SECTION 8 — PUNTS AND FIELD GOAL ATTEMPTS
This section is subdivided into kicks that either a) cross the line of scrimmage or, b) are prevented from doing so.
- For those kicks that cross line of scrimmage (LOS):
- Punts are measured from the LOS to the point where the ball is first touched by a player, goes out of bounds or is otherwise declared dead. For example, Player A1 attempts to catch a punt at his own 25-yard line but muffs the ball and does not gain full possession. The ball bounces back up the field in the direction of the punter to the 35-yard line. The distance of the punt and the start of the punt return will be recorded as the initial touch point i.e. the 25-yard line. If the ball rolls downfield further, the original touch point will still be the determinant statistically.
- In those cases where the ball touches a potential kick returner and is deemed to be inadvertent and the ball continues downfield, the point of recovery shall be the yard line to which the kick is measured and the return commenced.
- If the ball is punted over the Goal Line, the distance into the Goal Area will be included in the length of the punt.
- If the receiver should kick the ball back to the opponents, this will count as a punt and will be measured from the point of kick. This does not apply to dribbled balls which are dealt with in Section 11 on fumbles and Section 16.
- If the punter should recover his own kick, or another onside player of that team should do so, the kick will count as a punt and the yardage measured to the point of recovery. Yards gained after the recovery will be recorded separately as an Own Team Punt Recovery with yardage scored as an ‘Advance’.
- Yardage for all Field Goal attempts will be recorded in the play-by-play from the point of the kick to the Goal Line. The point of the kick is defined as the nearest yard line. Example: A kick from 35 yards and 27 inches as measured from the goal line will be recorded as a 36-yard field goal attempt, from 35 yards and 6 inches will be deemed a 35-yard attempt.
- A Missed Field Goal becomes the equivalent of a punt and is treated as above in 8 (a) (1). The yardage for Missed Field Goals will be recorded separately and calculated from the LOS to the point of recovery.
- Punts or Field Goal attempts that are partially blocked ("deflected") i.e. that cross the line of scrimmage, are still treated as a blocked kick charged against the kicking team and credited to the defence. For example, any such Punt or FG attempt that in the opinion of the statistician is sufficiently disrupted by the defending player and renders the field goal attempt unsuccessful, or limits the punt to no further than 10 yards downfield, that player will be credited with a blocked kick. Any player who deflects a convert kick attempt and it is unsuccessful will receive credit for a blocked kick no matter where the ball goes afterwards.
- Kicks that do NOT cross scrimmage line:
- If a kicker should attempt a punt and the ball fails to cross the line of scrimmage, a loose ball is created. This will not count as a punt and the eventual outcome of the play will determine the way it should be recorded. A fumble will be charged to the kicker, and the play may evolve into either a rushing or passing play, or a team loss if tackled behind the LOS. If the opposition recovers the ball, the kicker will be charged with a Fumble Lost.
- If a placekicker attempts a Field Goal or Convert Kick and it is touched by a defender in any way with the attempt rendered subsequently unsuccessful, the following statistical treatment will apply:
- The defender will be credited with a blocked kick, regardless of where the ball goes afterwards.
- The placekicker will be charged with a Missed Field Goal attempt AND a fumble if the ball is recovered behind the LOS, or a Missed Field Goal attempt only if the ball crosses the LOS. If recovered by the defending side, the kicker will be charged with a fumble lost and the yards lost from the line of scrimmage to the point of recovery will be charged as a Team Loss. If a blocked kick is recovered by the kicking team, the kicker will be charged with a fumble. The events after recovery will determine whether the play shall be recorded as a rushing play, passing play or Team Loss play.