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NFL Rules Question (1 Viewer)

Joe Bryant

Guide
Staff member
Hey Guys,

Throwing out an email I received today. Thought you guys might have fun with this one.

J

My brother and I are always debating rules, particularly weird situations. Here’s our latest.

Is it possible to have an intentional grounding penalty on a completed pass?

For reference, this from http://www.nfl.com/rulebook/intentionalgrounding

*****

Intentional Grounding of Forward Pass

Intentional grounding of a forward pass is a foul: loss of down and 10 yards from previous spot if passer is in the field of play or loss of down at the spot of the foul if it occurs more than 10 yards behind the line or safety if passer is in his own end zone when ball is released.

Intentional grounding will be called when a passer, facing an imminent loss of yardage due to pressure from the defense, throws a forward pass without a realistic chance of completion.

Intentional grounding will not be called when a passer, while out of the pocket and facing an imminent loss of yardage, throws a pass that lands at or beyond the line of scrimmage, even if no offensive player(s) have a realistic chance to catch the ball (including if the ball lands out of bounds over the sideline or end line).

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The scenario: QB drops back to pass, is still in the pocket, and is about to be sacked. He heaves it into the flat where there are no offensive players (hence, in the words of the rule, there is no “realistic chance of completion”) but there is a lumbering defensive lineman. Clearly, if the ball falls at the lineman’s feet, intentional grounding will be called. In this scenario, however, suppose the pass is near the lineman’s head and he swipes at the ball and bats it, say, ten or fifteen yards off course where it is caught by an offensive player for a completed pass. My question (whose answer I don’t know) is, would intentional grounding be called, even though the pass is completed.

Note that nowhere in the rule does it specifically state that the pass must be incomplete.
 
Oh dear god let some ref call this in the playoffs and cost a team the game just like that stupid Tuck Rule...LOL

 
I would have to say "NO", it can't be intentional grounding. In the scenario described, if the QB was planning on 'intentionally grounding' the ball, the ball would not be thrown anywhere near a lineman's head with the possibility of an interception. Unless of course the lineman had fallen down and the QB threw the ball towards the ground in that area, thus hitting that lineman in the head. Either way......if the pass was intended to be grounded, but was caught because of the deflection, it is still a reception since it was not grounded.

 
I would have to say "NO", it can't be intentional grounding. In the scenario described, if the QB was planning on 'intentionally grounding' the ball, the ball would not be thrown anywhere near a lineman's head with the possibility of an interception. Unless of course the lineman had fallen down and the QB threw the ball towards the ground in that area, thus hitting that lineman in the head. Either way......if the pass was intended to be grounded, but was caught because of the deflection, it is still a reception since it was not grounded.
:goodposting: The ball is not grounded. Had the ball hit the ground, then an argument can be made but in this case the ball is caught therefore no grounding IMO.
 
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I don't believe they call intentional grounding on a "tipped" ball. This would technically still be a tipped ball.

So once the ball was tipped regardless what happens to it, it wouldn't be intentional grounding.

 
Just so they can brush up on the forward pass. Seems if you understand the forward pass then Intentional Grounding of Forward Pass is easier to comprehend.

