Interference takes place when a player obstructs, blocks, screens or charges towards an opponent, with or without direct contact, in such a manner that prevents the opponent's approach to the ball carrier, potential ball carrier or the ball. Blocking is identified as the act of creating interference with contact.

  1. On a play from scrimmage, a Team A player may interfere with an opponent from Dead Line to Dead Line commencing from the instant the ball is snapped, except in the case of:
    1. a play during which a forward pass is thrown across the line of scrimmage or,
    2. a play during which the ball is kicked across the line of scrimmage.
  2. For interference on a forward pass play, see Rule 6, Section 4, Article 8.
  3. On a kicking play, a Team A player may interfere with an opponent up to one yard in advance of the line of scrimmage.
  4. A Team A player may use hands, open or closed, and may thrust them forward to contact an opponent, provided that the hands are kept inside the elbows and contact is made from the front or side of the opponent within the frame of the opponent's body that is presented to the blocker.
  5. Hands may not be thrust forward above the frame to contact the opponent on the neck, face or head.


  1. On any play from scrimmage, a Team B player may use hands and arms to reach the ball carrier, but shall not hold or encircle any Team A player, other than the ball carrier.

    PENALTY: L10

  2. For interference on a forward pass play, see Rule 6, Section 4, Article 8(b).
  3. For interference on a kicking play, see Rule 5, Section 4, Article 4.

It shall be illegal for a player of either team to block an opponent below the waist except when the block occurs in an area between the tight ends or tight end position, within 2 yards of the defensive side of the line of scrimmage extending back to the initial position of the quarterback or kicker. A player initiating a block below the waist in this area must be positioned in this zone at the snap of the ball for the block to be legal.


NOTE: If such an illegal low block also meets the criteria for an Unnecessary Roughness penalty such as but not limited to Clipping, Blocking Below the Waist, Crackback Blocking, Chop Blocking, Cut Blocking or Peel Back Blocking the player shall be penalized only for the Unnecessary Roughness penalty.

No player of either team may thrust his hands forward above the frame to contact the opponent on the neck, face, head or facemask. This does not apply to a ball carrier using a "stiff arm" or "straight arm" tactic where there is no grasping of the face mask.



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Content compiled and entered by Jeff Harbin and Andre Proulx

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 Darren Hackwood, Senior Director of Officiating at Any inquiries regarding CFL Statistical Scoring Rules may be directed to Steve Daniel, Senior Director of Game Information and Statistics at