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  • Nov 27th 2012
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Best American football position of All Time

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    1
    Halfback

    Halfback

    • Players: Wade Betschart
    A halfback, sometimes referred to as a tailback, is an offensive position in American football, which lines up in the backfield and generally is responsible for carrying the ball on running plays. Historically, from the 1870s through the 1950s, the halfback position was both an offensive and defensive position. In the related sport of Canadian football, halfback is a defensive rather than offensive position. Before the emergence of the T-formation in the 1940s, all members of the offensive backfield were legitimate threats to run or pass the ball. Most teams used four offensive backs on every play: a quarterback, two halfbacks, and a fullback. The quarterback began each play a quarter of the way back, the halfbacks began each play side by side and halfway back, and the fullback began each play the farthest back. The sport's first triple threat, Bradbury Robinson of St. Louis University, ran, passed, received and punted out of the halfback position. It was as a halfback that Robinson threw the first legal forward pass to teammate Jack Schneider in a game at Carroll College on September 5, 1906. Now that most offensive formations have only one or two running backs, the original
    8.29
    7 votes
    2

    Gunner

    • Players: Steve Tasker
    In American football, a gunner, also known as a shooter or kamikaze, is a player on kickoffs and punts who specializes in running down the sideline very quickly in an attempt to tackle the kick returner or the punt returner. Gunners must have several techniques in order to break away or "shed" blockers, and have good agility in order to change their running direction quickly. Gunners on the punt team also must be able to block or catch. Gunners typically also play positions as defensive backs, cornerbacks, wide receivers, or running back when not on special teams, often as backups. Gunner may also refer to the one or two players assigned to block the gunner of the punting team. The NFL Pro Bowl features a "Special Teamer" position, along with a kicker, punter, and kick returner. This is often the gunner considered to be among the best. Recent Pro Bowlers include Matthew Slater, Kassim Osgood, Brendon Ayanbadejo, Hanik Milligan, Larry Izzo, David Tyree, Montell Owens, Jonathan Casillas, Stefan Logan, Anthony Madison and Sean Morey. Steve Tasker, a 7-time Pro Bowler, is considered to be the top gunner in NFL history. On punts there will be two offensive players on the punting team
    8.20
    5 votes
    3
    Linebacker

    Linebacker

    • Players: Odell Thurman
    A linebacker (LB) is a position in American football that was invented by football coach Fielding H. Yost of the University of Michigan. Linebackers are members of the defensive team, and line up approximately three to five yards (4 m) behind the line of scrimmage, behind the defensive linemen. Linebackers generally align themselves before the ball is snapped by standing upright in a "two point stance" (as opposed to the defensive linemen, who put one or two hands on the ground for a "three point stance" or "four point stance" before the ball is snapped). The goal of the linebacker is to provide either extra run protection or extra pass protection based on the particular defensive play being run. The middle or inside linebacker (MLB), sometimes called "Mike," is often referred to as the "quarterback of the defense." Often it is the middle linebacker who receives the defensive play calls from the sideline and relays that play to the rest of the team–and in the NFL he is usually the defensive player with the electronic sideline communicator. A jack-of-all-trades, the middle linebacker can be asked to blitz (though they often blitz less than the outside linebacker), cover, spy the
    8.00
    5 votes
    5

    Center

    • Players: Geoff Hangartner
    Center (C) is a position in American football and Canadian football. The center is the innermost lineman of the offensive line on a football team's offense. The center is also the player who passes (or "snaps") the ball between his legs to the quarterback at the start of each play. In recent years, the importance of centers for a football team has increased, due to the re-emergence of 3-4 defenses. According to Baltimore Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome, "you need to have somebody who can neutralize that nose tackle. If you don't, everything can get screwed up. Your running game won't be effective and you'll also have somebody in your quarterback's face on every play." The center's first and primary role is to pass the football to the quarterback. This exchange is called a snap. Most offensive schemes make adjustments based on how the defensive line and linebackers align itself to the offensive line, and what gaps they line up in. Because the center has an ideal view of the defensive formation before the snap, he typically makes the first line call. This call is typically based on the position of the defensive linemen or linebackers in his gaps (0i-1i), most subsequent
    7.40
    5 votes
    6
    9.00
    4 votes
    7
    8.50
    4 votes
    8
    6.20
    5 votes
    9

