RULE 1 — CONDUCT OF THE GAME

SECTION 9 — OUT OF BOUNDS

Article 1 — Definitions#

The ball is Out of Bounds when it touches a Sideline, Sideline in Goal, Dead Line or the ground or any other object on or beyond these lines. The ball is Out of Bounds when a player in possession of the ball touches a Sideline, Sideline in Goal, Dead Line or the ground or any other object on or beyond these lines.

NOTE: The ball shall remain in play when it is knocked or batted back into the Field of Play by a player who is off the ground and who has not touched the ground or any object Out of Bounds, see Rule 1, Section 9, Article 3.

NOTE: If a player gains possession of the ball while off the ground in bounds and is contacted by an opponent and lands Out of Bounds in possession of the ball, such player shall retain possession.

NOTE: A player who gains possession of the ball near the Sideline and touches the ground in bounds with the first step shall retain possession even if the next step is Out of Bounds.

Article 2 — Ball Kicked Out Of Bounds#

When the ball is kicked Out of Bounds in the Field of Play, it shall belong to the opposite team, subject to the penalty applicable on a kickoff.

Article 3 — Ball Fumbled Out Of Bounds#

When, on any play, the ball is fumbled Out of Bounds, or touches a player in the Field of Play and then goes Out of Bounds, it shall belong to the team that last touched the ball in the Field of Play.

A team shall be entitled to possession when a player of the team, while off the ground, knocks or bats the ball directly Out of Bounds, provided he lands in bounds.

The ball shall next be scrimmaged:

  1. at the point where the ball went Out of Bounds or,
  2. at the point where the ball was last touched in the Field of Play, whichever point is closer to the Goal Line of the team entitled to possession.

Article 4 — Ball Going Into Opponent's Goal Area#

When a player directs the ball, other than by kicking, from the Field of Play over the opponent's Goal Line and hence Out of Bounds in the Goal Area without the ball touching an opponent, it shall be ruled as a fumble Out of Bounds in the Field of Play, with the ball declared dead at the point where it was last touched in the Field of Play.

Article 5 — Ball Going Into Own Goal Area#

When a player fumbles or directs the ball from the Field of Play into his own Goal Area, where the ball goes Out of Bounds without possession being gained by either team, a safety touch score shall be awarded.

Article 6 — Ball Touched In Goal Area#

When a player directs the ball other than by kicking, from the Field of Play over the opponent's Goal Line where it is recovered by an opponent, or is touched by an opponent before going Out of Bounds in the Goal Area, there shall be no score and the ball shall be awarded to the opponent's team at its 25-yard line. If in attempting to run the ball out of the Goal Area, the opponent's team commits an infraction the penalty shall be applied from the 25-yard line.

Article 7 — Ball Fumbled Out Of Goal Area#

When a team in its own Goal Area fumbles or directs the ball, other than by kicking, across the Goal Line and Out of Bounds in the Field of Play without touching an opponent, the non-offending team may:

  1. accept a two-point score if the offending team had previously directed the ball into its own Goal Area or,
  2. accept a one-point score if the non-offending team had kicked the ball into the Goal Area or,
  3. decline the score and require the team entitled to possession to scrimmage the ball 24 yards in from the point where the ball went Out of Bounds or,
  4. if prior to the fumble or offside pass Out of Bounds, the player's team had gained possession in its Goal Area by intercepting a forward pass or recovering an opponent's fumble from the Field of Play, it shall be awarded the ball at its 25-yard line without option.

Article 8 — Illegal Participation#

A player of either team, who goes Out of Bounds, except as a result of bodily contact, must remain out of that play.

PENALTY: L10

If such player reaches back into or re-enters the field of play and touches or recovers a loose ball:

PENALTY: LB PF

Article 9 — Ball Kicked Out Of Bounds In Own Goal Area#

When a team in its own Goal Area kicks the ball Out of Bounds in its own Goal Area, the ball shall be deemed to have become dead in the Goal Area and the opponent shall be awarded:

  1. a single point if the ball had been kicked into the Goal Area by the opponent or,
  2. a safety touch score if the ball had been kicked, passed or carried into the Goal Area by the team scored against.

If the team in its own Goal Area had gained possession through interception of a forward pass or recovery of an opponent's fumble, there shall be no score and the team shall take possession at its 25-yard line.

If, under similar circumstances, a team should kick the ball Out of Bounds in the opponent's Goal Area without gaining possession, the play shall be ruled as though the opponent had kicked the ball out of its own Goal Area.

THE OFFICIAL PLAYING RULES FOR THE CANADIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE 2009

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The CFL Official Rule Book is published annually by the Canadian Football League. Any inquiries regarding the CFL Official Playing Rules may be directed to George Black at gblack@cfl.ca.