Forward Pass 1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage. Exception: T-formation quarterback becomes eligible if pass is previously touched by an eligible receiver. 2. An offensive team may make only one forward pass during each play from scrimmage (Loss of 5 yards). 3. The passer must be behind his line of scrimmage (Loss of down and five yards, enforced from the spot of pass). 4. Any eligible offensive player may catch a forward pass. If a pass is touched by one eligible offensive player and touched or caught by a second offensive player, pass completion is legal. Further, all offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive player. 5. The rules concerning a forward pass and ineligible receivers: (a) If ball is touched accidentally by an ineligible receiver on or behind his line: loss of five yards. (b) If ineligible receiver is illegally downfield: loss of five yards. © If touched or caught (intentionally or accidentally) by ineligible receiver beyond the line: loss of 5 yards. 6. The player who first controls and continues to maintain control of a pass will be awarded the ball even though his opponent later establishes joint control of the ball. 7. Any forward pass becomes incomplete and ball is dead if: (a) Pass hits the ground or goes out of bounds. (b) Pass hits the goal post or the crossbar of either team. 8. A forward pass is complete when a receiver clearly possesses the pass and touches the ground with both feet inbounds while in possession of the ball. If a receiver would have landed inbounds with both feet but is carried or pushed out of bounds while maintaining possession of the ball, pass is complete at the out-of-bounds spot. 9. On a fourth down pass an incomplete pass results in a loss of down at the line of scrimmage. 10. If a personal foul is committed by the defense prior to the completion of a pass, the penalty is 15 yards from the spot where ball becomes dead. 11. If a personal foul is committed by the offense prior to the completion of a pass, the penalty is 15 yards from the previous line of scrimmage.
 
That's actually a good question.

Here are the rules.

Section 3 - Fouls on Passes and Enforcement

Article 1 - Intentional grounding will be called when a passer, facing an imminent loss of yardage because of pressure from the defense, throws a forward pass without a realistic chance of completion.

Note 1: Intentional grounding will not be called when a passer, while outside the tackle position and facing an imminent loss of yardage, throws a forward pass that lands near or beyond the line of scrimmage, even if no offensive player(s) have a realistic chance to catch the ball (including if the ball lands out of bounds over the sideline or endline).

Note 2: A passer, after delaying his passing action for strategic purposes, is prohibited from throwing the ball to the ground in front of him, even though he is under no pressure from defensive rusher(s).

Note 3: A player under center is permitted to stop the game clock legally to save time if immediately upon receiving the snap he begins a continuous throwing motion and throws the ball directly forward into the ground.

Note 4: Intentional grounding should not be called if the passer initiates his passing motion toward an eligible receiver and then is significantly affected by physical contact from a defensive player causing the pass to fall incomplete.

Note 5: When the ball, either in possession or loose, leaves the area bordered by the tackles, this area no longer exists. All intentional grounding rules apply as if the passer is outside this area (as stated in Note 1 above).

Note 6: A realistic chance of completion is defined as a pass that is thrown in the direction and the vicinity of an eligible receiver.
It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")So I think it comes down to what "thrown in the direction and the vicinity of" means.

If a pass is thrown to the left where there are no eligible receivers, but the wind takes it back to the right where there are, I'd say it's not grounding. I also think that a defensive player might be kind of like the wind in that situation. If the pass ends up traveling in the direction and vicinity of an eligible receiver -- even if it first needs to carom off of a defensive player -- then I'd say it can't be grounding (whether or not anybody actually catches it).

But an argument can be made either way.

 
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It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers.
What if, using the original hypo, the defender didn't just bounce the ball to an offensive player, but actually intercepted it? That would seem to be intentional grounding, but I can't remember it ever being called (and obviously declined) before.
 
I do not believe that it makes any difference if the ball hits the ground or not. I have seen intentional grounding called when a QB has thrown the ball out of bounds (so it never hit the field of play) and also on plays where the QB while in the pocket threw the ball out of the endzone.

As for the question of if the pass is completed after touching a defender, I also think that that does not matter. For example, if the defender tipped the ball I believe that makes all players on offense eligible to catch it. If it hit a defender and the left guard caught it, there still could not be an eligible receiver anywhere near the ball.

Like many penalties, I suspect that this would be a judgment call by the officials. I do not believe the positioning of the defense and their proximity to the ball has anything to do with whether the QB met the other rules for intentional grounding.

 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."

 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Intentional grounding mentions a "reasonable chance of completion." A pass to a defender without an eligible receiver in the area would not have much chance of completion.
 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.

 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.
'Forward Pass1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage.'

It says right there that defensive players are eligible receivers.

 
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That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.
'Forward Pass1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage.'

It says right there that defensive players are eligible receivers.
Still doesn't change that hitting a defender right between the numbers for an interception is not having a reasonable chance for a completion.
 
