Backwards pitch

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Backwards pitch

Postby CoachTJones » Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:56 pm

Call me crazy off I'm an idiot and don't know all the rules. This penalty was called on our JH tonight vs Petersburg, who I have no issue with, classy ball club. This is the call and explination. Which Petersburg declined.

Call: Illegal Shift

Explination: You can not pitch the ball backwards more than once and then make a forward pass.

Play: Spread. Fullback in slot. Motions into Backfield. HB receives snap and pitches to FB. FB runs option with SB who is behind him. FB pitches to SB. SB throws to WR.

Is this a rule? I was under the impression that the only limitation is 1 forward pass. Help.
CoachTJones
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Re: Backwards pitch

Postby fencewire » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:00 am

Well 1st off, what ever it was, if anything, wasn’t an illegal shift, as that foul deals with more than one player shifting prior to the snap at the same time and not being set a full second prior to the snap.

Seeing the play would help but what they actually called, I think, maybe, was an illegal forward pass.

Now to see if they were right with the rule but wrong with the message. You state that the “HB receives the snap and pitches to the FB” who you stated was in motion from the slot. Was this motion in front of or behind the HB? I am invisioning that the motion man is coming down the line in front of the HB who received the snap in a shotgun. If that is the case then they were correct, the pitch from the HB to the FB in motion (if he was between the line of scrimmage and the HB) would be a forward pass. Then when the SB throws to the WR that would be the second forward pass of the down.

You are correct in that you can have as many backward passes as you want during a down, but pitches behind the LOS that are forward are forward passes of which you can only have one. If that pitch from HB to FB is forward behind the LOS and is dropped, it should be ruled as an incomplete pass and not a fumble and the ball is dead.

Now if the motion was behind the HB and that pitch too was backward, then that would not be a foul, or if the HB handed the ball to the FB coming in motion that too would be legal as well.

The penalty for the second forward pass, if that’s what it was, should have been 5 yards from the spot of the second pass and loss of down. You mentioned it was declined, odd, because enforcement of that penalty would be advantageous for the defense unless there was a turnover on the play.
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Re: Backwards pitch

Postby CoachTJones » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:49 am

The motion was into the back field. Starting point was right slot,and end point was where the right upback would be in balanced spread. The pitch was a sweep style pitch to the FB which was a backwards pass. Second pitch was an option style backward pass to the SB.
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