The Sophie Bowl Charity Flag Football Rules:

Footballs will be provided.

Cleats are allowed but must be rubber. No metal baseball spikes allowed.

Games are played in two 12 minute halves with a running clock.  Clock will stop in last one minute of each half.  5 minute half time.  One (1) timeout per half.

3 players minimum to avoid forfeit.  All games are 5 on 5.  

Coin flip determines possession at the start of each game.

SCORING: TD = 6 points / Extra Point = 1 point (5 yards) or 2 points (10 yards), Safety = 2 points.

All drives & changes of possession (except interceptions) start at the 5 yard line.  

Any ball that hits the ground will be ruled dead. Fumbles or muffs are dead at spot with no change in possession if the ball hits the ground.


Profanity, trash talking, unsportsmanlike conduct or flagrant contact fouls will not be tolerated.  At the discretion of the referee and the tournament director, offending player(s) will be ejected from that game, sit out the next game with possible expulsion from the tournament.

Mercy Rule:   If a team is 19 or more points ahead when the Referee announces the two-minute warning for the second half, the game shall be over.  If a team scores during the last two minutes of the second half causing a score difference of 19 or more points, the game shall be over.

Overtime - If the score is tied at the end of 30 minutes, teams move directly into overtime.  

Coin flip will determine possession 

Each team will get one possession starting at mid-field 

Continue until winner is determined.


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.

Ball must be snapped between legs or off to one side to start play.

All players are eligible to receive passes.

Quarterback has 7 seconds to attempt a pass or the play is ruled dead, ball placed at line of scrimmage.

Offense has 4 plays to cross the mid-field line or score a touchdown.  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.

The Offense may run the ball if the QB hands it off or laterals it to a player in the backfield.  The QB may hand the ball off behind him only.  The player receiving the handoff has the option to pass until he crosses the line of scrimmage.  The 7 second rule is in not in effect after a handoff.  The Defense may rush immediately after a hand off.

When a team is within five yards of a touchdown, they are not allowed to run the ball. They must use a passing play.

MULTIPLE LATERALS ARE ALLOWED behind line of scrimmage.

No flag guarding, including stiff arming.

If player falls down, or if knee touches ground, ball is dead at spot.  The player may not get up and run.

Minimum of two players must be on the line of scrimmage before the ball is snapped. One player can be in motion, but cannot be moving forward before the snap.

The ball is spotted where the ball carrier's feet are when the flag is pulled, not where the ball is.


Interceptions may be run back.

Defensive players have to be one yard off the ball at the snap.

All players who rush the passer must be a minimum of seven yards from the line of scrimmage when the ball is snapped. Any number of players can rush the quarterback. Players not rushing the quarterback may defend on the line of scrimmage

When flags fall off inadvertently, revert to a 2 hand touch between shoulders and knees.

Offensive Penalties: 

False Start - 7 yards and loss of down

Delay of Game - 7 yard penalties and loss of down.

Illegal motion (more than one person moving, etc.) - 7 yards and loss of down.

Offensive pass interference (illegal pick play, pushing off/away defender) - 7 yards and loss of down.

Offensive pass interference (illegal pick play, pushing off/away defender) -- 7 yards and loss of down.

Defensive Penalties:  

Offside - 7 yards and repeat the down.

Pass Interference -- 7 yards and automatic first down.

Illegal contact (holding, blocking, etc.) -- 7 yards and repeat the down.

Illegal rushing (starting rush from inside 7-yard marker) -- 7 yards and repeat the down.

Defensive holding -- 7 yards from the point of the foul.

Rules are subject to change without prior notice and at the discretion of the tournament director.