    Defensive lineman

    • Players: Joe Jackson
    A defensive lineman is any of the down positions on the defensive side of Canadian and American football. Although alignments vary, the most popular consist of either 3 or 4 down linemen. On a 3 lineman set, there are 2 Defensive Ends which bookend an often large Nose Tackle. In a 4 lineman set, the Ends bookend 2 Defensive Tackles. The primary job of a defensive lineman is to gain penetration past the line of scrimmage to disrupt an offensive play. The best results are a sack on the quarterback or tackling a ball carrier for a loss of yardage. Almost all Defensive Linemen have certain key traits. These are important factors that often make or break how a lineman performs. Defensive Lineman are responsible for controlling the line of scrimmage for the defense. They engage offensive lineman in hopes of freeing up the linebackers who are then able to make the tackle. Defensive Lineman are usually large weighing over 300 pounds. There are several variations of defensive lineman:
    7.25
    4 votes
    10
    Slotback

    Slotback

    • Players: Jason Clermont
    Slotback (sometimes referred to as an A-back) is a position in gridiron football. The "slot" is the area between the last offensive lineman on either side of the line of scrimmage and the wide receiver on that side. A player who lines up between those two players and behind the line of scrimmage is a slotback. The position appears primarily in Canadian football, but is also used at times in American football). The slotback is similar to the wide receiver but also has many of the same traits as a running back; a slotback lines up closer to the offensive line and often farther back than a wide receiver. Slotbacks are often as many as five yards behind the line of scrimmage when the ball is snapped and, in the Canadian game, may also make a running start toward the line of scrimmage prior to the snap. (In American football, this would be an illegal motion.) There are a number of different jobs a slotback may take up on the field. Primarily, they are used as hybrid running backs/receivers. However they are often used to block any player on the defensive team who breaks through the line of scrimmage, thus as a precaution to prevent the sacking of the quarterback. They are preferred over
    7.25
    4 votes
    11
    8.67
    3 votes
    14
    Quarterback

    Quarterback

    • Players: Bill Kenney
    Quarterback (QB, originally called blocking back) is a position in American and Canadian football. Quarterbacks are members of the offensive team and line up directly behind the offensive line. Quarterbacks are the leaders of the offensive team, responsible for calling the play in the huddle. At most levels, but especially at the college and professional level, the quarterback role is the most visible and important role on the team. The quarterback touches the ball on nearly every offensive play and has a great deal of responsibility both in calling plays and making decisions during the play. In most leagues, the quarterback's uniform number is as low as 1 and as high as 19. It is extremely rare that a quarterback has a number over 19. While there is liberal substitution at most positions in football based on the play call and to minimize player fatigue, most quarterbacks are on the field for every offensive play leaving only for injury or when the game's outcome is no longer in doubt. Quarterbacks are frequently chosen early in the NFL Draft and often receive much more lucrative contracts than other positions. As of 2011, players in this position have won more Super Bowl MVP
    8.33
    3 votes
    15
    8.00
    3 votes
    16
    Running back

    Running back

    • Players: Blair Thomas
    A running back (RB) is a gridiron football position who is typically lined up in the offensive backfield. The primary roles of a running back are to receive handoffs from the quarterback for a rushing play, to catch passes from out of the backfield, and to block. There are usually one or two running backs on the field for a given play, depending on the offensive formation. A running back may be a halfback (HB for short, in certain contexts also referred to as a tailback) or a fullback (FB). The halfback or tailback position is recognized as one of the more glamorous positions on the field, as it is often integral in both the passing and running attack. He is responsible for carrying the ball on the majority of running plays, and may frequently be used as a receiver on short passing plays. In today's game, an effective halfback must have a superior blend of both quickness and agility as a runner, as well as sure hands and shrewd vision upfield as a receiver. More and more quarterbacks depend on halfbacks as a safety valve receiver when primary targets downfield are covered or when they are under pressure. Occasionally, they line up as additional wide receivers. When not serving
    6.25
    4 votes
    17
    Wide receiver

