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Why is spiking the football to stop the clock not the same as Intentional grounding to avoid a sack?

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2009-04-27 18:17:21
2009-04-27 18:17:21

The QB is trying to avoid losing yardage. Spiking the ball you don't lose yards.

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I don't remember the exact year the rules were modified to allow spiking the football to stop the clock but the modification was made to allow teams a better chance to score at the end of a half/game when they are out of timeouts. The difference in the spiking vs. intentional grounding rule is the quarterback, when spiking, must take the snap from center and immediately spike the ball into the ground. The rule determines that the quarterback is doing this to stop the clock as opposed to the intentional grounding rule where the quarterback is throwing the ball to an area where there are no eligible receivers for the sole purpose of not losing yardage by being sacked.

== == Because the intent of the play is not to unfairly deprive the defense of an opportunity -- it's merely to stop the clock. Keep in mind, too, that spiking the ball essentially carries its own self-imposed penalty, since it causes the offense to burn a down.

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No, because the quarterback still has a desinated reciever. Disagree. A defining characteristic of intentional grounding is that the passer has to be trying to avoid an imminent loss of yardage, and there can be no receiver in the vicinity. When a passer spikes the ball, neither stipulation occurs. Eligible receivers are in the vicinity, and there's no attempt to avoid a loss of yardage. Think about it this way: Spiking to stop the clock carries its own built-in penalty, because the offense has to use up one of its downs.

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For intentional grounding to occur, the passer has to be making a deliberate effort to avoid an imminent loss of yardage, and there can be no eligible receiver in the vicinity. When a quarterback clocks the ball, neither scenario holds true. If you think about it, spiking the ball carries its own built-in penalty: It causes the offense to burn one of its downs.

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