It's basically for safety, so the people playing do not get hurt. Without pads there would be injuries all the time, and maybe even deaths, and its hard to find good football players, but mainly it's for safety and to keep them secure.
Yes, I play football at the Pro level and there are many skilled position players as well as special teams players that only wear shoulder pads and helmets.. In practice we sometimes only wear shoulder pads and helmets we call it pro-pads we also wear this during training camp a lot and when we are not going to hit full speed.
A lot of players don't wear pads in their pants, because they believe it will slow them down; whether it be speed, agility, or simply, reaction time. This is why so many players object to the NFL's new rule in the 2013 season, stating that it will become mandatory for players to wear thigh and knee pads. Personally, I agree with the players. In college, I wore Yeh smallest(youth) pads I could find, and during my stint in arena and semi-pro, I NEVER wore them... So it kind of makes sense to me.
2 knee pads, 2 thigh pads,gurdle 2 on your hip 1 on ur tailbone,shoulder pads,mouthguards,cleats.People your forgeting the cup very important Here's what I did when I played football;JockstrapCup(always wear a cup when playing football or other sports,belive me)GirdlePantsShoulder PadsJerseyCleatsand Helmet.pads people can wear.....ankle brace(optional) knee brace(optional) rib cage(optional)cleats.Cup(optional) Back Plate (optional)
It depends a little on the player and position, but there are 10 basic pieces of equipment helmet, shoulder pads, a tailbone pad, 2 hip pads, 2 thigh pads, 2 knee pads, and a cup. Mouthguards are pretty much necessary, but not really a pad. Outside of that some players also opt to wear flack jackets, back and/or sternum plates, neck rolls, forearm pads. Some players do not wear a cup. (As a point of reference, virtually every major league baseball player wears a cup, while most NFL players do not.)
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