National Football League
The National Football League is a professional American football league consisting of 32 teams, divided between the National Football Conference and the American Football Conference. The NFL is one of the four major professional sports leagues in North America, the highest professional level of American football in the world; the NFL's 17-week regular season runs from early September to late December, with each team playing 16 games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the regular season, six teams from each conference advance to the playoffs, a single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, held in the first Sunday in February, is played between the champions of the NFC and AFC; the NFL was formed in 1920 as the American Professional Football Association before renaming itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. The NFL agreed to merge with the American Football League in 1966, the first Super Bowl was held at the end of that season. Today, the NFL has the highest average attendance of any professional sports league in the world and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is among the biggest club sporting events in the world and individual Super Bowl games account for many of the most watched television programs in American history, all occupying the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most watched U. S. television broadcasts by 2015. The NFL's executive officer is the commissioner; the players in the league belong to the National Football League Players Association. The team with the most NFL championships is the Green Bay Packers with thirteen; the current NFL champions are the New England Patriots, who defeated the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII for their sixth Super Bowl championship. On August 20, 1920, a meeting was held by representatives of the Akron Pros, Canton Bulldogs, Cleveland Indians, Dayton Triangles at the Jordan and Hupmobile auto showroom in Canton, Ohio; this meeting resulted in the formation of the American Professional Football Conference, a group who, according to the Canton Evening Repository, intended to "raise the standard of professional football in every way possible, to eliminate bidding for players between rival clubs and to secure cooperation in the formation of schedules".
Another meeting was held on September 17, 1920 with representatives from teams from four states-Akron, Canton and Dayton from Ohio. The league was renamed to the American Professional Football Association; the league elected Jim Thorpe as its first president, consisted of 14 teams. The Massillon Tigers from Massillon, Ohio was at the September 17 meeting, but did not field a team in 1920. Only two of these teams, the Decatur Staleys and the Chicago Cardinals, remain. Although the league did not maintain official standings for its 1920 inaugural season and teams played schedules that included non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the championship by virtue of their 8–0–3 record; the first event occurred on September 26, 1920 when the Rock Island Independents defeated the non-league St. Paul Ideals 48–0 at Douglas Park. On October 3, 1920, the first full week of league play occurred; the following season resulted in the Chicago Staleys controversially winning the title over the Buffalo All-Americans.
On June 24, 1922, the APFA changed its name to the National Football League. In 1932, the season ended with the Chicago Bears and the Portsmouth Spartans tied for first in the league standings. At the time, teams were ranked on a single table and the team with the highest winning percentage at the end of the season was declared the champion; this method had been used since the league's creation in 1920, but no situation had been encountered where two teams were tied for first. The league determined that a playoff game between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to decide the league's champion; the teams were scheduled to play the playoff game a regular season game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, but a combination of heavy snow and extreme cold forced the game to be moved indoors to Chicago Stadium, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with altered rules to accommodate the smaller playing field, the Bears won the game 9–0 and thus won the championship.
Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, beginning in 1933, to split into two divisions with a championship game to be played between the division champions. The 1934 season marked the first of 12 seasons in which African Americans were absent from the league; the de facto ban was rescinded in 1946, following public pressure and coinciding with the removal of a similar ban in Major League Baseball. The NFL was always the foremost pro
The tight end is a position in American football, arena football, Canadian football, on the offense. The tight end is seen as a hybrid position with the characteristics and roles of both an offensive lineman and a wide receiver. Like offensive linemen, they are lined up on the offensive line and are large enough to be effective blockers. On the other hand, unlike offensive linemen, they are eligible receivers adept enough to warrant a defense's attention when running pass patterns; because of the hybrid nature of the position, the tight end's role in any given offense depends on the tactical preferences and philosophy of the head coach. In some systems, the tight end will act as a sixth offensive lineman going out for passes. Other systems use the tight end as a receiver taking advantage of the tight end's size to create mismatches in the defensive secondary. Many coaches will have one tight end who specializes in blocking in running situations while using a tight end with better pass-catching skills in obvious passing situations.
