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Facemask Penalty in Football




What is a Facemask Penalty?

The Facemask penalty can be called on the offense, defense, and special teams. It is called when one player takes hold of the facemask of another player while attempting to tackle or block.


Number of Yards

There is a 15 yard penalty in both the NFL and College Football. If the penalty is committed by the defense, the offense is automatically awarded a first down.


The Signal

When signaling the Facemask penalty the referee will make a fist with one hand and raise it in front of their face, making a downward pulling motion as if they were tugging on the facemask.