Football Ops

Football Ops

Protecting the integrity of the greatest game.

NFL Ops: Honoring the Game

It's our responsibility to strengthen the sport.

League Governance

Ensuring a consistent and fair game that is decided on the field, by the players.

NFL Rules Enforcement

Ensuring that players conduct themselves in a way that honors the sport and respects the game.

Fines & Appeals

The NFL's schedule of infractions and fines, and a process for appeal.

Economic & Social Impact

Honoring the league’s commitment to serve the communities where the game is played.

The NFL Ops Team

Meet the people behind NFL Operations.

The Game

The Game

Learn about the people, the jobs and the technology that deliver the best game possible to NFL fans across the U.S. and around the world. 

Gameday: Behind the Scenes

Countdown to kickoff: how NFL games happen.


In the NFL, balancing technology with tradition.

Impact of Television

How television has changed the game.

History of Instant Replay

Upon further review…

Creating the NFL Schedule

It takes hundreds of computers and four NFL executives to create the NFL's 256-game masterpiece.

The Players

The Players

Learn how NFL players have changed over time, how they’re developed and drafted and how the league works with them after their playing days are over.  

Evolution of the NFL Player

Creating an NFL player: from “everyman” to “superman.”

Development Pipeline

Supporting the next generation of players and fans.

Getting Into the Game

Preparing players of all ages for success at football’s highest level.

The NFL Draft

Introducing the next wave of NFL superstars. 

NFL Player Engagement

A look at the programs the NFL and its partners provide to help every player before, during and after his football career.

NFL Legends Community

Celebrating, educating, embracing and connecting all former NFL players with each other, their former teams and the league.

The Officials

The Officials

Discover the evolution of professional officiating, the weekly evaluation process and how the NFL identifies and develops the next generation of officials.

In Focus: History of the Official

“One thing hasn’t changed: the pressure. It will always be there.”

Inside NFL GameDay Central

The latest information from the NFL's officiating command center.

These Officials Are Really Good

Every week, officials take the field ready to put months of preparation, training and hard work on display, knowing that the whole world — and the Officiating Department — is watching.

Officiating Development

Officiating an NFL game takes years of training and experience. 

The Rules

The Rules

NFL Football Operations protects the integrity of the game by ensuring that the rules and the officiating are consistent and fair to all competitors.

In Focus: Evolution of the NFL Rules

The custodians of football not only have protected its integrity, but have also revised its playing rules to protect the players, and to make the games fairer and more entertaining.

2016 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game.

NFL Video Rulebook

The NFL Video Rulebook explains NFL rules with video examples.

2016 Rules Changes and Points of Emphasis

NFL Overtime Rules

NFL Tiebreaking Procedures

The NFL's procedures for breaking ties for postseason playoffs.

Signals Intelligence

The NFL's familiar hand signals help fans better understand the game.   

Stats Central

Stats Central

Go inside the game with the NFL's official game stats.  Sort the stats by season or by week.

Chart The Data

Chart and compare the NFL Football Operations stats you're looking for with the NFL's data tool. 

Weekly Dashboard

Get a snapshot of the current NFL game stats, updated weekly during the regular season.

Maia Chaka

Maia Chaka

Officiating Development Program (ODP) participant, 2014 – present
NCAA Official, 2013–present

Growing up in Rochester, N.Y., Maia Chaka played “pretty much every sport under the sun” — except football.

“After all my playing days were done, officiating was a way of staying involved in sports,” Chaka said. “I chose football because I was never able to play it.”

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Chaka, a physical education teacher at a school for at-risk students in Virginia Beach, Va., began officiating at the high school level. After five years of working varsity-level games, she attended an officiating camp, where she caught the eye of a former NFL official, Gerald Austin, now the supervisor of officials for Conference USA. Austin invited her to officiate an East Carolina University scrimmage.

“It was basically a job interview or an audition,” she said.

She passed the audition. Austin hired her immediately after the scrimmage.

In 2014, as she entered her eighth season in stripes, Chaka was invited to join the NFL’s Officiating Development Program (ODP). ODP officials — the top non-NFL officials in the country — are the first to be considered to fill openings on NFL crews. As an ODP participant, Chaka is mentored by veteran NFL officials, works minicamps, attends clinics and officiates a preseason game.

“I’ve gotten so much feedback,” she said. “But the main thing is to always be calm. Control what you can control. Go out there, be confident and own your position.”

In 2014, Chaka got her first NFL experience as back judge for a preseason game between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles. She admits that looking up at the numerous Super Bowl banners proudly hanging in Gillette Stadium was “surreal,” but once play began, it was just another game.

“You never know where you’ll end up if you try doing something,” she said.

As one of the top officiating prospects in the country, Chaka could become the first permanent female official in the NFL. But while she knows her potential place in league history, she makes one thing clear: “I’m an official first.”

Chaka continues to improve her knowledge of the rules, mechanics and skills at the college level. She knows that if the NFL comes calling, she’ll be ready.