Offensive formations may have as many as three tight ends at one time. The advent of the tight end position is tied to the decline of the one-platoon system during the 1940s and'50s. A rule limited substitutions. Players had to be adept at playing on both sides of the ball, with most offensive linemen doubling as defensive linemen or linebackers, receivers doubling as defensive backs. At that time, the receivers were known as either ends or flankers, with the end lining up wide at the line of scrimmage and the flanker positioned behind the line on the opposite side of the field; as the transition from starters going "both ways" to dedicated offensive and defensive squads took place, players who did not fit the mold of the traditional positions began to fill niches. Those who were good pass catchers and blockers but mediocre on defense were no longer liabilities. Many were too big to be receivers yet too small for offensive linemen. Innovative coaches such as Paul Brown of the Cleveland Browns saw the potential of having a larger receiver lined up inside, developing blocking techniques and passing schemes that used the unique attributes of the tight end position.
Greater use of the tight end as a receiver started in the 1960s with the emergence of stars Mike Ditka and John Mackey. Until most teams relied on the tight end's blocking as a sixth offensive lineman using them as receivers. In addition to superb blocking, Ditka offered great hands receiving and rugged running after a completion. Over a 12-year career, he caught 427 passes for over 43 touchdowns. Mackey brought speed, with six of his nine touchdown catches in one season being breakaways over 50 yards. Starting in 1980 the Air Coryell offense debuted tight end Kellen Winslow running wide receiver-type routes. Tight ends prior to Winslow were blockers lined up next to an offensive lineman and given short to medium drag routes. Winslow was put in motion to avoid being jammed at the line, lined up wide, or in the slot against a smaller cornerback. Former Chargers assistant coach Al Saunders said Winslow was "a wide receiver in an offensive lineman's body." Back defenses would cover Winslow with a strong safety or a linebacker, as zone defenses were not as popular.
Strong safeties in those times favored run defense over coverage speed. Providing another defender to help the strong safety opened up other holes. Winslow would line up unpredictably in any formation from a three point blocking stance to a two point receiver's stance, to being in motion like a flanker or offensive back. Head coach Jon Gruden referred to such multi-dimensional tight ends as "jokers", calling Winslow the first in the NFL. Head coach Bill Belichick notes that the pass-catching tight ends that get paid the most are "all direct descendants of Kellen Winslow", there are fewer tight ends now that can block on the line. In the 1990s, athletic Shannon Sharpe's prowess as a route-runner helped change the way tight ends were used by teams. Double-covered as a receiver, he became the first tight end in NFL history with over 10,000 career receiving yards. Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates pushed the position toward near wide receiver speed and power forward basketball skills. At 6' 6" Rob Gronkowski brought height, setting single-season tight end records in 2011 with 17 touchdowns—breaking Gates' and Vernon Davis' record of 13—and 1,327 receiving yards, surpassing Winslow's record of 1,290.
Jimmy Graham that season passed Winslow with 1,310 yards. Six of the NFL's 15 players with the most receptions that year were tight ends, the most in NFL history. Previous seasons had at most one or two ranked in the top. In the Arena Football League the tight end serves as the 3rd offensive lineman. Although they are eligible receivers they go out for passes and are only used for screen passes when they do. However, in Canadian football, tight ends are, in general, no longer used professionally in the CFL, but is still used at the college level in U Sports. Tony Gabriel is a former great tight end in Canadian football. There remain some tight ends in use at university level football, he was drafted by the CFL's Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2017, but instead signed with the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent that same year. Some plays are planned to take advantage of a tight end's
2003 NFL Draft
The 2003 NFL draft was the procedure by which National Football League teams selected amateur college football players. The draft is known as the "NFL Annual Player Selection Meeting" and has been conducted annually since 1936; the draft was held April 26–27, 2003 at the Theatre at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. The league held a supplemental draft after the regular draft and before the regular season; the draft was broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2 beginning at noon on Saturday, April 26 and beginning at 11:00 am on Sunday, April 27. The draft consisted of seven rounds, with teams selecting in the reverse order of the finish the previous season. There were 32 compensatory picks distributed among 15 teams, with five teams each receiving four additional selections. In addition, the Houston Texans, who started play as an expansion franchise the previous season, were granted a supplemental selection in the middle of each of the draft's final five rounds, plus the final selection in the final two rounds.