    Wide receiver

    • Players: Marty Booker
    A wide receiver is an offensive position in American and Canadian football, and is the key player in most of the passing plays. The wide receiver position requires speed and agility. Only players in the backfield or the ends on the line are eligible to catch a forward pass. The two players who begin play at the ends of the offensive line are eligible receivers, as are all players in the backfield. The backs and ends who are relatively near the sidelines are referred to as "wide" receivers. At the start of play, one wide receiver may begin play in the backfield, at least a yard behind the line of scrimmage, as is shown in the diagram at the right. The wide receiver on the right begins play in the backfield. Such positioning allows another player, usually the tight end, to become the eligible receiver on that side of the line. Such positioning defines the strong side of the field. This is the right side of the field in the diagram shown. The wide receiver (WR) or a flanker is a position in American and Canadian football is the pass-catching specialist. Wide receivers (also referred to as wideouts or simply receivers) are among the fastest and most agile players in the game, and they
    6.25
    4 votes
    18

    Kickoff specialist

    A kickoff specialist (KOS) is a seldom-used position in American and Canadian football. Kickoff specialists are members of the special teams. They are responsible to kick the ball in the kickoff. These players tend to have a strong leg, often capable of making touchbacks, and capable of keeping a ball in the bounds of the field of play but do not have the accuracy or technique required to be a full-time placekicker or punter. Due to modern roster restrictions, most NFL teams do not elect to have a kickoff specialist, and instead use their placekickers (or, less often, punters) on kickoffs. During the 2009 NFL season Rhys Lloyd of the Carolina Panthers and David Buehler of the Dallas Cowboys were the only players employed solely as a kickoff specialist. Likewise, in high school football and most other professional leagues, one kicker handles all three kicking positions. Even college football teams usually do not utilize kickoff specialists, despite the much larger rosters at that level.
    7.67
    3 votes
    19
    6.00
    4 votes
    20

    Quarterback (Defensive)

    The defensive quarterback is the seventh defensive back on the field. He is usually the fifth cornerback or a second or third safety. Since he will usually only be on the field when the defense is absolutely sure that the offense will pass, the defensive quarterback must be fast and have good coverage skills. In his presence, a linebacker or defensive tackle is usually taken off the field. When he is on the field, the defensive formation is called the "quarter" formation.
    7.33
    3 votes
    21
    Holder

    Holder

    In American football the holder is the player who receives the snap from the long snapper during field goal attempts made by the placekicker. The holder is set on one knee approximately 7 yards behind the line-of-scrimmage. While the holder is set, he places the hand which is closest to the place kicker on the ground (In high school and NCAA the holder is responsible for a kicking block, which lifts the ball off of the turf), and holds the other hand out to receive the snap. After receiving the snap, the holder will place the football on the turf, or block, with the laces facing the uprights, and balance the finger with one or two finger(s). The holder, like the placekicker and the long snapper, is protected from intentional contact from the opposing team. The penalty for roughing the holder is 15 yards and an automatic first down. Compared to other American football positions, the holder is one of the most trivial positions, requiring precision in the receipt of a snap and placement of a ball in short time, but requiring far less physical talent than a skill position and much less bulk or strength than a lineman. Because of this, it is exceptionally rare for a team to preserve a
    9.00
    2 votes
    22
    8.50
    2 votes
    23

    Nose guard

    • Players: David Grant
    Nose guard is a defensive alignment position for a defensive lineman in American and Canadian football. The nose tackle aligns across the line of scrimmage from the offense's center before the play begins.. In five-lineman situations, such as a goal-line formation, the nose guard is the innermost lineman, flanked on either side by a defensive tackle or defensive end. The nose guard lines up directly opposite the offensive center, or over the center's "nose". The nose guard is also used in a 50 read defense. In this defense there is a nose guard, two defensive tackles, and two outside linebackers who can play on the line of scrimmage or off the line of scrimmage in a two point stance. The nose guard lines up head up on the center about 6-18” off the ball. In a reading 50 defense, the nose guards key is to read the offensive center to the ball. In run away, the nose guards job is to shed the blocker and pursue down the line of scrimmage, taking an angle of pursuit. Nose guards tend to be shorter than most other defensive linemen. In a traditional 4-3 defensive set, there is no nose tackle. Instead there is a left and right defensive tackle. In a 3-4 defensive scheme, the nose tackle
    6.67
    3 votes
    24

