What Is The Definition Of Touchback In Football?
1. This is a term used in football to describe when a player receives a kickoff or punt from behind their own goal line and then proceeds to down the ball in their end zone, instead of trying to return the ball. The ball must cross over the goal line from a kick from their opponent.
A player cannot receive the ball in their end zone, then cross the goal line in a return attempt, then run back into the end zone in order to get a touchback. If they do run back into the end zone and are tackled by their opponent, they will then be charged with a safety.
A touchback can occur under these circumstances:
- The receiving player catches the ball in the end zone and drops to one knee.
- The ball touches any part of the end zone.
- The ball touches the end zone and it comes out of the end zone without either of the teams having possession.
- The ball is kicked over the end zone and out of bounds.
The result of a touchback is that the receiving team gets the ball at their own 25-yard line.
Examples Of How Touchback Is Used In Commentary
1. Hester receives the kickoff deep in his end zone, but will gladly take a knee for the touchback. The Bears will start the second half at their own 20-yard line.
SportsLingo Goes the Extra-Inch With The Meaning Of Touchback
In March of 2016, the NFL announced that if a player elects to receive a touchback, the ball would be spotted at the 25-yard line instead of the previous 20-yard line. This new rule change went into affect during the 2016 NFL season. With this new rule change, the NFL was hoping to cut back on injuries to special teams players who elect to return the kicks instead of kneeling in the end zone, as the number of concussions (and other injuries) on the field had been rising. By moving the spot of the ball to the 25-yard line, this would give the team a good starting point on the field and therefore would hopefully entice players to kneel in the end zone for a touchback.
Sports The Term Is Used