There was little drama when the draft began with the Cincinnati Bengals selecting Carson Palmer, as Palmer had agreed to contract terms with the Bengals the previous day. He became the first Heisman Trophy winner selected first overall in the draft since Vinny Testaverde in 1987; the event ended nearly 30 hours with Ryan Hoag being chosen by the Oakland Raiders with the final pick and thus gaining the distinction of "Mr. Irrelevant"; the draft took an odd turn with the Minnesota Vikings' pick in the first round. The Vikings were attempting to consummate a trade when their fifteen-minute time allowance elapsed; the Jaguars who selected next were quick to pounce, turning in their card to select QB Byron Leftwich after the Vikings' time elapsed. The Panthers took advantage of the gaffe, selecting OT Jordan Gross before the Vikings recovered and selected DT Kevin Williams; the mistake may have worked in the Vikings' favor as Williams went on to be a mainstay in their team, missing only four games in his first 10 seasons in the NFL and making six Pro Bowls.
The colleges with the most players selected in the draft were Florida and Tennessee which each had eight players chosen. Meanwhile, Penn State and Miami each had four players selected in the first round. Eleven defensive linemen were selected in round one, eclipsing the previous record of nine, set in 2001. Ten underclassmen were taken in the first round, including three of the first four overall selections; the first round lasted nearly five hours. The Buffalo Bills selection of Miami's Willis McGahee as the first running back off the board was notable because he was recovering from a career-threatening injury he suffered in the Fiesta Bowl which it was believed could have caused him to miss the upcoming season; the 262 players chosen in the draft were in the following positions: In the explanations below, denotes trades that took place during the draft, while indicates trades completed pre-draft. Round one Round two Round three Round four Round five Round six Round seven Notes For each player selected in the Supplemental Draft, the team forfeited its pick in that round in the draft of the following season.
General references"2003 NFL Draft". NFL. Archived from the original on November 17, 2006. Retrieved November 26, 2006. "ESPN.com: NFL Draft 2003". ESPN. Archived from the original on May 24, 2011. Retrieved April 14, 2011. "FFToday.com Draft Tracker". FFToday.com. Retrieved April 14, 2011. "2003 NFL Draft Pick Transactions". ProSportsTransactions.com. Archived from the original on May 21, 2011. Retrieved April 14, 2011. "2003 NFL Draft: Six Years Later". FootballOutsiders.com. Retrieved June 6, 2011. Trade references Specific references
College football is American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities. It was through college football play that American football rules first gained popularity in the United States. Unlike most other sports in North America, no minor league farm organizations exist in American or Canadian football. Therefore, college football is considered to be the second tier of American football in the United States and Canadian football in Canada. However, in some areas of the country, college football is more popular than professional football, for much of the early 20th century, college football was seen as more prestigious than professional football, it is in college football where a player's performance directly impacts his chances of playing professional football. The best collegiate players will declare for the professional draft after three to four years of collegiate competition, with the NFL holding its annual draft every spring in which 256 players are selected annually.
Those not selected can still attempt to land an NFL roster spot as an undrafted free agent. After the emergence of the professional National Football League, college football remained popular throughout the U. S. Although the college game has a much larger margin for talent than its pro counterpart, the sheer number of fans following major colleges provides a financial equalizer for the game, with Division I programs — the highest level — playing in huge stadiums, six of which have seating capacity exceeding 100,000 people. In many cases, college stadiums employ bench-style seating, as opposed to individual seats with backs and arm rests; this allows them to seat more fans in a given amount of space than the typical professional stadium, which tends to have more features and comforts for fans.. College athletes, unlike players in the NFL, are not permitted by the NCAA to be paid salaries. Colleges are only allowed to provide non-monetary compensation such as athletic scholarships that provide for tuition and books.
