Can a punt in 4th down be the same as a field goal?

No, it is considered a touchback, and the defensive team receives the ball at the twenty yard line. If a punt goes through the uprights, it is a touchback, as was explained in the previous response. Here's why: in order for a field goal to count, the ball must touch the ground just before it is kicked. I wonder if your question comes after seeing some film from an old game. If so, you may be thinking of a drop kick, which looks similar to a punt. In the early days of the NFL (into the 40's & possibly the 50's) the place kick was not used. Instead of hiking the ball to the holder as it is today, the snapper would hike the ball directly to the kicker. The kicker then bounced the ball off the ground either by dropping it (or more purposely bouncing it) so that he could get his foot underneath it and kick the ball throught the uprights. This obviously had a lot of skill associated with it. As a result, the field goal was not as routine as what we see today. The main reason the drop drop kick isn't used anymore is because the shape of the official football changed - it used to be more rounded than it is today. And the odds of making a place kick are much better than a drop kick. My own theory is also that the specialization that began in the late 50's & into the 60's the NFL played a part in that. I don't personally remember single platoon football - that is same players on both offense & defense. But I do remember Chuck Bednarek, the last full-time 2-way player, at the end of his career. Since then platooning has culminated in the use not only of 2-squad football (separate players for offense & defense) but with specialization from specific kick and punt returners all the way down to players who are designated for specific downs (especially 3rd down backs, receivers, pass rushers, etc.) By the way - the drop kick is still a legal play in the NFL. It just isn't used because a place kick is almost automatic. Also, The rule about the ball touching the ground just before being kicked hasn't changed - I believe that's why there's no tee allowed for field goals in the NFL. This was an excellent answer to the original question. For modern reference, watch some rugby, the sport whence American football originates. Drop kicks are used in several aspects of rugby, and a drop kick for goal taken from the field of play is sometimes referred to as a "field goal" (although more commonly, "drop goal"). Of course, the rugby ball is rounder, more in the shape of the original footballs described by the other answerer above. In the last few weeks of the season Doug Flutie actually attempted and was successful on a drop kick. Go figure. No one could believe it. In rugby, the ball is dropped, then kicked as it is in contact with the ground. The kicker does not allow the ball to bounce. Thus it is in (roughly) the same position as for a place kick. If American Footballers used this method, then the shape of the ball (less rounded, more cigar-shaped) would not matter. no not at all but in ncaa rules if a punt is fair caught then a team can put the ball on a tee and try a field goal