SECTION 3 — INTERFERENCE
Article 1 — General Definition
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.
Article 2 — By Team A
- 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:
- a play during which a forward pass is thrown across the line of scrimmage or,
- a play during which the ball is kicked across the line of scrimmage.
- For interference on a forward pass play, see Rule 6, Section 4, Article 8.
- On a kicking play, a Team A player may interfere with an opponent up to one yard in advance of the line of scrimmage.
- 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.
- Hands may not be thrust forward above the frame to contact the opponent on the neck, face or head.
Article 3 — By Team B
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.
- For interference on a forward pass play, see Rule 6, Section 4, Article 8(b).
- For interference on a kicking play, see Rule 5, Section 4, Article 4.
Article 4 — Illegal Block-Hands To The Face
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.