    Defensive tackle

    • Players: Jonathan Lewis
    Defensive tackle is a position on the field in American and Canadian football. Defensive Tackles, or DTs, are typically the largest and strongest of the defensive players. The defensive tackle typically lines up opposite one of the offensive guards. Depending on a team's individual defensive scheme, a defensive tackle may be called upon to fill several different roles. These roles may include merely holding the point of attack by refusing to be moved, or penetrating a certain gap between offensive linemen to break up a play in the opponent's backfield. If a defensive tackle reads a pass play, his primary responsibility is to pursue the quarterback, or simply knock the pass down at the line if it's within arm's reach. Other responsibilities of the defensive tackle may be to pursue the screen pass or drop into coverage in a zone blitz scheme. In the 3-4 defensive scheme the sole defensive tackle is referred to as the nose tackle. The primary responsibility of the defensive tackle in this scheme is to absorb multiple blockers so that other players in the defensive front can attack ballcarriers and rush the quarterback.
    6.33
    3 votes
    27
    6.33
    3 votes
    28
    10.00
    1 votes
    29

    Dimeback

    • Players: Dunta Robinson
    In American football, a dimeback is a cornerback who serves as the sixth defensive back (fourth cornerback) on defense. The third cornerback on defense is known as a nickelback. The dimeback position is essentially relegated to backup cornerbacks who do not play starting cornerback positions. Dimebacks are usually fast players because they must be able to keep up on passing plays with 3+ wide receivers. Dimebacks are brought into the game when the defense uses a "Dime" formation, which utilizes six defensive backs rather than four or five. Usually, a dimeback replaces a linebacker in order to gain better pass defense.
    7.50
    2 votes
    30
    7.50
    2 votes
    31

    Nickelback

    In American football, a nickelback is a cornerback who serves as the fifth (in addition to the typical four) defensive back on the defense. A base defense contains four defensive backs, consisting of two cornerbacks, and two safeties. Adding an extra back makes five, hence the term "nickel", which is the name for 5-cent coins in the United States and Canada. Usually the nickelback will take the place of a linebacker, so if the team were to be in a 4–3 formation, there would now be four linemen, only two linebackers and five defensive backs creating a 4-2-5 formation. However, some teams will replace a lineman rather than a linebacker, creating a three linemen, three linebacker and five defensive back alignment, a 3–3–5 formation. If an offensive team always uses three or more wide receivers, a defense may turn to a nickel defense for their base package on most plays. Usually extra defensive backs, such as a nickelback, are substituted into the defense in situations where the opposing offense is likely to attempt a forward pass, such as 3rd-and-long, or when extra receivers are substituted into the opposing offense. The nickelback is the third cornerback on the depth chart. The
    7.50
    2 votes
    32
    Tight end

    Tight end

    • Players: Marv Cook
    The tight end (TE) is a position in American football on the offense. The tight end is often seen as a hybrid position with the characteristics and roles of both an offensive lineman and a wide receiver. Like offensive linemen, they are usually lined up on the offensive line and are large enough to be effective blockers. On the other hand, they are eligible receivers adept enough to warrant a defense's attention when running pass patterns. Because of the hybrid nature of the position, the tight end's role in any given offense depends on the tactical preferences and philosophy of the head coach. In some systems, the tight end will merely act as a sixth offensive lineman rarely going out for passes. Other systems utilize the tight end primarily as a receiver, frequently taking advantage of the tight end's size to create mismatches in the defensive secondary. Many coaches will often have one tight end who specializes in blocking in running situations while utilizing a better pass catching tight end in obvious passing situations. Offensive formations may have between zero and two tight ends at one time. If a wide receiver is present in a formation, but outside the tight end, the wide
    7.50
    2 votes
    33