Modern North American football has its origins in various games, all known as "football", played at public schools in Great Britain in the mid-19th century. By the 1840s, students at Rugby School were playing a game in which players were able to pick up the ball and run with it, a sport known as Rugby football; the game was taken to Canada by British soldiers stationed there and was soon being played at Canadian colleges. The first documented gridiron football match was played at University College, a college of the University of Toronto, November 9, 1861. One of the participants in the game involving University of Toronto students was William Mulock Chancellor of the school. A football club was formed at the university soon afterward, although its rules of play at this stage are unclear. In 1864, at Trinity College a college of the University of Toronto, F. Barlow Cumberland and Frederick A. Bethune devised rules based on rugby football. Modern Canadian football is regarded as having originated with a game played in Montreal, in 1865, when British Army officers played local civilians.
The game gained a following, the Montreal Football Club was formed in 1868, the first recorded non-university football club in Canada. Early games appear to have had much in common with the traditional "mob football" played in Great Britain; the games remained unorganized until the 19th century, when intramural games of football began to be played on college campuses. Each school played its own variety of football. Princeton University students played a game called "ballown" as early as 1820. A Harvard tradition known as "Bloody Monday" began in 1827, which consisted of a mass ballgame between the freshman and sophomore classes. In 1860, both the town police and the college authorities agreed; the Harvard students responded by going into mourning for a mock figure called "Football Fightum", for whom they conducted funeral rites. The authorities held firm and it was a dozen years before football was once again played at Harvard. Dartmouth played its own version called "Old division football", the rules of which were first published in 1871, though the game dates to at least the 1830s.
All of these games, others, shared certain commonalities. They remained "mob" style games, with huge numbers of players attempting to advance the ball into a goal area by any means necessary. Rules were simple and injury were common; the violence of these mob-style games led to a decision to abandon them. Yale, under pressure from the city of New Haven, banned the play of all forms of football in 1860. American football historian Parke H. Davis described the period between 1869 and 1875 as the'Pioneer Period'. On November 6, 1869, Rutgers University faced Princeton University in the first-ever game of intercollegiate football, it was played with a round ball and, like all early games, used a set of rules suggested by Rutgers captain William J. Leggett, based
Campbell Soup Company
The Campbell Soup Company known as just Campbell's, is an American producer of canned soups and related products that are sold in 120 countries around the world. It is headquartered in New Jersey. Campbell's divides itself into three divisions: the "simple meals" division, which consists of soups that are either condensed or ready-to-serve; the company was started in 1869 by Joseph A. Campbell, a fruit merchant from Bridgeton, New Jersey, Abraham Anderson, an icebox manufacturer from South Jersey, they produced canned tomatoes, jellies, soups and minced meats. In 1876, Anderson left the partnership and the company became the "Joseph A. Campbell Preserve Company". Campbell reorganized into "Joseph Campbell & Co." in 1896. In 1897, John T. Dorrance, a nephew of the general manager Arthur Dorrance, began working for the company at a wage of $7.50 a week. Dorrance, a chemist with degrees from MIT and Göttingen University, developed a commercially viable method for condensing soup by halving the quantity of its heaviest ingredient: water.
He went on to become president of the company from 1914 to 1930 buying out the Campbell family. In 1898, Herberton Williams, a Campbell's executive, convinced the company to adopt a carnelian red and bright white color scheme, because he was taken by the crisp carnelian red color of the Cornell University football team's uniforms. To this day, the layout of the can, with its red and white design and the metallic bronze medal seal from the 1900 Paris Exhibition, has changed little, with the exception of the French phrase on the top of the bronze seal that said "Exposition-Universelle-Internationale", changed to the English name of the exhibition as "Paris International Exposition". Campbell Soup became one of the largest food companies in the world under the leadership of William Beverly Murphy, he was elected executive vice president of Campbell Soup in 1949 and was President and CEO from 1953 to 1972. While at Campbell's Soup Company, he took the corporation public and increased its brand portfolio to include Pepperidge Farm's breads and crackers, Franco-American's gravies and pastas, V8 vegetable juices, Swanson broths, Godiva's chocolates.