David Yudkin said:
identikit said:
Maurile Tremblay said:
heckmanm said:
Maurile Tremblay said:
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.
'Forward Pass1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage.'

It says right there that defensive players are eligible receivers.
Still doesn't change that hitting a defender right between the numbers for an interception is not having a reasonable chance for a completion.
True. I was just responding to the statement that "defensive players are not considered eligible receivers". Clearly they are, but the (no) "reasonable chance for a completion" clause for intentional grounding would seem to override the fact that the defender is eligible.
 
I think that you can have intentional grounding called on a play like this.

Let's tweak the scenario ever so slightly and say that the offensive player who caught the ball was an offensive lineman or some other offensive player who was ineligible to catch the ball until it was tipped first by the defense. Maybe that makes it a little more obvious to the people who think it is not intentional grounding since the pass doesn't have to be deflected 10-15 yds to an eligible receiver. There could still be no eligible receivers within 20 yards of the play, but it otherwise (without a potential intentional grounding penalty) is a legal completed pass to an offensive lineman since it was deflected by the defense first.

 
I believe this is totally a judgement call and could still be called in this situation.....the judgement is about the QB's intent combined with the judgement about if a member of his team could have a chance at catching the pass.....it doesn't matter if a defender is in the area or not....

if both

1. his intent was to avoid the sack

2. no offensive player in the area

then you have intentional grounding

if one of those is not present then no intentional grounding

you could have the judgement that his intent was just to get rid of it and avoid the sack, but then there happens to be a WR in the vicinity that bails him out, even though his intent was to just get rid of it......the white hat has sole resonsibility of determing #1 while he may get help from other officials about #2........because the white hat very rarely watches hat happens to a thrown pass.....they stay with the QB to see if he gets roughed, etc.......

 
Once the ball is tipped, everyone becomes an eligible receiver. Therefore, no intentional grounding. Much like pass interference is a penalty and a spot foul, except when the ball is tipped.

 
For those using the defense is eligible logic, it doesn't work because then a QB wouldn't get called for it if he simply threw it at a defenders foot.

But doesn't the pass have to, by definition, have a realistic chance of completion since it REALLY did get caught.

Once the ball is touched by the defender, everyone becomes eligible. The rule doesn't state at what point there has to be a realistic chance of completion, just that there is a realistic chance. And since it did in fact get completed to an eligible receiver, you'd have to say there was a realistic chance of it happening because it did happen.

 
For those using the defense is eligible logic, it doesn't work because then a QB wouldn't get called for it if he simply threw it at a defenders foot. But doesn't the pass have to, by definition, have a realistic chance of completion since it REALLY did get caught. Once the ball is touched by the defender, everyone becomes eligible. The rule doesn't state at what point there has to be a realistic chance of completion, just that there is a realistic chance. And since it did in fact get completed to an eligible receiver, you'd have to say there was a realistic chance of it happening because it did happen.
If the eligible receiver is an offensive lineman who is only eligible b/c it got tipped, then I would have to use a common sense interpretation of the rules and say that in the official's best judgment the penalty will be called since there were no eligible receivers anywhere near the ball the instant it was released from the QB's hand to avoid the sack. I don't think becoming eligible after the ball is tipped is relevant.
 
For those using the defense is eligible logic, it doesn't work because then a QB wouldn't get called for it if he simply threw it at a defenders foot. But doesn't the pass have to, by definition, have a realistic chance of completion since it REALLY did get caught. Once the ball is touched by the defender, everyone becomes eligible. The rule doesn't state at what point there has to be a realistic chance of completion, just that there is a realistic chance. And since it did in fact get completed to an eligible receiver, you'd have to say there was a realistic chance of it happening because it did happen.
If the eligible receiver is an offensive lineman who is only eligible b/c it got tipped, then I would have to use a common sense interpretation of the rules and say that in the official's best judgment the penalty will be called since there were no eligible receivers anywhere near the ball the instant it was released from the QB's hand to avoid the sack. I don't think becoming eligible after the ball is tipped is relevant.
But the rule doesn't say the receiver has to be eligible at the time the ball is released. It just says it needs to have a realistic chance of completion and since the pass was completed the chance has to be realistic.
 
