Flag on the Play: Offensive & Defensive Delay of Game Penalty

Did you know there’s more than one way to get a delay of game penalty in the NFL?

After a play stops the offense has 40 seconds to run the next play. If the ball is not snapped before the 40 second timer reaches zero the offense gets a penalty. The penalty is a delay of game and costs the offense five yards. This is the most common way to get this penalty.

Another way to get a delay of game penalty is to spike the ball at a time when your team did not score a touchdown. Sometimes you’ll see players tempted to do this after an interception.

Also, if a defensive player lays on the ball after the play is over or just lays on a runner after the play is stopped he could be called for a delay of game. The point is to prevent the defense from stopping the offense from being quicker with their plays.

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