    Fullback

    • Players: Marcel Reece
    A fullback (FB) is a positon in the offensive backfield in American and Canadian football, and is one of the two running back positions along with the halfback. Typically, fullbacks are larger in size than halfbacks and in most offensive schemes their duties are split between power running and blocking for both the quarterback and the other running back. Many of the great runners of the history of American football have been fullbacks, notably Jim Brown, Franco Harris, and Larry Csonka; in recent years the position has evolved to be more a blocker than a runner, with occasional pass-catching duties. While some teams have actually phased-out fullbacks altogether in favor of two tight end sets (notably, Indianapolis Colts have fullback spots filled by backup tight ends), the remaining prominent fullbacks in the NFL such as Ovie Mughelli, Leonard Weaver, Owen Schmitt and Tony Richardson are typically employed for breaking through tight defensive alignments, often in short-yardage situations as they are usually larger and heavier than halfbacks or tailbacks, or for screen passes. As a result, fullbacks are typically known less for speed and agility and more for muscularity and the
    9.00
    1 votes
    34
    9.00
    1 votes
    35
    9.00
    1 votes
    36

    Defensive end

    • Players: Alvin McKinley
    Defensive end (DE) is the name of a defensive position in the sport of American and Canadian football. This position has designated the players at each end of the defensive line, but changes in formations have substantially changed how the position is played over the years. As of 2012, a defensive end has been the number one recruited player on Espn 150 for three straight years (2011,2012,2013). Early formations, with six- and seven-man lines, used the end as a containment player, whose job was first to prevent an "end run" around his position, then secondarily to force plays inside. When most teams adopted a five-man line, two different styles of end play developed: "crashing" ends, who rushed into the backfield to disrupt plays, and "stand-up" or "waiting" ends, who played the more traditional containment style. Some teams would use both styles of end play, depending on game situations. Traditionally, defensive ends are in a three-point stance, with their free hand cocked back ready to "punch" the offensive lineman, or in a "two-point stance" like a linebacker so they can keep containment. Some defensive ends play the position due to their size; they close down their gap so the
    7.00
    2 votes
    37

    H-back

    • Players: James Jenkins
    An H-Back is an offensive position in American football. The H-back lines up similarly to a tight end, but is "set back" from the line of scrimmage, and is thus counted as one of the four "backs" in the offensive formation. The position was made notable in the NFL by the Washington Redskins under head coach Joe Gibbs, who ran a two tight end system. The position was named F-Back when used later in Norv Turner's offensive system. The name H-back can be confusing, because the H-back rarely carries the ball as running backs do, instead the H-back plays a position similar to a tight end. The name stems from the playbook notation in use at the time the position was developed. Under the system used by Joe Gibbs (and indeed, by many teams then as now), the standard set of eligible ball carriers consisted of three receivers and three backs. The three receivers, the split end, tight end, and flanker, were labeled "X", "Y", and "Z" on play diagrams. The three backs, quarterback, halfback, and fullback, were labeled "Q", "H", and "F". Gibbs' innovation was to move one of the backs up to the line of scrimmage, to act as an extra tight end. At the time the system was developed, the best running
    7.00
    2 votes
    38

    Middle guard

    A middle guard is a position of a defensive player in American football. This position is rare today and was more commonly used during the 1960s and 1970s. The closest related positions in today's American football would be nose guard or defensive tackle. During the Napoleonic Wars, the Middle Guard was a component of Napoleon's Imperial Guard. The Middle Guard ranked between the senior guard corps, the Old Guard, and the junior guard corps, the Young Guard. See Elting, Swords Around a Throne: Napoleon's Grande Armee (Free Press, New York, 1988), p. 197. The Fusiliers Grenadiers and the Fusiliers Chasseurs, among other units, were part of the Middle Guard. See Funcken, Arms and Uniforms, the Napoleonic Wars, Part 2 (Ward Lock, London, 1977), pp. 14,20.
    7.00
    2 votes
    39
    Punter