But the rule doesn't say the receiver has to be eligible at the time the ball is released. It just says it needs to have a realistic chance of completion and since the pass was completed the chance has to be realistic.
Wait a second. Weren't you just saying in a prior post that a QB couldn't throw at a defender's foot to avoid an intentional grounding call? What if that exact pass bounced up and was caught by an offensive lineman. Do you think the ref who threw his flag the instant the ball was thrown would then pick it up after the play saying that is a legal play since in his best judgment the QB tried to throw it off the defender to make his offensive lineman eligible (since he had no other eligible receivers in the area) in his hurried attempt to avoid an impending sack?
 
For those using the defense is eligible logic, it doesn't work because then a QB wouldn't get called for it if he simply threw it at a defenders foot. But doesn't the pass have to, by definition, have a realistic chance of completion since it REALLY did get caught. Once the ball is touched by the defender, everyone becomes eligible. The rule doesn't state at what point there has to be a realistic chance of completion, just that there is a realistic chance. And since it did in fact get completed to an eligible receiver, you'd have to say there was a realistic chance of it happening because it did happen.
If the eligible receiver is an offensive lineman who is only eligible b/c it got tipped, then I would have to use a common sense interpretation of the rules and say that in the official's best judgment the penalty will be called since there were no eligible receivers anywhere near the ball the instant it was released from the QB's hand to avoid the sack. I don't think becoming eligible after the ball is tipped is relevant.
The play isn't over until the ball hits the ground, the receiver/defender is down by contact, or a score has been made. The ultimate result of the play is a completed pass, therefore, no penalty.
 
I would have to say "NO", it can't be intentional grounding. In the scenario described, if the QB was planning on 'intentionally grounding' the ball, the ball would not be thrown anywhere near a lineman's head with the possibility of an interception. Unless of course the lineman had fallen down and the QB threw the ball towards the ground in that area, thus hitting that lineman in the head. Either way......if the pass was intended to be grounded, but was caught because of the deflection, it is still a reception since it was not grounded.
I'm the guy who e-mailed Joe with the original question. I'm not sure this is to the point. The rule is silent on the position of defenders. The requirement is simply that it is a "pass without a realistic chance of completion". Note also that the rule is silent on whether the pass is completed or on requiring the ball to actually touch the ground. So, to the point of your last sentence: "if the pass was intended to be grounded..." .Full Stop. This, in and of itself, is sufficient (or so it seems to me) for Intentional Grounding to be called because the sole criterion "without a realistic chance of completion" has been met.
 
That rule is so stupid anyway it's almost unbelievable. What the hell difference should it make if you are inside the tackles or not? Throwing a pass away in order to not sustain a loss should be intentional grounding no matter where you are. The defense makes a great play and gets squat out of it just because of where the QB is standing? And to make an exception when it's to kill the clock is ludicrous. That's what timeouts are for. If you use them up, tough ####. Half the rules in football are a crock of ####, and the one's like this one are just absolutely contradictory. No wonder players can't comply. The NFL has turned into 'The Ed Hochuli Show' (insert your favorite crew) with a little football thrown in in case you get bored. Too many rules and exceptions.

Rant over....sorry! :goodposting:

 
That rule is so stupid anyway it's almost unbelievable. What the hell difference should it make if you are inside the tackles or not? Throwing a pass away in order to not sustain a loss should be intentional grounding no matter where you are. The defense makes a great play and gets squat out of it just because of where the QB is standing? And to make an exception when it's to kill the clock is ludicrous. That's what timeouts are for. If you use them up, tough ####. Half the rules in football are a crock of ####, and the one's like this one are just absolutely contradictory. No wonder players can't comply. The NFL has turned into 'The Ed Hochuli Show' (insert your favorite crew) with a little football thrown in in case you get bored. Too many rules and exceptions.Rant over....sorry! :bowtie:
I agree with what you said, except for the killing the clock part which I view as just part of the strategy of the game.As far as inside/outside the tackles goes, the only reason they added that part was to further protect the health of QBs by giving them an out without penalty (the only catch is that the ball has to at least make it to the line of scrimmage). The rules favor more offense in general, much to the dismay of a defensive player trying to make a quality play.
 
