When you know all of the football field positions, it is much easier to follow the game. It does not matter who has possession of the ball, there are always 11 men on the field for each of the two teams. It is possible to have less than eleven men and not get penalized, however having more than eleven on the field will result in a penalty.
- There are eleven offensive football field positions. They include the quarterback, running backs, receivers and linemen. Most teams use five offensive linemen, including one center, two guards and two tackles. Depending on the offense, there can be many different combinations of running backs and receivers. Another offensive position is tight end, who can either be a receiver or a blocker on any given play.
- There are also eleven defensive football field positions. They include the defensive linemen, linebackers, cornerbacks and safeties. The defensive line may have a nose tackle, or two defensive tackles and two defensive ends. There is usually a middle linebacker, and two outside linebackers. Two players line up at cornerback and safety, or more depending on the defensive pass coverage scheme.
- On extra points and field goals, both teams use eleven players at various football field positions. The offensive team has a kicker and a player to hold the ball during the kick, a center who snaps the ball, as well as other linemen and blockers. The defensive team places their eleven men along the line of scrimmage, to try and break through and block the kick.
- Both teams also use eleven men on kickoffs and punts. On kickoffs the defensive team has a kicker, and ten other players lined up at different football field positions, to try and tackle the offensive return man. The offensive team usually has two returners and nine blockers at various football field positions.