    Punter

    • Players: Lee Johnson
    A punter (P) in American or Canadian football is a special teams player who receives the snapped ball directly from the line of scrimmage and then punts (kicks) the football to the opposing team so as to limit any field position advantage. This generally happens on a fourth down in American football and a third down in the Canadian version. Punters may also occasionally take part in fake punts in those same situations, when they throw or run the football instead of punting. A punter must be skilled in angling the football and/or kicking it as high as possible (called "hangtime") to maximize his teammates’ ability to eliminate a punt returner's forward progress. Also, the punter will try to make the ball spin in an unusual manner making it harder to catch, which could result in a muff and potentially lead to the punter's team gaining possession. Punters are rarely well known or recognized by fans, but play a major role in winning the field position battle. Today, punters have increasingly begun to pull double duty as the holder on field goal attempts and also being used on kickoffs. One of the main reasons why punters are starting to take over the holder position is that the backup
    7.00
    2 votes
    40
    7.00
    2 votes
    41
    7.00
    2 votes
    42
    5.33
    3 votes
    44
    6.50
    2 votes
    46

    Offensive tackle

    • Players: Jackie Slater
    Tackle is a playing position in American and Canadian football. Historically, in the one-platoon system a tackle played on both offense and defense. In the modern system of specialized units, offensive tackle and defensive tackle are separate positions. The offensive tackle (OT, T) is a position of the offensive line, left and right. Like other offensive linemen, their job is to block: to physically keep defenders away from the offensive player who has the football. The term "tackle" is a vestige of an earlier era of football, in which the same players played both offense and defense. A tackle is the strong position on the offensive line. They power their blocks with quick steps and maneuverability. The tackles are mostly in charge of the outside protection. If the tight end goes out for a pass, the tackle must cover everyone that his guard does not, plus whoever the tight end is not covering. Usually they defend against defensive ends. In the NFL, offensive tackles often measure over 6 ft 4 in (193 cm) and 300 lb (140 kg). According to Sports Illustrated football journalist Paul "Dr. Z" Zimmerman, offensive tackles consistently achieve the highest scores, relative to the other
    6.50
    2 votes
    47
    Cornerback

    Cornerback

    • Players: Kelvin Hayden
    A cornerback (CB) (also referred to as a corner) is a member of the defensive backfield or secondary in American and Canadian football. Cornerbacks cover receivers, to defend against pass offenses and make tackles. Other members of the defensive backfield include the safeties and occasionally linebackers. The cornerback position requires speed and agility. Since shorter players tend to be more agile than taller players, cornerbacks are typically among the shortest players on the team. A cornerback's skillset typically requires proficiency in anticipating the quarterback, back-pedalling, executing single and zone coverage, disrupting pass routes, shedding blockers, and tackling. The chief responsibility of the cornerback is to defend against the offense's pass. The rules of American professional football and American college football do not mandate starting position, movement, or coverage zones for any member of the defense. There are no "illegal defense" formations. Cornerbacks can be anywhere on the defensive side of the line of scrimmage at the start of play, although their proximity, formations, and strategies are outlined by the coaching staff or captain. Most modern National
    8.00
    1 votes
    48
    Placekicker

    Placekicker

    • Players: Raul Allegre
    Placekicker, or simply kicker (PK or K), is the title of the player in American and Canadian football who is responsible for the kicking duties of field goals, extra points. In many cases, the placekicker also serves as the team's kickoff specialist (KOS) or, more rarely, punter (P), as well. The kicker initially was not a specialized role. Until the 1960s, the kicker was almost always doubled at another position on the roster, George Blanda, Frank Gifford and Paul Hornung being some of the more prominent examples of players who were stars at other positions as well as being known for their kicking abilities. As the era of "two-way" players gave way to increased specialization, teams would employ a specialist at the punter or kicker position. Because of the difference in techniques needed, to avoid leg fatigue, and to reduce the risk of injury, on the professional level most teams employ separate players to handle the jobs. The placekicker usually will only punt when the punter is injured, and vice-versa. (One player often handles both jobs in the Canadian Football League, which has smaller active rosters than in the NFL.) A professional team will occasionally even have a "kickoff
    8.00
    1 votes
    51

