Special teams football is a critical part of the game, and can often be the difference between winning and losing. There are many different types of special teams, each with their own specific roles. Here is a brief overview of some of the most common special teams:
The kickoff team is responsible for kicking the ball off to the other team at the start of each half, and after each score. They must be very accurate, as a poorly executed kickoff can give the opposing team great field position.
The punt team is responsible for punting the ball to the other team when the offense is unable to move the ball down the field. Punting is often seen as a last resort, as it usually means giving up possession of the ball. However, a well-executed punt can be very effective in pinning the other team deep in their own territory.
Field goal team
The field goal team is responsible for kicking field goals when the offense is within range. Field goals are often the difference between winning and losing a close game. The long snapper that initiates the play must have extreme precision to make it easy for the holder to adjust the ball perfectly for the kicker. Even though field goals looks mostly like a one man show it’s a very important team effort.
Extra point team
The extra point team is responsible for kicking the extra point after each touchdown. The extra point is worth one point, and is often the deciding factor in a close game.
The return team is responsible for returning punts and kickoffs. After catching the ball, the returner must make a decision on whether to run it back or fair catch it. If they choose to run it back, they must be very careful not to fumble the ball. If they decide to run they need the other part of this team the blockers to give them the time they need to run as long distance as possible.
Special teams play a vital role in the outcome of football games, and can often be the difference between winning and losing. Make sure you understand the roles of each special teams unit, and how they can impact the game.