David Johnson was President and CEO from 1990 until 1997. Campbell Soup invested in advertising since its inception, many of its promotional campaigns have proven value in the Americana collectible advertising market. Best known are the "Campbell Kids" designed by illustrator Grace Drayton. Ronald Reagan was a spokesman for V8 when Campbell's acquired the brand in 1948. In addition to collectible advertising, the company has had notable commercial sponsorships. Among these was Orson Welles's The Campbell Playhouse, The Mercury Theatre on the Air. After the program's adaptation of The War of the Worlds became a sensation for accidentally starting a mass panic due to its realism, Campbell's took over as sponsor of the radio theater program in December 1938. In the UK and Ireland, Campbell Soup was rebranded as Batchelors Condensed Soup and Erin in March 2008, when the license to use the brand name expired. Premier Foods, St. Albans, Hertfordshire bought the Campbell Soup Company in the UK and Ireland, for £450m in 2006, but was licensed to use the brand only until 2008.
Under this agreement, the US-based Campbell Soup Company continued to produce Campbell's Condensed Soup but could not sell the product in the UK for a further five years. Campbell's continues to be a major part of Camden, New Jersey participating in charity events in the community. In 2009, Campbell's completed the building of a expanded headquarters in the city. In January 2010, Campbell's Canadian subsidiary began selling a line of soups that are certified by the Islamic Society of North America as being halal. Although Campbell does not have any plans to sell its halal soups in the United States, the move has drawn criticism from anti-Muslim critics in the United States. Blogger Pamela Geller called for a boycott of the company. In July 2011, Campbell's Soup decided to once again sell its product in the UK after being absent since 2008. Symingtons began manufacturing the brand under license; the new line-up comprised twelve cup soups, five simmer soups designed to be cooked in a pot of water, four savoury rice lines, four savory pasta and sauce packets.
The new range were not sold in cans, but instead in boxes. In 2011, the canned varieties returned to supermarket shelves with refreshed labels and new lines. In 2012, Campbell announced plans to buy Bolthouse Farms, a maker of juices, salad dressings and baby carrots, for $1.55 billion. Analysts saw this as an attempt to reach more affluent consumers. From 2012, Campbell Soup has been focused on updating their image and digital marketing to increase visibility among younger generations, they hired Umang Shah to lead global digital marketing. He led record social engagement campaigns including #DeclareRecess and #BIGFiveO. In June 2013, Campbell acquired the Danish multinational baked goods company Kelsen Group for an undisclosed amount. Kelsen has an 85-country distribution network and is seen as providing Campbell with opportunities for international expansion into China and other Asian markets. In June 2015, Campbell Soup acquired salsa maker Garden Fresh Gourmet for a sum of $231 million as it looked to expand into the fresh and organic packaged foods business.
In December 2017, Campbell's completed the acquisition of Pacific Foods of Oregon, LLC for $700 million and announced the agreement to
2003 NFL season
The 2003 NFL season was the 84th regular season of the National Football League. Regular-season play was held from September 4, 2003, to December 28, 2003. Due to damage caused by the Cedar Fire, Qualcomm Stadium was used as an emergency shelter, thus the Miami Dolphins–San Diego Chargers regular-season match on October 27 was instead played at Sun Devil Stadium, the home field of the Arizona Cardinals; the playoffs began on January 3, 2004. The NFL title was won by the New England Patriots when they defeated the Carolina Panthers, 32–29, in Super Bowl XXXVIII at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas, on February 1; this was the last season until the 2016 NFL season where neither of the previous Super Bowl participants made the playoffs. If an onside kick inside the final five minutes of the game does not go 10 yards, goes out of bounds, or is touched illegally, the receiving team will have the option of accepting the penalty and getting the ball immediately; the kicking team was penalized, but had another chance to kick again from five yards back.