Once the ball is tipped, everyone becomes an eligible receiver. Therefore, no intentional grounding. Much like pass interference is a penalty and a spot foul, except when the ball is tipped.
Not buying this. In your scenario, a QB could just throw the ball at a blitzing defender and have it bounce to an offensive lineman and therefore by your definition it's not intentional grounding.I think people are making this way too complicated than it needs to be. The rule outlines the conditions for intentional grounding and at no point does it say anything about the defense. So IMO the defense has nothing to do with the intent of the rule.
 
Once the ball is tipped, everyone becomes an eligible receiver. Therefore, no intentional grounding. Much like pass interference is a penalty and a spot foul, except when the ball is tipped.
Not buying this. In your scenario, a QB could just throw the ball at a blitzing defender and have it bounce to an offensive lineman and therefore by your definition it's not intentional grounding.I think people are making this way too complicated than it needs to be. The rule outlines the conditions for intentional grounding and at no point does it say anything about the defense. So IMO the defense has nothing to do with the intent of the rule.
Right. I don't believe it would be intentional grounding if either the defensive player, or the offensive player caught the ball before it hit the ground.
 
My question (whose answer I don't know) is, would intentional grounding be called, even though the pass is completed.
Would it be called? No. Not everThose rules can drive ya crazy. Part of the definition of a sack is that it be a tackle. Part of the definition of a tackle is that the play ends. Yet, when a defensive player forces a QB to fumble, it is often (always?) called a sack, despite that the quarterback is not tackled and the play continues. Over the years, I have learned to make peace with this. It has helped me to better focus on quibbles over pronunciation. I'm the life of the party.

 
But the rule doesn't say the receiver has to be eligible at the time the ball is released. It just says it needs to have a realistic chance of completion and since the pass was completed the chance has to be realistic.
Wait a second. Weren't you just saying in a prior post that a QB couldn't throw at a defender's foot to avoid an intentional grounding call? Yes

What if that exact pass bounced up and was caught by an offensive lineman. Do you think the ref who threw his flag the instant the ball was thrown would then pick it up after the play saying that is a legal play since in his best judgment the QB tried to throw it off the defender to make his offensive lineman eligible (since he had no other eligible receivers in the area) in his hurried attempt to avoid an impending sack?



1. If the Oline catches the ball then yes it should be picked up IMO. This is the same situation we're discussing. I don't think his reasoning will be that. You can't call intentional grounding if there is a realistic chance of the completion occuring to an eligible receiver. Since the pass was completed to an eligible receiver there by definition, has to be a realistic chance because it occurred. I don't think the ref is going to say the QB intended to do it, but in the end it's a legal play.

2. If the ball isn't caught, then no the flag shouldn't be picked up because there wasn't realistic chance of completing the pass.
 
Once the ball is tipped, everyone becomes an eligible receiver. Therefore, no intentional grounding. Much like pass interference is a penalty and a spot foul, except when the ball is tipped.
Not buying this. In your scenario, a QB could just throw the ball at a blitzing defender and have it bounce to an offensive lineman and therefore by your definition it's not intentional grounding.I think people are making this way too complicated than it needs to be. The rule outlines the conditions for intentional grounding and at no point does it say anything about the defense. So IMO the defense has nothing to do with the intent of the rule.
Right. I don't believe it would be intentional grounding if either the defensive player, or the offensive player caught the ball before it hit the ground.
Still not buying it. The intent of the rule is clear, and does not even mention the defense. If the QB is throwing the ball away to avoid a sack (and the other provisions are met) it's intentional grounding. If the defense intecepts the ball, they always could decline the intentional grounding call.
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.

