Flag football is a non-contact and fast-paced game in which the defensive team needs to remove the flag from its opponent ball carrier. It is a great sports game for the youth to acquire basic skills and enjoy some team-based activities. Joining flag football leagues also makes your chances of good college applications more optimistic. With potential scholarship offers, players get to work towards state tournaments and championships as well.
Instead of the standard 11-player teams, flag football players often play as 7-on-7 in which each team has 7 players. While playing for offense, the sport’s strategies differ slightly from the tackle football game. The main focus is to keep the ball carrier away from the opposing defenders. Once a defender removes the flag, the current football round ends.
7 on 7 Flag Football Players
An offensive team is the one that makes a score. Its 7 offense players include a center, a quarterback, and five receivers. A center snaps the ball to mark the game’s starting point. A quarterback receives this snap from the center, whereas the five receivers are eligible to catch a pass or receive a handoff. Among these five receivers, the wide receivers catch passes from the quarterback along the field to help the team move towards a score. Also, the running back receiver acts as the team’s primary ball carrier.
The Defense team
All defense players are rushers. They are responsible to rush the quarterback following the game’s standard distance rules. Defense players need to react to an offense by running and passing. Defensive roles have different variations such as free safety, strong safety, defensive back, linebacker, nose guard, defensive tackles, defensive ends, and cornerbacks. They all focus on coverage and timing to overcome the opponents from various angles on the field.
A 7 on 7 flag football game lasts for 20 minutes, with the team’s seven players beginning the game at a 40-yard line. No tackling is involved, and both teams need to adhere to proper apparel and gear requirements. These usually include skintight clothing with headgear.
A quarterback gets only 4 seconds to throw the ball to a receiver. Each player on both teams wears a flag or flag belt. The teams can carry, throw, or kick the ball to move it along the field and score a point. Once the center snaps the ball, the duration until a flag is pulled is known as a “down”. When a defender pulls the ball carrier’s flag, in the football jargon, the ball is dead.
Players take their positions around a line of scrimmage that cannot be trespassed until a new game begins.
7 on 7 flag football plays
Flag football rules generally differ across the participating leagues. However, there are some standard 7 on 7 flag football plays that are executed within the leagues’ guidelines. These plays are as follows.
In a Jet Sweep play, the running back takes a head start by running full speed before the snap. The team’s quarterback will synchronize the throw so it matches the running back’s timing, and the ball can be passed immediately.
This is a powerful quarterback play that uses a deceptive tactic through down blocking. The misdirection from a quarterback paves the way for successful down blocks. When defenders pursue a wrong turn, they scatter their leverage in the game by leaving easy room for the offense team to make a score.
A Post Corner is a deep double play. It forces the defense team to anticipate an inside run. However, a wide receiver diverts to the outside corner just at the last moment. This supports a deep throw for the offense team to score a point.
A flag football Rub play is one of the foolproof aspects of the game. It targets any of the team’s five receivers as they use quick slants and running routes. These techniques help to advance the football and turn the odds into offensive favor.
Shotgun Receiver Swirl
In a Shotgun Receiver Swirl, two wide receivers align themselves at the line of scrimmage. They cover the quarterback on each side. Following the snap, one wide receiver will run a quick hook, whereas the other will run a swirl route. All of this is executed in sync with the center and running back players.
The I Slant football play runs out in an I Formation. The receiver advances onto the line of scrimmage as a deceptive strategy. This makes the defense team wrongly anticipate a run play when it actually is a passing play. Such a distraction gives the offense team strong leverage in the game by using quick slants, drag routes, and swing routes.
Slants & Go
Slants & Go is another passing play that focuses on easy picks along routes taken by the receivers. One receiver fakes a slant before running a corner route. The center and running back then run their slants by crossing each other. A second receiver finally takes a go route that makes this play seem natural and effortless.
Play Action Run Option
This is a combo play that gives the quarterback two choices. Either the quarterback can throw a pass or run it. The team uses play-action to fool the defenders into thinking that it is a run. Following the snap, a quarterback fakes a handoff before rolling to the right side. This is where the decision-making steps in, and the quarterback may choose to throw or keep the football.
Professional Flag Football Organizations
The reputation of 7 on 7 flag football has skyrocketed over the years. Its rising popularity among high school students encourages youth and parents to invest their time in a productive sport. It also opens doors for exciting scholarship, academic, as well as career opportunities.
Seattle YMCA has a youth flag football program for kids and teenagers to enjoy the sport’s fundamentals and build strong sportsmanship. It covers sessions for pre-kindergarteners, kindergarteners, primary, and secondary school students. The programs are divided into Minis, Peewee, Junior Varsity, Varsity, and Skills Clinics.
NFL Flag promotes safety practices while teaching flag football plays and formations. Teams benefit from physical fitness, teamwork, sports disciplines, and communication skills that come with practicing regular drills. NFL 7 on 7 flag football plays increase player opportunities by allowing a greater skillset to come into action. The programs take participants across drills, playbooks, and preparatory support. A virtual workout series is designed to help trainees stay active at home while respecting social distancing protocols by keeping up with online sessions.
Such professional organizations establish ways to encourage parental participation as their kids’ biggest fans and also as volunteer coaches on the field. These practices make flag football a very community-driven activity, and you can sign up anytime to join this recreational euphoria.