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.

NFL Way to Play

Knees Bent. Pads Down. Head Up and Out.

The NFL and HBCUs

The NFL is proud of the HBCU professional football legacy.

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. 

Game Day: 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.

Big Data Bowl

The annual analytics contest explores statistical innovations in football — how the game is played and coached.

History of Instant Replay

Upon further review…

Creating the NFL Schedule

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

Youth Football

Promoting the values of football.

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 and services NFL Player Engagement provides to assist every player before, during and after his football career.

College All Star Games

Strengthening football and the community.

NFL Legends Community

Strengthening the NFL brotherhood.

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 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.

NFL Video Rulebook

The NFL Video Rulebook explains NFL rules with video examples.

2019 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game. 6.2.5

2019 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.   

NFL Rules Digest

A quick reference guide to the NFL rulebook.

Football 101

Football 101

Terms Glossary

Sharpen your NFL football knowledge with this glossary of the game's fundamental terms. 

Formations 101

See where the players line up in pro football's most common offensive and defensive formations.

Quick Guide to NFL TV Graphics

Understand what the graphics on NFL television broadcasts mean and how they can help you get the most out of watching NFL games.

NFL Instant Replay Process

The NFL’s instant replay review process focuses on expediting instant replay reviews and ensuring consistency. Learn how it works.

Stats Central

Stats Central

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

The Extra Point

Welcome to the Extra Point, where members of the NFL's football data and analytics team will share updates on league-wide trends in football data, interesting visualizations that showcase innovative ways to use the league's data, and provide an inside look at how the NFL uses data-driven insight to improve and monitor player and team performance.

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.

The Extra Point

Punters in 2019 Were Performing Better Than Ever

While the improvement of NFL placekickers over the last few decades has been celebrated repeatedly, another group of specialists is performing better than they ever have: punters.

Check out the following stats comparing regular season play from 2000 to 2019:

  • Nearly one-quarter of punts (23.3%) from near midfield — between the 48-yard lines — resulted in a touchback in the 2000 season. In 2019, that rate dropped to just under 10% (9.8%). 
  • There were 110 total regular season touchbacks in 2019, 55% fewer than in 2000 when there were 247. 
  • The net punting average was 5.8 yards higher in 2019 than it was in 2000 — even after accounting for differences in field position between the two seasons of play. 
  • The punter with the lowest per-punt average in 2019 — Dallas’ Chris Jones, at 41.6 yards — would have been ranked No. 17 in 2000 — or league average.

The combination of punt distances and net punting averages going up, along with touchback rates going down, means that offensive teams were more likely to be pinned back deep in their own territory in 2019. 

The following chart shows the likelihood of an offensive team starting inside its own 20-yard line after receiving a punt. The lines show different territories of the field, each corresponding to the area from where the opponent punted. 

For example, when a team punted from between its own 31 - and 40-yard lines, only about one in four punts in the early 2000s would pin the receiving team inside its own 20-yard line. In 2019, it was closer to one in two (45.1%). Similarly, when a team punted from between its own 41-yard-line and midfield in 2019, 70.1% of punts pinned the receiving team inside its own 20 — about 1.4 times the rate from 2000.

It’s not just the 20-yard line that teams are finding themselves behind. On kicks from near midfield, the likelihood of the receiving team starting from inside its own 10-yard line went up by a factor of 1.7, from 17.5% in 2000 to 31.0% in 2019.

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