League officials encouraged networks to cut to a commercial break if an instant replay challenge review was initiated. Networks were not permitted to utilize those game stoppages for their prescribed commercial periods. Dick Hantak and Bob McElwee retired in the 2003 off-season. Hantak joined the league as a back judge in 1978, was assigned Super Bowl XVII in that position, he was promoted to referee in 1986, working Super Bowl XXVII. McElwee joined the NFL in 1976 as a line judge, became a referee in 1980, he was the referee for three Super Bowls: XXII, XXVIII, XXXIV. Walt Anderson and Pete Morelli were promoted to referee to replace McElwee. Cincinnati Bengals – Marvin Lewis. Dallas Cowboys – Bill Parcells. Detroit Lions – Steve Mariucci. Jacksonville Jaguars – Jack Del Rio. San Francisco 49ers – Dennis Erickson. Philadelphia Eagles – New stadium: Lincoln Financial Field. New Orleans Saints – New AstroPlay home turf by mid-season Atlanta Falcons – New FieldTurf surface Green Bay Packers – New remodeled Lambeau Field Chicago Bears – New remodelled Soldier Field.
Buffalo Bills – New AstroPlay home turf Atlanta Falcons – New logo, new uniforms Detroit Lions – New uniforms, added black trim on logo and numbers Philadelphia Eagles – Added silver trim to numbers on uniforms. Introduce new home alternative uniforms. Black uniforms with white numbers with midnight green shadow in numbers. San Diego Chargers – White pants with road uniforms. New England Patriots – Added third alternative uniforms. Silver uniforms. Miami Dolphins – Added third alternate uniforms. Orange uniforms. Houston Texans – Added third alternate uniforms. Red Uniforms. Cleveland Browns – Added new alternate orange pants last worn in the Kardiac Kids era of coach Sam Rutigliano. Tennessee Titans – Added third alternate uniforms, powder blue Indianapolis finished ahead of Tennessee in the AFC South based on better head-to-head record. Denver clinched the AFC 6 seed instead of Miami based on better conference record. Buffalo finished ahead of N. Y. Jets in the AFC East based on better division record.
Jacksonville finished ahead of Houston in the AFC South based on better division record. Oakland finished ahead of San Diego in the AFC West based on better conference record. Philadelphia clinched the NFC 1 seed instead of St. Louis based on better conference record. Seattle clinched the NFC 5 seed instead of Dallas based on strength of victory. Within each conference, the four division winners and the two wild card teams qualified for the playoffs; the four division winners are seeded 1 through 4 based on their overall won-lost-tied record, the wild card teams are seeded 5 and 6. The NFL does not use a fixed bracket playoff system, there are no restrictions regarding teams from the same division matching up in any round. In the first round, dubbed the wild-card playoffs or wild-card weekend, the third-seeded division winner hosts the sixth seed wild card, the fourth seed hosts the fifth; the 1 and 2 seeds from each conference receive a bye in the first round. In the second round, the divisional playoffs, the number 1 seed hosts the worst surviving seed from the first round, while the number 2 seed will play the other team.
The two surviving teams from each conference's divisional playoff games meet in the respective AFC and NFC Conference Championship games, hosted by the higher seed. Although the Super Bowl, the fourth and final round of the playoffs, is played at a neutral site, the designated home team is based on an annual rotation by conference. * Indicates overtime victory ** Indicates double overtime victory The following teams and players set all-time NFL records during the season: The 2003 NFL Draft was held from April 26 to 27, 2003 at New York City's Theater at Madison Square Garden. With the first pick, the Cincinnati Bengals selected quarterback Carson Palmer from the University of Southern California. NFL Record and Fact Book NFL History 2001– Total Football: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League Football Outsiders 2003 Team Efficiency Ratings Pro Football Reference.com – 2003
A touchdown is a scoring play in both American and Canadian football. Whether running, returning a kickoff or punt, or recovering a turnover, a team scores a touchdown by advancing the ball into the opponent's end zone. To score a touchdown, one team must take the football into the opposite end zone. In all gridiron codes, the touchdown is scored the instant the ball touches or "breaks" the plane of the goal line while in possession of a player whose team is trying to score in that end zone; this particular requirement of the touchdown is the exact opposite of the prerequisite to score most sports in which points are scored by moving a ball or equivalent object into a goal where the whole of the relevant object must cross the whole of the goal line for a score to be awarded. The play is dead and the touchdown scores the moment the ball touches plane in possession of a player, or the moment the ball comes into possession of an offensive player in the end zone; the slightest part of the ball touching or being directly over the goal line is sufficient for a touchdown to score.
