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.

Social Justice

NFL COVID-19 Protocols

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.

Game Day Assistants

See the NFL personnel at every game, what they do and you can identify them. 

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 five NFL executives to create the NFL’s 256-game masterpiece.

Big Data Bowl

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

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.

NFL Legends Community

Strengthening the NFL brotherhood.

NFL Total Wellness

NFL Total Wellness assists players, Legends and their families before, during and after their playing experiences.

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.

2020 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game.

2020 Rules Changes and Points of Emphasis

NFL Overtime Rules

Signals Intelligence

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

NFL Tiebreaking Procedures

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

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.

Seven of the eight clubs that remain in contention for a trip to Super Bowl LIV in Miami were not in the Divisional playoffs last year. That’s the largest year-to-year turnover in the Divisional round since the current 12-team playoff format was first instituted in 1990. This means a total of 15 teams have been one win away from the AFC or NFC Championship Game since the beginning of the 2018 playoffs.

This weekend’s schedule:

Saturday, January Jan. 11

NFC

Minnesota Vikings at San Francisco 49ers

4:35 p.m. EST

NBC

AFC

Tennessee Titans at Baltimore Ravens

8:15 p.m. EST

CBS

Sunday, Jan. 12

AFC

Houston Texans at Kansas City Chiefs

3:05 p.m. EST

CBS

NFC

Seattle Seahawks at Green Bay Packers

6:40 p.m. EST

FOX


The sixth-seeded Titans’ 20-13 win at New England last week ensured that there will be two new teams playing in the Super Bowl for the first time in four years. They will travel to face the AFC’s top-seeded Ravens on Saturday (8:15 p.m. EST, CBS).All four NFC teams — Green Bay, Minnesota, San Francisco and Seattle — and three AFC teams — Baltimore, Houston and Tennessee — are new to the final eight this year. Only Kansas City is making a second straight appearance in the Divisional playoffs.

The NFC’s No. 6 seed, Minnesota, won 26-20 in overtime at New Orleans last week to advance to the Divisional round, where top-seeded San Francisco awaits on Saturday (4:35 p.m. EST, NBC).

For the first time in NFL history, the No. 6 seeds have advanced to the Divisional playoffs in consecutive years — Minnesota and Tennessee this year, and Indianapolis and Philadelphia in 2018.

The average age of the eight quarterbacks scheduled to start this weekend is 28 years, 271 days old, the youngest average age of starting quarterbacks in the Divisional playoffs since the 2010 season (28 years, 197 days).

Since Super Bowl LI when New England topped Atlanta 34-28 in the first overtime Super Bowl in history, postseason games have been fiercely competitive. Beginning with that Super Bowl, the last 27 postseason contests have been decided by just 8.1 points on average.

  • Four of the NFL’s last seven postseason games have gone to overtime.
  • Road teams are a combined 8-6 over the last 14 NFL playoff games (excluding the neutral-field Super Bowl LIII).

Seven of the league’s eight remaining teams finished among the top 10 in turnover margin this season. Green Bay (+12) and Seattle (+12), which tied for third during the regular season and meet Sunday at Lambeau Field (6:40 p.m., FOX), have the best turnover margins among the remaining teams. Minnesota (+11, fifth), Baltimore (+10, sixth), Kansas City (+8, tied-seventh), Tennessee (+6, ninth) and San Francisco (+4, tied-10th) also ranked in the top 10 this season.

A closer look at each of the Divisional Playoff games:

Minnesota Vikings (11-6) at San Francisco 49ers (13-3) (Saturday, 4:35 p.m. EST, NBC)

  • Minnesota and San Francisco have met five times in the postseason with the 49ers holding a 4-1 advantage. The Vikings won in the 1987 Divisional playoffs, but San Francisco took the Divisional matchups with Minnesota in each of the next two seasons, along the way to winning consecutive Super Bowls. The 49ers also won a 1997 Divisional playoff and beat the Vikings at Metropolitan Stadium in 1970.
  • The Vikings defeated New Orleans last week, 26-20, in overtime. Minnesota quarterback Kirk Cousins led a nine-play, 75-yard touchdown drive in overtime, which ended with a 4-yard pass to tight end Kyle Rudolph. Minnesota’s Dalvin Cook had 130 scrimmage yards (94 rushing, 36 receiving) and two rushing touchdowns in the win.
  • The 49ers won the NFC West for the first time since 2012. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (102 passer rating) joined Joe Montana and Steve Young as the only 49ers QBs to finish a season with a passer rating of 100 or higher since 1950. Tight end George Kittle (2,945 receiving yards) surpassed Mike Ditka (2,774) for the most receiving yards by a tight end over his first three NFL seasons.

