In American and Canadian football, a line of scrimmage is an imaginary transverse line….which runs the width across the football field beyond which a team cannot cross until the next play has begun. Its location is based on the spot where the ball is placed after the end of the most recent play and following the assessment of any penalty yards.
A line of scrimmage is parallel to the goal lines and touches one edge of the ball where it sits on the ground prior to the snap….where under NFL, NCAA and NFHS rules….there are two lines of scrimmage at the outset of each play….one that restricts the offense and one that restricts the defense. The area between the two lines….representing the length of the ball as extended to both sidelines….is called the neutral zone….where only the center, the offensive player who snaps the ball, is allowed to have any part of his body in the neutral zone. In order for there to be a legal beginning of a play, a certain number of the players on the offensive team, including certain eligible receivers, must be at, on or within a few inches of their line of scrimmage.
In gridiron football, a lineman is a player who specializes in play at the line of scrimmage…..as 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….as the offensive linemen are supposed to help block the quarterback from getting sacks for a loss or even worse, a fumble….as 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…..which is why they are referred too as The Big Uglies.
NFL Films directed by Steve Sabal have produced the finest films about the game of football in the NFL….as their films are so well produced with such wonderful footage of actual game films….that they can produce a product as enjoyable to watch as this video regarding The Big Uglies and their approach to the line of scrimmage in The Battle for No Man’s Land.