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.

2017 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game.

NFL Video Rulebook

The NFL Video Rulebook explains NFL rules with video examples.

2017 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.

Football Officiating Academy

Developing skilled football officials at the grass-roots level.

Football at all levels benefits from excellent officiating. Those who wear the stripes on gameday must be confident in their calls for the game to continue to thrive.

Football officials are experts in their craft and act as custodians of the sport. The best are able to take traits needed in officiating — decisiveness, leadership, conflict resolution and clear communication — and apply them to their lives and careers.

The NFL broadens the pool of skilled football officials nationwide through the Football Officiating Academy (FOA). The academy works to build the next generation of football officials, maintain a robust officiating pipeline into the league and enhance the overall perception and understanding of football officiating. At no cost to participants, the academy teaches football fundamentals — along with personal and professional skills that last a lifetime — and it puts the most promising individuals on the path to greater involvement in officiating. 

FOA is the base of the NFL’s officiating development pyramid. It advances the Officiating Department’s objectives: encouraging people to participate in officiating, identifying talented officials and honing their skills so they are ready to officiate at higher levels — including, for the best, in the NFL.


At FOA clinics, junior and high school athletes, former players and football fans study the game, practice making the tough calls, improve officiating skills and physical fitness, and learn lessons of leadership, accountability and teamwork.

FOA participants are trained by the best in the game — NFL scouts, former and current NFL officials and players, and other members of the Officiating Development Program.

FOA classes and on-field exercises cover four main areas of officiating: rules, mechanics, health and fitness, and character development. Participants review videos and study guides and run drills to absorb the rules, proper positioning and mechanics, the correct hand signals and more.

In addition to receiving football training, FOA participants learn character and life skills required of every official and essential to navigating through life, including clear communication, decisiveness, conflict resolution and time management. 

“We’re hoping to build a new generation of officials who are successful and continue the NFL’s legacy.” — Terell Canton, FOA program manager


FOA offers free programs for all levels of officials and fans:

  • Full program: A one-day officiating workshop of basic skill development by classroom instruction and on-field drills.
  • Clinics: Three- to four-hour clinics geared for football clubs, military academies and Women Officiating Now groups that introduce officiating mechanics and game rules.
  • Officiating overviews: One-hour panel-style discussions held at regional combines, PREP 100 games and High School Player Development events that provide basic information on officiating and raise awareness of the profession.
  • Fan engagement: A FOA officiating roadshow to educate fans, former youth athletes and others about NFL officiating programs. The interactive “You Make the Call” booth lets fans “step under the hood” as officials and see if they can make the correct call. 

The NFL's Football Officiating Academy in Carson, California.

FOA is already making important contributions to officiating development. Since the program began in 2010, 160 graduates have officiated in youth and high school leagues. FOA alumni have joined officiating crews in major college football conferences, including the Big 12, Southwestern Athletic Conference and Southern Athletic Association. Elite FOA alums — roughly 10 percent each year — are tracked and developed by the NFL’s Officiating Department and are one step closer to officiating an NFL game.

FOA programs are attracting widespread interest. Participation increased by 40 percent from 2012 to 2013 and continues to grow today. 


The NFL's Football Officiating Academy in Brooklyn, New York.