Tennessee Titans (10-7) at Baltimore Ravens (14-2) (Saturday, 8:15 p.m. EST, CBS)

  • The Titans and Ravens have met three times in the playoffs, with Baltimore holding a 2-1 lead. On their way to winning Super Bowl XXXV in 2000, the Ravens won at Tennessee in the Divisional round. The Ravens also won in Nashville in 2008 in the Divisional round, while the Titans won a 2003 Wild Card game in Baltimore.
  • Tennessee won a second playoff game in three seasons with their road win at New England last week. The Titans are the fourth team since the 1970 merger to feature the league’s top-rated passer and top rusher. Tennessee’s Ryan Tannehill led the NFL with a 117.5 passer rating during the regular season and Derrick Henry led the league with 1,540 rushing yards. Henry rushed for 182 yards and a touchdown last week, the most rushing yards in a postseason game since Green Bay’s Ryan Grant ran for 201 yards in a 2007 Divisional playoff win over Seattle at Lambeau Field.
  • The Ravens led the league with 33.2 points per game, had a league-high 12 players named to the Pro Bowl and a franchise-best 14 wins. Baltimore broke the team single-season record with 3,296 rushing yards — including 1,206 from Lamar Jackson — the most yards by a quarterback in a single season in NFL history. Mark Andrews led NFL tight ends with 10 receiving touchdowns and caught a team-best 64 passes. Cornerback Marcus Peters had five interceptions during the 2019 season.

Houston Texans (11-6) at Kansas City Chiefs (12-4) (Sunday, 3:05 p.m. EST, CBS)

  • The Texans and Chiefs have played once in the postseason — a 2015 Wild Card game won by Kansas City. In Week 6 this season, Houston beat Kansas City, 31-24, at Arrowhead Stadium.
  • Houston came back to win, 22-19, in overtime in last weekend’s Wild Card round, after trailing Buffalo 16-0 in the third quarter. Quarterback Deshaun Watson escaped two defenders and completed a 34-yard pass to running back Taiwan Jones to set up the game-winning field goal. Houston’s Deandre Hopkins tied for the AFC lead with 104 catches in 2019. Houston’s Whitney Mercilus has seven sacks in seven career postseason games, while J.J. Watt has six sacks in seven playoff games.
  • The Chiefs won the AFC West for a fourth straight season. Head coach Andy Reid makes his 15th appearance in the playoffs. Patrick Mahomes is the first quarterback in franchise history to pass for at least 4,000 yards and 25-or-more touchdowns in consecutive seasons. Travis Kelce became the first tight end in NFL history with at least 1,000 receiving yards in four consecutive seasons.
  • The Chiefs were known as the Dallas Texans from 1960-62 before relocating to Kansas City in 1963.

Seattle Seahawks (12-5) at Green Bay Packers (13-3) (Sunday, 6:40 p.m. EST, FOX)

  • The Seahawks and Packers have met three times in the playoffs, with Green Bay holding a 2-1 advantage. In 2003, Green Bay beat Seattle in the Wild Card round on an overtime interception for a touchdown. The Packers topped the Seahawks in a snowy 2007 Divisional playoff game at Lambeau Field. In the 2014 NFC Championship, Seattle overcame a 16-point halftime deficit to win in overtime and advance to Super Bowl XLIX.
  • Aaron Rodgers (99.4 passer rating) and Russell Wilson (96.0) rank fifth and sixth, respectively, in postseason passer efficiency with a minimum of 100 attempts, and they’re the only remaining starting quarterbacks in this year’s playoff who have won Super Bowls.
  • The Seahawks had seven sacks in their Wild Card win at Philadelphia last week — a franchise single-game postseason record. Pete Carroll has led Seattle to the playoffs in eight of his 10 seasons as head coach. Wilson passed for 325 yards and a touchdown in the win over the Eagles. Marshawn Lynch has 10 rushing touchdowns in 12 career playoff games. Last week, DK Metcalf had a touchdown catch and 160 receiving yards — most by a rookie in a postseason game in the Super Bowl era.
  • Green Bay won the NFC North for the first time since 2016 and tied Baltimore for the most home wins this season with seven. Matt LaFleur joined Jim Caldwell (2009), Jim Harbaugh (2011), Steve Mariucci (1997) and George Seifert (1989) as one of five head coaches in league history to win at least 13 games in his first season. Aaron Rodgers ranks fifth in NFL postseason history in touchdown passes (36). Aaron Jones tied for the league lead in rushing touchdowns (16) and scrimmage touchdowns (19). Linebackers Za’Darius Smith (13.5) and Preston Smith (12) are the first pair of Packers teammates to each record at least 12 sacks since the individual sack became an official statistic in 1982.
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