    Safety

    • Players: Tank Williams
    Safety (S) is a position in American and Canadian football, played by a member of the defense. The safeties are defensive backs who line up from ten to fifteen yards behind the line of scrimmage. There are two variations of the position in a typical formation, the free safety (FS) and the strong safety (SS). Their duties depend on the defensive scheme. The defensive responsibilities of the safety and cornerback usually involve pass coverage towards the middle and sidelines of the field, respectively. Safeties are the last line of defense, and are thus expected to be sure tacklers. As professional and college football have become more focused on the passing game, safeties have become more involved in covering the eligible pass receivers. The strong safety tends to be somewhat larger and stronger than the free safety. However, the word strong is used because he is assigned to cover the "strong side" of the offense, the side on which the big, powerful tight end lines up on offensive plays. The strong safety tends to play closer to the line and assist in stopping the run. He may also be responsible for covering a player, such as a running back or fullback or H-back, who comes out of
    6.00
    2 votes
    52
    Return specialist

    Return specialist

    • Players: Willie Ponder
    A Return Specialist is a player on American football or Canadian football special teams who specializes in returning punts and kickoff returns. There are few players who are exclusively return specialists; most play other positions as well. The special teams counterpart of a return specialist is a kicking specialist.
    4.33
    3 votes
    54

    Nose tackle

    • Players: Russell Maryland
    Nose tackle (NT) is a defensive alignment position for a defensive lineman in American and Canadian football. The nose tackle aligns across the line of scrimmage from the offense's center before the play begins. In a traditional 4-3 defensive set, there is no nose tackle. Instead there is a left and right defensive tackle. In a 3-4 defensive scheme, the nose tackle is the sole defensive tackle, lining up directly opposite the center in the "0-technique" position. Like the traditional 4-3, the nose tackle must occupy the center and one guard, however in the 3-4 it is typically the weak-side or pulling guard. One defensive end then matches up with both the strongside tackle and/or strongside guard, while the other occupies the classic 1-on-1 matchup against the weakside tackle. This leaves the outside linebackers free to pass-rush, creating the 3-4 scheme's distinctive pressure on the passing game. In order for a 3-4 to be effective, it needs a dominant nose tackle, which is very hard to find. Ted Washington, who in his prime weighted around at most 380 pounds, is considered the prototypical 3-4 nose tackle of this era. Because of nose tackles' ability to block two offensive linemen,
    5.00
    2 votes
    55

    End

    • Players: Ron Kramer
    An end in American football is a player who lines up at either end of the line of scrimmage. Rules state that a legal offensive formation must always consist of seven players on the line of scrimmage. An end who lines up close to the offensive line is known as a tight end, while one who lines up some distance from the offensive line is known as a split end. In recent years, the generic term wide receiver has come to define both split ends and flankers (backs who line up in split positions but behind the line of scrimmage). The terms "split end" and "flanker" are no longer in common usage. There is a commonly-used position on the defense called the defensive end. However, as there are no rules regulating the formation of the defense, players at this position commonly take on and share multiple roles with other positions in different defensive schemes. Before the advent of two platoons, in which teams fielded distinct defensive and offensive units, players that lined up on the ends of the line on both offense and defense were referred to simply as "ends".
    6.00
    1 votes
    57
    Lineman

    Lineman

    • Players: John Ward
    In American football, a lineman is a player who specializes in play at the line of scrimmage. The linemen of the team currently in possession of the ball are the offensive line, while linemen on the opposing team are the defensive line. A number of NFL rules specifically address restrictions and requirements for the offensive line. The defensive line is covered by the same rules that apply to all defensive players. Linemen are usually the largest players on the field in both height and weight, since their positions usually require less running and more strength than skill positions. The interior offensive line consists of the center, who is responsible for snapping the ball into play, two guards who flank the center, and two offensive tackles who flank the guards; NFL rules require that a team have all five of these interior linemen on the field for every offensive play. In addition to the interior line, a full offensive line may also include a tight end outside one or both of the tackles. Interior offensive linemen are not eligible to catch forward passes, and are not allowed to have advanced past the line of scrimmage at the time a pass is thrown unless they are in contact with a
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    58