 
David Yudkin said:
PatsFanCT said:
Once the ball is tipped, everyone becomes an eligible receiver. Therefore, no intentional grounding. Much like pass interference is a penalty and a spot foul, except when the ball is tipped.
Not buying this. In your scenario, a QB could just throw the ball at a blitzing defender and have it bounce to an offensive lineman and therefore by your definition it's not intentional grounding.I think people are making this way too complicated than it needs to be. The rule outlines the conditions for intentional grounding and at no point does it say anything about the defense. So IMO the defense has nothing to do with the intent of the rule.
Right. I don't believe it would be intentional grounding if either the defensive player, or the offensive player caught the ball before it hit the ground.
Still not buying it. The intent of the rule is clear, and does not even mention the defense. If the QB is throwing the ball away to avoid a sack (and the other provisions are met) it's intentional grounding. If the defense intecepts the ball, they always could decline the intentional grounding call.
You don't have to buy it, but that doesn't mean it's not on the menu. I, for one have never seen an intentional grounding penalty called, or declined, on a ball that wasn't grounded. The rule is in place for good reason, but when a defender interferes with the ball, that changes the rule completely, IMHO.
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
No. If the ball is not incomplete you will never see an intentional grounding call.
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
But the word "grounding" is in the rule. The ball needs to be grounded before the penalty an be enforced. If the defender tips the ball, the rule change, and everyone becomes an eligible receiver. If the defender tips the ball and an offensive lineman is right there to catch it, then there is a reasonable expectation that the ball could be caught by an eligible receiver, as the lineman is now an eligible receiver. The penalty doesn't get enforced until after the play is completed. At that point, there is no intentional grounding.
 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.
'Forward Pass1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage.'

It says right there that defensive players are eligible receivers.
No it doesn't.There are two parts to being an eligible receiver: (a) being eligible, and (b) being a receiver.

I don't think the rules ever refer to defensive players as receivers.

(Also, I don't think you're quoting from the actual rules.)

 
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You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
But the word "grounding" is in the rule. The ball needs to be grounded before the penalty an be enforced. If the defender tips the ball, the rule change, and everyone becomes an eligible receiver. If the defender tips the ball and an offensive lineman is right there to catch it, then there is a reasonable expectation that the ball could be caught by an eligible receiver, as the lineman is now an eligible receiver. The penalty doesn't get enforced until after the play is completed. At that point, there is no intentional grounding.
Then to avoid intentional grounding why don't all QBs nail a defender with the ball? Then there would never be intentional grounding called because the ball hit someone "eligible."
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
But the word "grounding" is in the rule. The ball needs to be grounded before the penalty an be enforced. If the defender tips the ball, the rule change, and everyone becomes an eligible receiver. If the defender tips the ball and an offensive lineman is right there to catch it, then there is a reasonable expectation that the ball could be caught by an eligible receiver, as the lineman is now an eligible receiver. The penalty doesn't get enforced until after the play is completed. At that point, there is no intentional grounding.
Then to avoid intentional grounding why don't all QBs nail a defender with the ball? Then there would never be intentional grounding called because the ball hit someone "eligible."
I think they do not intentionally throw to the front of a defender since there is a decent chance that defender will intercept the ball. If they throw it at their back, or their feet it will be called intentional grounding.ETA: Provided the play results in an incomplete pass.
 
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You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
But the word "grounding" is in the rule. The ball needs to be grounded before the penalty an be enforced. If the defender tips the ball, the rule change, and everyone becomes an eligible receiver. If the defender tips the ball and an offensive lineman is right there to catch it, then there is a reasonable expectation that the ball could be caught by an eligible receiver, as the lineman is now an eligible receiver. The penalty doesn't get enforced until after the play is completed. At that point, there is no intentional grounding.
Then to avoid intentional grounding why don't all QBs nail a defender with the ball? Then there would never be intentional grounding called because the ball hit someone "eligible."
The ball would have to be caught by someone. if he just nails the defender and nobody catches it, then it would be intentional grounding. I don't think QB's or coaches think nailing a defender with the ball in hopes that one of their own teammates can catch it would be a wise decision.
 
