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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 08:53am
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Face Guarding

I know face guarding is not defined in the book, but I hope you all know what I'm talking about. How do you guys determine whether a defender has face guarded or not?

Reason I'm asking is that last Friday we had a deep pass to A1. A1 is being guarded by B1. B1 is facing A1 and as the pass approaches, B1 raises his arms so his palms are facing the pass, and he looks straight up, kinda like a Willie Mays catch. As this is going on, B1 also runs into A1, so we have a flag for DPI. This got our crew into a discussion after the game, as to what we thought was face guarding. The veteran in our crew said you had to look at the hands, meaning that if his palms were facing backwards, he was ok. He also said that if he knocks the pass down, it is not a foul either. I did not agree with him, but thought I'd see what you guys thought. I think it has more to do with whether or not he is looking for the ball.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 09:02am
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Start with the rule. 7-5-10b states:
"Any player hinders an opponent’s vision without making an attempt to
catch, intercept or bat the ball, even though no contact was made."

That's pretty clear, IMO: if the B player has his back to the pass and hinders A's vision, you've got DPI. Running alongside is not a foul; getting the hands up in the face is.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 09:18am
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B1 has to turn to find and make an attempt on the ball.

In your OP, I have DPI.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 09:53am
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Originally Posted by JugglingReferee View Post
In your OP, I have DPI.
Yep, me too. Merely having the ball hit your arm as you're face-guarding doesn't excuse the foul.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 02:23pm
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Just because a DB gets beat doesn't mean he can't make a play on the ball. However, he will almost always keep his hands down until he turns to find the ball.

When you see a beaten DB with hands up and eyes on the receiver, it's usually face-guarding.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 02:50pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KS_Blue View Post
A1 is being guarded by B1. B1 is facing A1 and as the pass approaches, B1 raises his arms so his palms are facing the pass, and he looks straight up, kinda like a Willie Mays catch. As this is going on, B1 also runs into A1, so we have a flag for DPI.
Should we take your word for it that it really was PI by B1? If A1 pulled up and stopped taking a good route to the ball, B1's running into him could've been A1's foul. So we have to infer that that was not the case.

I also disagree that B1 has to first have a view of the ball to avoid face guarding. If A1 put his hands out, B1 could've taken that as an indication of the approach of the ball. Did B1 appear to be putting his hands or arms into the sight line, or closer to where A1's hands were?
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 02:53pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbyron View Post
Start with the rule. 7-5-10b states:
"Any player hinders an opponent’s vision without making an attempt to
catch, intercept or bat the ball, even though no contact was made."

That's pretty clear, IMO: if the B player has his back to the pass and hinders A's vision, you've got DPI. Running alongside is not a foul; getting the hands up in the face is.
But notice that it says "without making an attempt", not "instead of making an attempt", so a player who both hinders an opponent's vision and makes an attempt on the ball is, by the wording of the rule, not in violation. Probably they should reword the rule to apply depending on what the player is primarily doing, rather than what the player is not doing.
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Old Mon Sep 12, 2011, 02:58pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CT1 View Post
Just because a DB gets beat doesn't mean he can't make a play on the ball. However, he will almost always keep his hands down until he turns to find the ball.

When you see a beaten DB with hands up and eyes on the receiver, it's usually face-guarding.
Only if the hands are up in the receiver's face. I see quite often a DB putting his hands in front of the receiver's HANDS - which is competely legal if he doesn't make contact.
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