1. The important factor in a safety is impetus. Two points are scored
for the opposing team when the ball is dead on or behind a team’s
own goal line if the impetus came from a player on that team.
Examples of Safety:
(a) Blocked punt goes out of kicking team’s end zone. Impetus
was provided by punting team. The block only changes direction of
ball, not impetus.
(b) Ball carrier retreats from field of play into his own end zone
and is downed. Ball carrier provides impetus.
(c) Offensive team commits a foul and spot of enforcement is behind
its own goal line.
(d) Player on receiving team muffs punt and, trying to get ball, forces
or illegally kicks (creating new impetus) it into end zone where it
goes out of the end zone or is recovered by a member of the receiving
team in the end zone.
Examples of Non-Safety:
(a) Player intercepts a pass with both feet inbounds in the field
of play and his momentum carries him into his own end zone. Ball is
put in play at spot of interception.
(b) Player intercepts a pass in his own end zone and is downed in
the end zone, even after recovering in the end zone. Impetus came
from passing team, not from defense. (Touchback)
(c) Player passes from behind his own goal line. Opponent bats down
ball in end zone. (Incomplete pass)
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