You will never see an intentional grounding call on any ball that is caught. It does not matter what the intent is - if the ball is caught there will not be a flag. The ball must be incomplete for there to be intentional grounding.
It depends who caught it and how.For example, if the defense catches the pass for an interception, it could still be called intentional grounding and the penalty would be declined.If the QB throws the ball straight ahead into the OL just to dump it and it glances off a defender and an OLman catches it, sure it's caught but it won't stand if it's clearly the QB dumping the ball.I still think that if the ball is dumped into the flat behind the line of scrimmage and for some unknown reason bats the ball 20 yards downfield and it's caught, if the rest of the stipulations of the rule are applicable I believe it would still be called intentional grounding.IMO, that's why the rule does not specify anything at all to do with the defense, as it is the actions of the QB that matter here.
But the word "grounding" is in the rule. The ball needs to be grounded before the penalty an be enforced. If the defender tips the ball, the rule change, and everyone becomes an eligible receiver. If the defender tips the ball and an offensive lineman is right there to catch it, then there is a reasonable expectation that the ball could be caught by an eligible receiver, as the lineman is now an eligible receiver. The penalty doesn't get enforced until after the play is completed. At that point, there is no intentional grounding.
Then to avoid intentional grounding why don't all QBs nail a defender with the ball? Then there would never be intentional grounding called because the ball hit someone "eligible."
The ball would have to be caught by someone. if he just nails the defender and nobody catches it, then it would be intentional grounding. I don't think QB's or coaches think nailing a defender with the ball in hopes that one of their own teammates can catch it would be a wise decision.
But using the argument of some in this thread, hitting a defender would make OL players eligible receivers and therefore it would make for a "reasonable" chance that the pass could be completed.
 
Let's read the rule again:

'Intentional grounding will be called when a passer, facing an imminent loss of yardage due to pressure from the defense, throws a forward pass without a realistic chance of completion.'

Never it is mentioned that the ball has to be grounded or that it has to be incomplete for this to constitute an intentional grounding... everybody thinks that way because we always see a QB throwing it at the ground when it happens... but it's not part of the rule;

Also, the defense has nothing to do in this... except for that it has to apply pressure on the passer;

Finally, a 'realistic' chance of completion has nothing to do with a completion... A QB might throw the ball as far as he could into the stands, lightning might strike it and it gets caught by an eligible offensive player... an it still did not have a 'realistic' chance of completion when launched;

---

So:

A QB has a defensive player applying pressure... he throws the ball at this defender's feet: no realistic chance of completion - (it's not: no realistic chance of interception in the rule)... it is, by rule, an intentional grounding - the ref has to throw the flag... the ball hits the defender's foot and bounces forward 15 yards (I know, extreme) and is caught by a WR standing there... it is 'intentional grounding'

I know, extreme example - where the ref would probably not throw the flag as he's probably watching what the defender would do to the QB... but, in my humble opinion and by rule, it should be intentional grounding

 
But using the argument of some in this thread, hitting a defender would make OL players eligible receivers and therefore it would make for a "reasonable" chance that the pass could be completed.
No the "reasonable" chance when involving the Olinemen only occurs if a) they actually catch it, or b) have a shot at catching it (meaning the ball pops up into the air and they can make an attempt at it). IMO if a QB throws the ball at a defenders shin and it falls incomplete next to a now eligible Olineman, that is still intentional grounding, there is no "realistic" chance of completion.
 
That's actually a good question.

