Our first three “rules” questions . . .

First of all, let me share with everyone out there that I am happy to provide answers to your football scoring and rules questions.  We got our first three inquiries today from Jim, so here goes:


1. Time of Possession – is a punt on 4th down attributed to the kicking team’s Time of Possession?

Yes.  Time of possession after a punt starts on the first offensive play from scrimmage.  It is, however, different on kick-offs.  Since the clock does not start until the receiving team touches the ball, time of possession begins on a kick-off as soon as a return starts.


2. Is a sack and the minus yardage it’s own stat or does it come off the passing or rushing stats?

OK, sacks are an actual NFL stat, and so are the yards lost.  But, when tabulating the team stats at the end of a game, you would subtract sack yardage from passing yardage to determine the total number of passing yards to credit each team.

Now, if, in the opinion of the official scorer, the quarterback was attempting a run and was tackled behind the line of scrimmage, it is NOT a sack.  The exception to this is when it is clear that the team was attempting a pass and the quarterback scrambled and got tackled for no gain or a loss.  This is still a sack.  So, when you’re playing APBA Football and you get a scramble number and it results in either no gain or a loss, you should count that as a sack.

If you are playing APBA college teams, it is completely different.  The NCAA does not recognize sacks.  Any yardage lost when a passer is tackled behind the line of scrimmage is considered RUSHING yardage.  So, the quarterback would be given one rushing attempt for whatever negative yardage occurs on the play.


3. Last, a QB scramble, I assume, is a rushing stat, correct?

Again, not necessarily.  If the scramble results in 0 yards or lost yardage, it is not a run, it is a sack.  If, however, the quarterback gets positive yardage on his scramble, it is considered a rushing attempt.

2 thoughts on “Our first three “rules” questions . . .

    • No. Because, if there was a penalty, most of the time no actual third down took place – there was not a run or a pass. And, even if the penalty is tacked on to the end of a play, for a facemask, or unnecessary roughness, if the actual gain on the play did not result in a first down, then there is no third down conversion, even if the penalty would have resulted in a first down.

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