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How to Play Flash Football


Essentially, we're all just here to have fun so play clean, show good sportsmanship and be friendly! If you've never played in one of our leagues before, you should know that we're similar to 'Who's Line is it Anyway?': The points don't really matter and the rules are made up! The referees have complete authority over the game and can assign any amount of points to any team for any reason - best to be on their good side. They generally just keep score, but they have the option of assigning style points for something cool or taking away points for something not so cool... 'Referee' is really a loose term here, too - they're more like game managers. They're doing their best to keep the game going and making sure everyone is having a good time.

WTF is this game?!

Here's how we arrived here... we organized a bunch of friends to help us develop a flag rugby game. About 15 minutes in, we realized this was never a going to be something we could offer as a league. Half of us were already bruised or bleeding... it was complete chaos and pandemonium. After about 50 iterations, we eventually arrived at something that was essentially just ultimate frisbee with a rugby ball. Turned out that is was a TOTAL BLAST! It's a fast-paced, high-scoring game with tons of turnovers and lots of player utilization. So why not just play ultimate frisbee? 

Frisbee vs. Rugby Ball                           Frisbee   Rugby Ball
Ease of throwing and catching X
Playing in the wind X
Required field size X

So there you have it. 

The Field

We will play on a half-football size field with an adult-sized rugby ball. The field will be about 50-yards long by about 25-yards wide with a 12-yard endzone on each end. The field will be delineated with cones and pylons. 5 yards beyond the back of the endzone will be a suspended hoop.

Sequence of Play

We'll start with a kickoff, because kickoffs are fun. Captains will Ro-Sham-Bo for which direction they want to take it in the first half and decide whether they want to kick or receive to start. We'll play two 25-minute halves, with no real half-time break - just swapping sides of the fields and grabbing a quick swig of water. At the start of the second half, the team that received the ball at the start of the game will kick. 

Playing Offense

Lots of passing is required to move the ball. You cannot hold the ball for more than 5 seconds and you cannot take more than 3 steps while the ball is in your possession. Doing either will result in a turnover.

For the two of you who will get excited about this; yes, you can kick the ball rather than throw if you prefer. It still can't touch the ground.

If your team was just scored against, you will begin your drive with each of your players in the endzone. The thrower will yell, "Go!" to begin the drive. This is the only time the 5-count count will not be kept. The initial thrower of the drive can take up to 30 seconds to find an open player.

If the ball is dropped or a catch is incomplete, it's an immediate turnover near where the ball hit the ground. There is no ceremonial turnover process, they just pick it up and go.

If the ball goes out of bounds, it will result in a throw-in similar to soccer. 

Offensive pass interference will result in a turnover.

Playing Defense

The ball can be intercepted or knocked down for a turnover. 

The ball cannot be cherry-picked from someone's hands.

The thrower has a personal bubble that must be respected. A defender can guard against a throw similar to basketball, but cannot hover over them and swat at their appendages. Use common sense.

Defensive pass interference will be considered a catch for the receiver.

The hoop cannot be defended from out-of-bounds. Doing so will result in an assumed successful shot with full points awarded.


Get your whole body in the endzone for a point! However, if you so choose, before you step into the endzone, you can attempt to through the ball through the hoop for 5 points! If you miss, it will count as a turnover.

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