It is clear from other rules that defensive players are not considered eligible receivers. (E.g., "All offensive players become eligible once a pass is touched by an eligible receiver or any defensive players.")
XRule 8, Section 1, Article 2(a): "Defensive players are eligible at all times."
Do the rules ever refer to defensive players as "receivers"?I don't think so. In a number of places, though, they refer to defensive players and eligible receivers disjunctively. If defensive players were eligible receivers, the phrase "defensive players or eligible receivers" would be redundant.
'Forward Pass1. A forward pass may be touched or caught by any eligible receiver. All members of the defensive team are eligible. Eligible receivers on the offensive team are players on either end of line (other than center, guard, or tackle) or players at least one yard behind the line at the snap. A T-formation quarterback is not eligible to receive a forward pass during a play from scrimmage.'

It says right there that defensive players are eligible receivers.
No it doesn't.There are two parts to being an eligible receiver: (a) being eligible, and (b) being a receiver.

I don't think the rules ever refer to defensive players as receivers.

(Also, I don't think you're quoting from the actual rules.)
In this case we are talking about two different infractions. The description above is intended to outline who is eligible to catch a forward pass without being flagged as ineligible.

For the purpose of intentional grounding a defensive player would not be considered an eligible receiver. If a QB throws directly to a defender and there are no eligible offensive players nearby and the pass goes incomplete, the QB will most likely be flagged for Intentional Grounding.

 
Let's read the rule again:

'Intentional grounding will be called when a passer, facing an imminent loss of yardage due to pressure from the defense, throws a forward pass without a realistic chance of completion.'

Never it is mentioned that the ball has to be grounded or that it has to be incomplete for this to constitute an intentional grounding... everybody thinks that way because we always see a QB throwing it at the ground when it happens... but it's not part of the rule;

Also, the defense has nothing to do in this... except for that it has to apply pressure on the passer;

Finally, a 'realistic' chance of completion has nothing to do with a completion... A QB might throw the ball as far as he could into the stands, lightning might strike it and it gets caught by an eligible offensive player... an it still did not have a 'realistic' chance of completion when launched;

---

So:

A QB has a defensive player applying pressure... he throws the ball at this defender's feet: no realistic chance of completion - (it's not: no realistic chance of interception in the rule)... it is, by rule, an intentional grounding - the ref has to throw the flag... the ball hits the defender's foot and bounces forward 15 yards (I know, extreme) and is caught by a WR standing there... it is 'intentional grounding'

I know, extreme example - where the ref would probably not throw the flag as he's probably watching what the defender would do to the QB... but, in my humble opinion and by rule, it should be intentional grounding
The bolded is the problem here. Nowhere in the rule does it say at what point there needs to be a realistic chance of completion. And since the completion does occur its has to have a realistic chance of completion because it did occur.
 
Let's read the rule again:

'Intentional grounding will be called when a passer, facing an imminent loss of yardage due to pressure from the defense, throws a forward pass without a realistic chance of completion.'

Never it is mentioned that the ball has to be grounded or that it has to be incomplete for this to constitute an intentional grounding... everybody thinks that way because we always see a QB throwing it at the ground when it happens... but it's not part of the rule;

Also, the defense has nothing to do in this... except for that it has to apply pressure on the passer;

Finally, a 'realistic' chance of completion has nothing to do with a completion... A QB might throw the ball as far as he could into the stands, lightning might strike it and it gets caught by an eligible offensive player... an it still did not have a 'realistic' chance of completion when launched;

---

So:

A QB has a defensive player applying pressure... he throws the ball at this defender's feet: no realistic chance of completion - (it's not: no realistic chance of interception in the rule)... it is, by rule, an intentional grounding - the ref has to throw the flag... the ball hits the defender's foot and bounces forward 15 yards (I know, extreme) and is caught by a WR standing there... it is 'intentional grounding'

I know, extreme example - where the ref would probably not throw the flag as he's probably watching what the defender would do to the QB... but, in my humble opinion and by rule, it should be intentional grounding
Actually is does say it has to be grounded - right where it says "Intentional grounding". It's like Yogi Berra said, if there's no grounding there's no grounding.
 
.

Joe, this is a sadistic side of you that we've seldom seen! :pics:

This is the Fantasy Football equivalent of throwing a Uzi-shaped pork chop into a Mosque and running like hell!!!

:mellow:

 

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