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Officiating Dept. VideoOfficiating video: Out-of-bounds kickoff spots, Double/After enforcement, and reviewing nullified TDs

Officiating video: Out-of-bounds kickoff spots, Double/After enforcement, and reviewing nullified TDs

In the weekly officiating tape to the media, senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron addressed three plays from the past week (see below).

  • Kickoff out of bounds with another foul. In the Lions-Giants Monday night game, an unsportsmanlike conduct foul was committed on a touchdown, with the assessment going to the kickoff as usual. The kickoff from the 20-yard line went out of bounds. Usually, an out-of-bounds kickoff is given to the receiving team at their own 40. However, the rule is that possession is awarded 25 yards downfield from the spot of the kick, giving the Lions the ball at the Giants 45. (The exception is a kickoff that goes less than 25 yards is the receiver’s ball at the out-of-bounds spot.)
  • Double/after enforcement. When a foul is committed by both teams after a change of possession, the fouls offset at the spot where possession changed. Since this was a kickoff, the Rams get the ball at the 2, where it was caught. The holding foul on the Rams and the facemask on Washington occurred later in the run, but this is still returned to the spot of the change of possession. This is a Double/After enforcement: a double foul after a change of possession.
  • Challenging a nullified touchdown. The Patriots were flagged for an illegal shift on a play they scored a touchdown. The ball came loose in the end zone, but it was ruled on the field to come after the ball crossed the plane of the goal. By assessing the penalty, it is not a scoring play, and the Saints challenged whether the fumble occurred before the touchdown. (It’s not an automatic review because points weren’t put on the scoreboard.) 

Ben Austro
Ben Austro is the editor and founder of Football Zebras and the author of So You Think You Know Football?: The Armchair Ref's Guide to the Official Rules (on sale now)