4 x 4 Flag Football Rules EWU IM 4 x 4 Flag Football Rules https://www.ewu.edu/recreation/campus-recreation/imsports/rules/4-flag-football en-us Thu, 23 Mar 2017 16:27:32 UTC Thu, 23 Mar 2017 16:27:32 UTC mcampitelli@ewu.edu kfrantzich@ewu.edu

4 x 4 Flag Football Rules

EWU IM 4 x 4 Flag Football Rules4x4 flag football, rules


(Revised 1/1/10)

4 x 4 Flag Football Rules

  1. Each team may have a maximum of 6 active players on the roster maximum with 3 players needed to start a game.
  2. Games will consist of one, 20-minute period (running clock, each team has one time out) or 20 points, whichever comes first. Each team will receive 5 points for a touchdown.
  3. The field shall be 40 yards long & 30 yards wide with a 10-yard end-zone. The offensive team will have three downs to score or turn the ball over.
  4. There must be a forward pass beyond the line of scrimmage on each down.
  5. All offensive players must be in a stationary position prior to the snap. There will be no center snap. The passer will begin each play at the line of scrimmage by slapping the ball signifying the start of the play. The 4-second time limit will begin when the passer slaps the ball.
  6. No defensive player may cross the line of scrimmage – No rushing the passer!
  7. NO DOWNFIELD BLOCKING. Once a catch is made, the receiver must run downfield without any blocking help from their teammates.
  8. Offensive penalties will return to the original line of scrimmage and will include loss of down. Defensive penalties will include automatic first down and will be marked at the spot of the foul.
  9. In the case of a tie game at the end of regulation, sudden death overtime will occur.
  10. Play will begin from the 40-yard line after each score or to start the game.
4x4 Flag Football Playing  Field Diagram

4 x 4 Flag Football Penalties

NO DOWNFIELD BLOCKING: Once a catch is made all other offensive players must stop and not get involved with the play downfield.
Penalty: Ball is returned to the line of scrimmage and includes loss of down.

ILLEGAL PROCEDURE: All players must be stationary at the time of the snap (QB slapping the ball). No motion allowed.
Penalty: Ball is returned to the line of scrimmage and includes loss of down.

FLAG GUARDING: Receivers may not cover their flags with their hands, push defenders hand away or stiffarm.
Penalty: Ball is returned to the line of scrimmage and includes loss of down.


  • Offensive - Ball is returned to the line of scrimmage and includes loss of down.
  • Defensive – Ball is placed at the spot of the foul and the down is repeated.

DEFENSIVE HOLDING: The defensive back may not create contact with the receiver at any time. Defenders may not pull a receivers flag belt off before the catch or defensive holding is called.
Penalty: 10-yard penalty from the line of scrimmage and repeat the down.

BALL CARRIER INFRACTIONS: No stiff-arming, no diving to gain yardage, no running over the defender.
Penalty: Ball is returned to the line of scrimmage and includes loss of down.


  • In flag football, it’s where the flag belt is – not where the ball is.
  • Receivers may not leave their feet to gain yardage or stick the ball over the goal line.
  • If a receivers flag belt comes off during their pass route, they can legally make a catch but may not advance the ball.
  • Fumbles are dead at the spot in which they hit the ground.
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