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Braintree Youth Flag Football

Braintree Youth Flag Football

A volunteer, non-profit, organization developed for Braintree Youth ages 7 to 14.



The Basics

A coin toss determines first possession.
The offensive team takes possession of the ball at its 5-yard line and has four plays to cross midfield. Once a
team crosses midfield, it has four plays to score a touchdown. If the offense fails to score, the ball changes
possession and the new offensive team takes over on its’ 5-yard line.
If the offensive team fails to cross midfield, possession of the ball changes and the opposition starts its drive
from its’ 5-yard line.

Defensive alignments must be man-to- man coverage. No Zone/Area coverage is allowed.
All possession changes start on the offenses’ 5-yard line except interceptions.
Interceptions begin where the flag is pulled unless it results in a touchdown.
Team changes sides after the first 20 minutes. Possession changes to loser of coin toss unless deferred and
the clock does not stop.


Touchdown: 6 points
Extra point:
1 point (played from 5-yeard line) consisting of PASS play only – or –
2 points (played from 12-yard line) consisting of either a RUN or PASS play)
Safety: 2 points


The quarterback cannot run with the ball unless handed back off (i.e. reversal) or thrown to them as a forward
pass that is received across the line of scrimmage.
Only direct handoffs behind the line of scrimmage are permitted. Offense may use multiple handoffs but
laterals are not allowed.
“No running zones” are located five yards from each end zone and five yards on either side of the midfield.
These pass-only zones are designed to avoid short-yardage, power-running situations.
The player who takes the handoff can throw the ball from behind the line of scrimmage.
Once the ball has been handed off, all defensive players are eligible to rush.

Updated 2023

**Exceptions can be made but only if a team has less than 7 players show up, point is to get the kids playing, not standing on the sidelines.
***If one team has 14, other team has 10, the game will play 7v7. (not having a full squad is not an excuse to play less than 7v7.

Spinning is allowed
, but players can not leave their feet to avoid a defensive player.

Diving for flags is not allowed.
The ball is spotted where the ball carrier’s feet are when the flag is pulled, not where the ball is located.
The player’s feet must cross the goal line for a touchdown.
Absolutely NO laterals or pitches of any kind are allowed.
Absolutely NO SNEAK PLAYS: Quarterback, Center or other.


All players are eligible to receive passes, including the quarterback if the ball has been handed off behind the
line of scrimmage, but passes MUST cross the line of scrimmage.
Only one player is allowed in motion at a time. The player must come to a complete stop before the ball is
A player must have at least one foot inbounds when making a reception.
Dead Ball
Play is ruled “dead” when:

Ball carrier’s flag is pulled
Ball carrier steps out of bounds
Touchdown or safety is scored
Ball carrier’s knee hits the ground
Ball carrier’s flag falls out
Note: There are no fumbles. The ball is spotted where the player's feet were when the ball hit the ground.


The ball must be snapped between the legs, not off to one side, to start play.
Shotgun can be used in the 12/13/14 DIVISION ONLY. The quarterback can be no more than 5 yards from the
line of scrimmage. Wildcat offense is not allowed (ex. No direct snap to the running back).
Shovel passes are allowed but the ball MUST move forward of the line of scrimmage.
The quarterback has a five-second “pass clock”. If a pass is not thrown within the five seconds, play continues and all players may rush the quarterback.
Once the ball is handed off, the five-second rule no longer is in effect. All players may pursue the ball carrier
Interceptions may be returned


Rushing the Quarterback

A marker, or linesman, will designate seven yards from the line of scrimmage for the rusher to stand on.
The player who rushes the passer must be a minimum of seven yards from the line of scrimmage when the
ball is snapped.
Designated pass rusher may not advance from the 7-yard spot prior to the expiration of the 5-second count.

Any number of players can rush the quarterback once the defensive designated rusher crosses the line of
scrimmage or a hand-off occurs.
Players not rushing the quarterback may defend on the line of scrimmage.
Once the ball is handed of, the seven-yard rule no longer is in effect, and all defenders may go behind the line
of scrimmage.
Remember, no blocking, plays that utilize blocking interferences or tackling are not allowed.


If the field monitor or referee witnesses any acts of tackling, elbowing, cheap shots, blocking or any
unsportsmanlike act, the game will be stopped and the player will be ejected from the game.


Trash talking is illegal and will not be tolerated.
League Officials, including referees, have the right to determine offensive language. (Language and actions
that may be offensive to officials, opposing players, teams or spectators is considered to be trash talk).
If trash-talking occurs, the referee will give ONE warning. If it continues, the referee must contact a director
on duty and the player or players will be ejected from the game.

Players/Game Schedules

Teams must field the minimum number of players for their division at all times. Players should be allowed the
opportunity to experience each position during each game. Quarterbacks are only allowed to play 3 sets of
downs per game. Games are scheduled to begin on the hour beginning at 5:30 pm.


Games are played to 40 minutes running time. However, in the last minute of play in each half the clock stops
if any of the following occurs: a 30-second time-out is called; an incomplete pass or a player goes out of
Each time the ball is spotted, a team has 30 seconds to snap the ball. Teams will receive one warning before
a delay-of-game penalty is enforced.
Each team has one 30-second time-out per half.
Officials can stop the clock at their discretion (i.e. injury, etc.)



All penalties will be called by the referee and is at their discretion.

Defensive Penalties

Offsides: Five yards and automatic first down
Interference: 10 yards and automatic first down
Illegal contact: (holding, blocking etc) 10 yards and automatic first down
Illegal FLAG pull: (before receiver has ball) 10 yards and automatic first down
Illegal rushing: (starting rush from inside 7-yard marker) 10 yards and automatic first down
Referees determine incidental contact that may result from normal run of play.

Offensive Penalties

Illegal motion (more than one person moving, false starts, etc). Five yards and loss of down
Illegal forward pass: (pass thrown beyond line of scrimmage) five yards and loss of down
Offensive pass interference: (illegal pick play, pushing off/away defender) 10 yards and loss of down
FLAG guarding 10 yards (from line of scrimmage) and loss of down
Delay of game: Clock stops, 10 yards and loss of down
All penalties will be assessed from the line of scrimmage.

Only the team captain may ask the referee questions about rule clarification and interpretations.
cannon question judgement calls.
Coaches and other adults are not permitted to speak with the referees at any time.


Cleats are allowed, except for metal spikes. Inspections must be made prior to game.
Official NFL FLAG jersey and flags must be worn during play.
Belts should be tied so they do not interfere with flag.
Shirts cannot interfere with the visibility and access to the flags. Participants should tuck their shirts in while playing.
All players must wear a protective mouthpiece; there are no exceptions.
If a player does not have a 
mouthpiece, jersey and flags – they cannot play.

Other Notes: There are no kickoffs, and no blocking is allowed ever. Games cannot end on a defensive penalty, unless the offense declines it.

Contact us

Braintree Youth Flag Football

Braintree, Massachusetts 02184
Email: [email protected]

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