by about 95% of the British public.

I've heard it all... usually \"Rugby for puffs\" comes to mind and it does get tiresome, so if you have nothing to contribute to this thread then kindly do me a favour and piss off! :D

Now I play Gridiron for my local side, the Doncaster Mustangs if you look on our main page and our roster you'll see my name mentioned a few times! I think i'm doing really well. I currently play D-line which is basically dumb muscle... you just try to get past the big guy directly in front of you and pressure the QB all game. Not much in it but its getting me fitter and fitter.

I hope this thread will be a place for any american football chat, whichever team you support or whether your a newcomer to the sport and just wanting to get a few pointers.

I support the New England Patriots in the NFL. They have won 3 of the last 5 superbowls (something of a record in the salary cap era of american football) and are widely respected for their professionalism and team spirit which is all but unique in the NFL. Our management is extremely good, from the owners down through the head coaches and co-ordinators and down to the position coaches, scouts and minor staff. Our team spirit is unique purely because egos of any kind are not tolerated... if any one player considers himself above and beyond the team, then he is going to be looking for another team.

The Pats have no place for sentiment. If a player isn't pulling his weight or is asking for too much money then he will be let go of and we will just replace him, whether it effects our chances or not. The \"team\" comes before any player. Its worked brilliantly for us these past few years. We were literally a dead-end franchise until some excellent draft picks, a change in ownership and management turned us into the best in the NFL. A real cinderella transformation.

Anyway its the NFL offseason now but the news is coming thick and fast... free agency is still lingering around and the highlight of the offseason is quickly approaching... the NFL Draft. Its more exciting than some games because the draft in the past has made and broken franchises. The draft is split over 2 days... rounds 1 to 3 is on Saturday and players taken in these rounds are generally high quality players who could end up starting and making appearances in their rookie seasons. Rounds 4 to 7 are on the Sunday and these players are projects... works in progress. A few go on to start or be backups in their first seasons but the majority are development projects, particulary in the lower rounds (6 & 7) where players will take a few seasons of hard training to develop.

Anyway hope this takes off, does anyone else here actively follow the NFL?[/url]

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Post by Ash » Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:16 am

Only American Football i've watched is the superbowl, but finally this year I actually understand the rules now and what all the number like 10&2 mean so I may get into a bit more. When I went to Florida about 4 years ago I saw a Tampa Bay Bucaneers pre-season camp at Disneyland, that was quite good. Know a bit about the draft system as we studied it at P.E A-level.

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Simon
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Post by Simon » Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:18 am

Why is a largely hand based game called football?

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Dr Rover
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Post by Dr Rover » Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:23 am

Simon wrote:Why is a largely hand based game called football?
Rugby is a largely hand based game yet it is known as Ruby Football League/Union

I think it is to do with the fact that the ball used is called a football

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winston_the_cat
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Post by winston_the_cat » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:11 am

Jim, I'd say from my experience that American Football is rather more than just a game for the 'folks back home'. Every fixture is a huge event, with far more going on than the match. That side of it, be it 'tailgating' from 7 in the morning and drinking quantities of beer that would make our football fans blush, or the ceremony during the game, meaning marching bands, not just cheerleaders, or, at college football level, 'homecoming' when the town closes and not just the team, but anyone with a hobby, parade around for 5 hours, can only be experienced in the US.

I went to college football games (MSU, East Lansing, along with 70,000 others, paying $40 plus per ticket - for a big 10 college game!!!), and began to understand the attraction. I understood the rules of the game already. What I found fascinating was the interest in a team that was entirely transitory. The college cycle is 3 (possibly 4) years. So, from freshman to senior, you get 4 seasons to crack it. And all around you, team mates come and go in massive numbers from one season to the next. So, no continuity, and indeed, no 'future' for any one season's generation, and yet everyone still believes in an 'identity' (MSU was the Spartans!).

I found it difficult to get a feel for the identity but after going to a couple of games, and watching others on tv, or listening on the radio, I began to see the attraction. I must admit, since I left MSU and came back to Germany, I haven't really followed the Spartans, except to know that in 2006 they had a disaster and the serial choker, John L. Smith (ex-head coach) was finally put out of his misery (million dollar contract - payed by a state university!!!).

Anyhow, I guess the level of intense association isn't quite there in Europe . And even our football fans don't go quite as far in some senses as the American football followers over there do.