    Long snapper

    • Players: Jon Dorenbos
    In American football and Canadian football, the term long snapper refers to a player who is a specialized center during punts, field goals, and extra point attempts. His job is to snap the ball as quickly and accurately as possible. During field goals and point after touchdown, the snap is received by the holder typically 7-8 yards away. During punt plays the snap is delivered to the punter from 13-15 yards away. Following the snap the snapper often executes a blocking assignment, and on a punt he must cover the kick. A good, consistent long snapper is hard to find, and many marginally talented players have found a niche exclusively as long snappers. A "bad snap" is an off-target snap which causes the delay of a kick or the failure of a play. Many college football teams run a spread punt formation which can free the snapper from blocking assignments and allows for concentration on covering the return or downing the ball farther inside the opponent's territory. A traditional or "cup" formation typically gives the snapper a blocking assignment before covering the punt. The snapper in a punt formation can be referred to as a deep snapper or long snapper synonymously and the term short
    4.00
    1 votes
    59

    Defensive back

    • Players: Fred Smoot
    In American football and Canadian football, defensive backs (DBs) are the players on the defensive team who take positions somewhat back from the line of scrimmage; they are distinguished from the defensive line players and linebackers, who take positions directly behind or close to the line of scrimmage. The defensive backs, in turn, generally are classified into several different specialized positions: The group of defensive backs is known collectively as the secondary. They most often defend the wide receiver corps; however, at times they may also line up against a tight end or a split out running back. They are usually the smallest, quickest players on the field.
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    60
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    61
    Guard

    Guard

    • Players: Tony Moll
    In American and Canadian football, a guard (G) is a player that lines up between the center and the tackles on the offensive line of a football team. The guard's job is to protect the quarterback from the incoming defensive line and linebackers during pass plays, as well as creating openings (holes) for the running backs to head through. Guards perform speed blocking and "pulling"—sprinting out in front of a running back in order to block for him. Guards are automatically considered ineligible receivers, so they cannot intentionally touch a forward pass, unless it is to recover a fumble or is first touched by a defender or eligible receiver. Right guards (RG) is the term for the guards on the right of the offensive line, while left guards (LG) are on the left side. Guards are to the right or left of the center.
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    62
    Kick returner

    Kick returner

    • Players: Dwight Stone
    In American and Canadian football, a kick returner (KR) is the player on special teams who is primarily responsible to catch kickoffs and attempts to return them in the opposite direction. If the ball is kicked into his own endzone, he must assess the situation on the field while the ball is in the air and determine if it would be beneficial to his team for a return. If he decides that it is not, he can make a touchback by kneeling down in the end zone after catching the ball, which gives his team the ball at their own 20-yard line to start the drive. He is usually one of the faster players on the team, often a wide receiver, defensive back, or running back. While starters on offense or defense sometimes assume this role, it is usually given to backup in order to prevent them from spending more time on the field and taking extra hits. A kick returner might also double as a punt returner as well. Sometimes players who make big plays at the punt or kick returner positions become well known "return specialist" players (e.g. Dan Trueman). The following table ranks all National Football League kick returners with at least 4 touchdown returns through the 2008 season by touchdown return
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    63

    Punt returner

    • Players: Charley Trippi
    Punt returner (PR) is a position on special teams in American football. The role of a punt returner is to catch the ball after it is punted and to give his team good field position (or a touchdown if possible) by returning it. Before catching the punted ball, the returner must assess the situation on the field while the ball is still in the air. He must determine if it is actually beneficial for his team to attempt a return. If it appears that the players from the punting team will be too close to the returner by the time he catches the ball, or it appears the ball will go into his own end zone, the punt returner can elect not to return the ball by choosing one of two options: The position demands footspeed, quick reflexes, and good hands. Punt returners sometimes also return kickoffs and usually play other positions, especially wide receiver, defensive back and running back, although sometimes as backups. An analogous position exists in Canadian football, though differences in rules affect play considerably. See Comparison of Canadian and American football for a complete discussion of the punt returner's role in the Canadian game.
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