However, only the ball counts, not a player's foot, or any other part of the body. Touching one of the pylons at either end of the goal line with the ball constitutes "breaking the plane" as well. Touchdowns are scored by the offense by running or passing the ball; the former is called a rushing touchdown, in the latter, the quarterback throws a touchdown pass or passing touchdown to the receiver, who makes a touchdown reception. However, the defense can score a touchdown if they have recovered a fumble or made an interception and return it to the opposing end zone. Special teams can score a touchdown on a kickoff or punt return, or on a return after a missed or blocked field goal attempt or blocked punt. In short, any play in which a player carries the ball across the goal line scores a touchdown, the manner in which he gained possession is inconsequential. In the NFL, a touchdown may be awarded by the referee as a penalty for a "palpably unfair act," such as a player coming off the bench during a play and tackling the runner, who would otherwise have scored.
A touchdown is worth six points. The scoring team is awarded the opportunity for an extra point or a two-point conversion. Afterwards, the team that scored the touchdown kicks off to the opposing team, if there is any time left. Unlike a try scored in rugby, contrary to the event's name, the ball does not need to touch the ground when the player and the ball are inside the end zone; the term touchdown is a holdover from gridiron's early days when the ball was required to be touched to the ground as in rugby, as rugby and gridiron were still similar sports at this point. This rule was changed to the modern-day iteration in 1889; when the first uniform rules for American football were enacted by the newly formed Intercollegiate Football Association following the 1876 Rugby season, a touchdown counted for 1⁄4 of a kicked goal and allowed the offense the chance to kick for goal by placekick or dropkick from a spot along a line perpendicular to the goal line and passing through the point where the ball was touched down, or through a process known as a "punt-out", where the attacking team would kick the ball from the point where it was touched down to a teammate.
If the teammate could fair catch the ball, he could follow with a try for goal from the spot of the catch, or resume play as normal. The governing rule at the time read: "A match shall be decided by a majority of touchdowns. A goal shall be equal to four touchdowns. In 1881, the rules were modified so that a goal kicked from a touchdown took precedence over a goal kicked from the field in breaking ties. In 1882, four touchdowns were determined to take precedence over a goal kicked from the field. Two safeties were equivalent to a touchdown. In 1883, points were introduced to football, a touchdown counted as four points. A goal after a touchdown counted as four points. In 1889, the provision requiring the ball to be touched to the ground was removed. A touchdown was now scored by possessing the ball beyond the goal line. In 1897, the touchdown scored five points, the goal after touchdown added another point. In 1900, the definition of touchdown was changed to include situations where the ball becomes dead on or above the goal line.
In 1912, the value of a touchdown was increased to six points. The end zone was added. Before the addition of the end zone, forward passes caught beyond the goal line resulted in a loss of possession and a touchback; the increase from five points to six did not come until much in Canada, the touchdown remained only five points there until 1956. In addition, the score continued to be called a try in Canada until the second half of the twentieth century; the ability to score a touchdown on the point-after attempt was added to NCAA football in 1958, high school football in 1969, the CFL in 1975 and the NFL in 1994. The short-lived World Football League, a professional American football league that operated in 1974 and 1975, gave touchdowns a 7-point value. American football scoring Conversion Touchdown celebration Touchdown Jesus Touchdown pass Conversion