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Post by Rover the Top » Mon Apr 16, 2007 9:49 am

Dr Rover wrote:
Simon wrote:Why is a largely hand based game called football?
Rugby is a largely hand based game yet it is known as Ruby Football League/Union

I think it is to do with the fact that the ball used is called a football
Rugby football is so called because someone at Rugby school picked up the ball and ran into the goal with it whilst playing association football. And was credited with inventing a new game instead of being branded a cheat... :-? I've always assumed that the other forms of football are variations of rugby football... :|

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Post by mrblackbat » Mon Apr 16, 2007 10:21 am

Rover the Top wrote:
Dr Rover wrote:
Simon wrote:Why is a largely hand based game called football?
Rugby is a largely hand based game yet it is known as Ruby Football League/Union

I think it is to do with the fact that the ball used is called a football
Rugby football is so called because someone at Rugby school picked up the ball and ran into the goal with it whilst playing association football. And was credited with inventing a new game instead of being branded a cheat... :-? I've always assumed that the other forms of football are variations of rugby football... :|
Indeed American Football is a variation of Rugby:-
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_football#History

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Rover the Top
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Post by Rover the Top » Mon Apr 16, 2007 10:30 am

mrblackbat wrote:
Rover the Top wrote: I've always assumed that the other forms of football are variations of rugby football... :|
Indeed American Football is a variation of Rugby:-
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_football#History
Hmm, and baseball is 'American rounders', but netball was actually a variation of basketball...

Still, American Rugby is a silly game, even if it is great fun on the Wii. :lol:

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Post by theadore » Mon Apr 16, 2007 3:50 pm

I used to watch American football when it was on channel 4 at a sensible hour and real players like Joe Montana and the Fridge played the game… however.

Things I don’t understand about American football…

1) Where to teams come from and go to… I basically understand the idea of a brand moving to different cities, but who decides that the Raiders move to LA and then back to Oakland? Or the Rams move out to St. Louis? And why? What penalty is there for finishing bottom all the time?

2) When you punt, if you run down the pitch and pick the ball up why can’t you run in and score?

3) Can only the quarter back throw the ball forward? Otherwise surely teams would be best to have a couple of players with a bit of chucking ability to throw off the defence.

4) Can the ball be passed backwards a la rugby? I’ve seen this happen once or twice, but it seems that once perfected a couple of passes per play and a well timed grubber kick would be useful in beating a defence who just throw themselves at the nearest player and hope they come off better.

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Mon Apr 16, 2007 4:15 pm

1) In American for the most part the franchise is more important than the location its based and all it boils down to in the end is simple economics... In the current NFL age there are many cities screaming out for a NFL team that would have much more fans, more income and more coverage for a disgruntled franchise. L.A is the forerunner... Toronto over the border into Canada is another, and there are the desert duo of Las Vegas and San Antonio who are also in the running. Rumour has it that the Buffalo Bills are only a few more poor seasons away from heading over the border to become the Toronto Bills.

There hasn't been a team change location for years. There have only been expansion teams (Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars are two of these.)

In the end the teams owner has the final say. Al Davis, the old twat in charge of the Raiders, is one of the worst owners in the game. He is more Head Coach than owner and has his say in even the most trivial matters of management on a daily basis.

As for the penalty for finishing as the worst team every season... well its just pride. There is no relegation, the team will probably keep raking in the moolah, keep its fanbase and its location... and the final positions in a season decide on the draft positions. Worst team gets the #1 pick and as such gets the best draft prospect that year. The superbowl winners get the last (32nd) pick.

2) The defense can only run and score off a punt return if the ball is fumbled by the other sides ball carrier. The only other thing they can do is touch the ball to kill it ending the play.

3) Anyone can throw the ball provided they are behind the line of scrimmage. Check out the 2005 Superbowl to see Randall El (a WR) throw a inch perfect touchdown pass to give the Steelers the win. The Chargers have also had a lot of success by handing the ball off to LaDainian Tomlinson (far and away the best running back in the game) who has thrown a shocking number of touchdowns in his career.

4) The ball can be offloaded backwards or sideswards, known in the game as a lateral. One such situation is the \"flea flicker\" pass play where the QB pitches the ball to the running back, who throws it back. Hopefully catching the defense off guard. Also watch the Longest Yard... that would be theoretically possible if a team wanted to risk it I believe.

Grubber kicks and any other type of kick isn't a viable option in the NFL... if a player loses control of the ball out of his hands then the ball is a fumble and can be recovered by the opposition ending a teams offensive drive. The only kicks made are punts or field goals/point afters and the kickoff.

Hope this somewhat answers your questions.

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