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SUMMARY OF OUR 5v5 FLAG FOOTBALL RULES  

Overview  

• The game is 5 on 5, minimal-contact, non-blocking, non-screening, youth flag football. 
• First possession is determined with a coin toss.  
• All players are eligible receivers.  
• There is no kicking in this style of play.  
• Game officials will use preventative officiating when possible.  
• No foul or penalty flag stops a live play. However, pre-snap fouls will stop the action. 
• Players cannot make contact that is considered unnecessary or provokes roughness.  
• 3- and 4-point stances are not permitted.  
• Fields are 25 yards wide and a minimum of 50 yards long. Field dimension may be modified if  physical space requires it.  
• Officials will mark the ball where the ball was at the time it became dead; not at the hips/flag belt. 
• The ball will be spotted in the middle of the field after each play. 
• Fields have a “no run zone” five yards from the end zones.  
• When the ball is spotted in a “no run zone” the offense must execute a pass play that breaks the  line-of-scrimmage.  
• An “onside play” is available in the final two minutes of the game. 
• There is a mercy rule if the score differential is 27 points or more.  

Clock Operations

Scheduled

Block

Length of Game

Periods

Halftime

Time outs

“stop clock” or

“pro clock”

50 minutes

40 minutes

Two 20-minute halves

One

minute

One per half

Used in the last two minutes of game



6U games: Time rules are different to include no “stop clock” will be used in last two minutes 

Offense:

• Possessions will begin on the 5-yard line, unless moved by penalty. 
• The play clock is 25 seconds.  
• Snaps must be made between the center’s legs.  
• The player taking the snap cannot run the ball past scrimmage unless pursued by a defender.  
• An audible 7-second “sack clock” is administered by an official.  
• When a sack occurs it is treated an incomplete pass and the ball is returned to scrimmage 
• Teams will have four downs to gain a first down at mid-field.  
• Once across mid-field and awarded a new set of downs, teams will have four downs to score unless  awarded an automatic first down by penalty.  
• On fourth down coaches must decide if they want to “go for it” or “punt”. 
• If they “go for it” and fail to achieve the line-to-gain, the opposing team takes the ball from where  it became dead.  
• If they choose to “punt” a game official will move the ball to the opponent’s 5-yard line, change of  possession.  
• Ball carriers may legally use backward passes and legal pitches behind the line-of-scrimmage. 
• Fumbles and muffs (including snaps) are dead when they hit the ground.  
• Receivers must have one foot inbounds with possession to be a legal catch.  
• Ball carriers are allowed to slightly leave their feet, jump, and spin as evasive maneuvers to advance  the ball as long as they do not put another player’s safety at risk.  
• Jump cuts or advancing between two defenders is allowed if they do not initiate noteworthy contact  with the defender or put another player’s safety at risk.  
• Ball carriers may not dive, lunge, hurdle etc., to advance the ball.  
• Ball carriers may not physically deny defenders the opportunity to capture their flag.  
• After a play the offense is responsible to retrieve and return the ball to the nearest game official.  

Defense 

• Before a legal snap a rush line will be set 10 yards from the line-of-scrimmage.  
• Legal rushers must be a minimum of 10 yards from the line-of-scrimmage at the snap.  
• Defenders may enter the backfield once the ball is handed-off, passed forward or backward or the ball touches any other offensive player other than the player who took the original snap.  
• Interceptions during all live ball plays may be returned for points, including during Point-After Touchdown (PAT). Exception: During overtime intercepted balls are ruled as dead balls.  
• Defenders may safely dive to capture an opponent’s flag but must avoid excessive contact.  
• Stripping or attempting to strip the ball from a player in possession is illegal.  
• Whether or not a ball was tipped in the air has no bearing as it pertains to fouls (illegal contact, personal foul, roughing, etc.).  

Scoring  

Touchdown

6 points with the chance to go for a 1, 2, or 3 point after touchdown attempt (PAT)

Point After

Touchdown (PAT)

One point from the 5-yard line, pass play only

Two points from the 10-yard line, run or pass

Three points from mid-field, run or pass

Safety

2 points will be awarded to the defense and possession of the ball at the 5-yard line (going out)

Forfeits

Recorded as 27-0


Overtime 

When regulation time ends in a tie teams will conduct one-play overtime series until a winner is  determined. Teams will alternate on offense. 

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South Valley Flag Football League

ANN SOBRATO HIGH SCHOOL 
Morgan Hill, California 95037

Contact Us

South Valley Flag Football League

ANN SOBRATO HIGH SCHOOL 
Morgan Hill, California 95037

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