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.

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. 

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.

NFL Video Rulebook

The NFL Video Rulebook explains NFL rules with video examples.

2018 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game.

2018 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.   

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.

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.

For the 10th year, the NFL and the American Cancer Society (ACS) are working together to support the fight against cancer through Crucial Catch: Intercept Cancer.” The initiative, which kicks off with this weekend’s games and continues through Week 7 games, addresses early detection and risk reduction efforts for multiple cancers. 

The partnership has raised and donated more than $18.5 million to ACS since 2009. Funds donated through Crucial Catch this season will be directed toward support of three screenable cancers: breast, colorectal and cervical. Funding will continue to support the American Cancer Society Community Health Advocates implementing Nationwide Grants for Empowerment and Equity (CHANGE) Program, a community-based grant program that provides grant opportunities to community health centers to support systems-level change and increased access to low- or no-cost cancer screenings in underserved communities.

Through NFL funding, ACS has also recently awarded $3.2 million in grants to 32 health systems in the 32 NFL markets to address disparities in breast cancer mortality that exist among women of color. Grant funded health systems will receive $100,000 over two years.

Since 2012, CHANGE grants have contributed to 209,900 screenings and have reached more than 632,000 individuals with education, screening reminders and patient navigation. The NFL will also work with ACS and CHANGE grant recipients to host education sessions and/or screenings in their communities, and many NFL teams will participate in these educational activities, bringing these life-saving messages and screening services to those who need them most. ​

As part of the campaign, the NFL and ACS created The Defender, a digital tool which provides consumers, including New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, with personalized tips to reduce their cancer risk. The free tool allows fans to take control of their health and increase their understanding of how healthy lifestyle habits can help reduce their cancer risk. Fans who complete the Defender will have the option to donate to ACS and enter for a chance to win two tickets to Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta, inclusive of travel and other Super Bowl-related events, as part of an ACS contest.

This year’s campaign includes new digital features where NFL players talk about cancer’s impact on their lives. Players including Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins, Lions linebacker Eli Harold and Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson participated in the videos.

NFL-issued Crucial Catch gameday apparel will feature a multi-colored logo representing all cancers. NFL teams have the option of supporting early detection and risk-reduction efforts for one or multiple cancers in-stadium and in their communities. In addition, players may wear cleats, shoelaces and wristbands in any color representing the type of cancer awareness they support and/or have been impacted by during their team's Crucial Catch game.

Beginning on Sunday and continuing through Week 7, NFL Crucial Catch games will feature:

  • Game balls with the Crucial Catch logo
  • Multi-colored equipment for players including: helmet decals, captains' patches, cleats, wristbands, gloves, sideline caps, sideline towels, quarterback towels and shoelaces.
  • Multi-colored ribbon pins for coaches and teams
  • Caps and pins for game officials
  • On-field multi-colored Crucial Catch stencils
  • Multi-colored goal post wraps in end zones
  • Field-wall banners in the color(s) of the cancer awareness movement(s) that each club supports

Game-worn Crucial Catch merchandise and footballs will be autographed and auctioned on NFL Auction. The NFL does not profit from the sale of Crucial Catch merchandise. Charitable contributions are donated to the American Cancer Society to support its CHANGE grant program.

The NFL and all 32 teams support Crucial Catch and the fight against cancer all year long. In October, NFL teams designate home games and plan events with local organizations to bring awareness to the cause.

Crucial Catch also reaches the youth and high school football community across the country. With the help of USA Football, Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera sent a note to youth and high school football coaches nationally, offering ideas for how schools and teams can join the fight against cancer. Interested teams may visit cancer.org/youthcrucialcatch to sign up, pledge to fundraise for ACS, and download a toolkit to support their Crucial Catch game.

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