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.

Technology

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

NFL SVP of Officiating Dean Blandino 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.

During week 2 of the 2015 preseason, the NFL will experiment with eight officials on the field of play. The league has used seven-person officiating crews since adding the side judge to crews in 1978.

Learn more about the history of NFL Officials.

During week 2 of the preseason, the league will be testing an additional official in the field of play and whether that eighth official will help improve the officiating process.

“We are going to look at positioning the eighth official in a couple of different areas,” said NFL Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino. “We want to try to fill some of the holes that may happen in specific situations over the course of a game.”

The extra crew member will be tested in 13 of the weekend’s 16 games. In eight games, the extra official will be positioned in the offensive backfield, joining the referee and the umpire. From this location, the “U2” will focus on the center pre-snap and the guard and tackle on the side of the formation closest to where he or she is positioned.

Positioning for the "U2" official.

Positioning for the "U2" official.

In five games, the extra official will line up approximately 20 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage. From there, the “CJ” or “center judge” will focus on the center and two guards, with a particular emphasis on spotting defensive holding penalties.

Positioning for the "CJ" official.

Positioning for the "CJ" official.

“In order to apply the rules correctly on Sundays, you have to be in the right place at the right time,” said Al Riveron, Senior Director of Officiating.

Blandino’s staff will collect feedback and evaluate the experiment from the 13 games. The results potentially may determine that additional testing is needed. When they have enough information, they may decide to keep the current crews at seven officials, or to recommend to the NFL’s Competition Committee that the league add an eighth official on game days.

The experiment is part of the NFL Officiating Department’s commitment to constantly exploring and improving all areas of officiating.

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