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Rules for Field Goal Kicking & Pads in High School Football

Rules for field goal kicking and pads in high school football are designed to keep your kids safe while on the field, as well as to make their gear uniform. Field goal rules in high school differ from those of collegiate and professional football because kickers may use a tee in select situations.

Pad Rules

According to the National Federation of State High School Associations rule book, each player on the field must wear hip pads and tailbone protectors. Players may not alter the pads in any way from the way they were manufactured. They also must wear knee pads, half an inch thick, in all games. While all players must wear shoulder pads, a field goal kicker may wear a smaller-size pair of pads because he encounters little or no physical contact during a game.

Kicking Tee Rule

If you are a high school field goal kicker, you are allowed to kick field goals with the assistance of a tee. The tee, which you can use in place of a holder, can be no more than 1 inch high. This differs from professional and collegiate football rules in that a kicker can kick the ball only with a holder in both of those settings. Kicking off a tee provides you with more stability and consistency.

Field Goal Scoring Rule

A successful field goal in high school football results in the addition of three points to your team's score. A missed field goal occurs when you kick the ball either to the left or right of the goal posts, or when you kick the ball too short to pass through the posts. After a touchdown, the kicker must put the ball through the goal posts, from a short distance, to score an additional point for his team.

Missed Field Goal

If you miss a field goal attempt and the ball goes out of bounds, the opposing team takes possession of the ball at the point from which you kicked. If you miss a field goal and a defender catches the ball while in-bounds, he may return the ball by running up-field for whatever yardage he can gain before he is tackled or his forward progress is stopped.

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About the Author

Jason Aberdeene has been a freelance writer since 2008. His articles have appeared in the "UCSD Guardian" and on various websites, specializing in teen health. An assistant at Kagan Physical Therapy since 2009, Aberdeene has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego.

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