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. 


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.

The NFL has launched the third annual Big Data Bowl, a joint initiative between the NFL and Amazon Web Services that uses data and technology to make the game more exciting for fans and to protect players from unnecessary risk. Using Next Gen Stats powered by AWS, the 2020-2021 Big Data Bowl is a crowdsourcing competition that calls on professional and aspiring data analysts to devise innovative approaches to analyzing pass coverage in the NFL.

Interested participants can sign-up on for the 2020-21 Big Data Bowl. Professional and aspiring analysts will use Next Gen Stats player tracking data to predict pass coverage schemes and identify which NFL defensive backs perform the best in pass coverage. The 2020-21 competition’s participants will use player tracking data on all passing plays from the 2018 regular season, provided by the NFL.

The deadline for submission is January 7, 2021. After the deadline, all Big Data Bowl entries will be judged by data analysts from NFL clubs. Finalists will be announced in early 2021 and will share a prize of $100,000.

Over the past three years, the Big Data Bowl has asked participants to explore statistical innovations in the NFL using real-time data for every player, on every play, in every situation. The competition challenges the data analytics community to rethink trends in player performance and innovate the way football is played and coached.

The Big Data Bowl is just one example of how the NFL drives advancements in the game by making football data publicly available. The 2020 season will also mark the sixth annual 1st and Future competition, the NFL's annual pitch contest designed to spur innovation in athlete safety and performance, also a centerpiece of the league's partnership with AWS.

"The NFL continues to find new ways to use data to advance the game – using Next Gen Stats to fuel the Big Data Bowl is a prime example," said Michael Lopez, NFL director of football data and analytics. "The league has grown both on and off the field with the use of analytics, and by crowdsourcing to talented individuals around the globe, the Big Data Bowl gives the NFL greater exposure, depth, and insight into what data can do to support the future of the game."

New this year, the Big Data Bowl will feature a mentorship program where 16 junior data scientists from diverse backgrounds are connected with experienced NFL analytics experts to curate a Big Data Bowl submission.

Following the 2018-19 and 2019-20 Big Data Bowl competitions, 14 participants were later hired by NFL clubs or affiliate vendors. The 2019-20 Big Data Bowl featured more than 2,000 participating teams with participants from 32 countries. The winning algorithm from the 2019-20 contest, which provided predictions for rushing play outcomes, was adopted by the NFL's analytics team as one of this season's new Next Gen Stats and has been used and shared with NFL clubs and media during the 2020 season.

For additional information on this year's Big Data Bowl, visit: