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Columbia Youth Football League

Columbia Youth Football League

3rd & 4th Grade Tackle Football Rules

2019 CYFL 8-Man Tackle Football Rules

(Under Review/Subject to change)


All rules follow 11-man football rules with the exceptions below:


1.            Player age: division will consist of teams comprised of 3rd and 4th grade players.

2.            Field size: games will be played on an 80 by 40 yard field.

3.            Minimum roster size for 8-man football is 10 players needed to form a formal squad.


4.            The game will consist of four (4) 15 minute quarters.

5.            Half-time will be 15 minutes and End of Quarters will be 5 minutes

6.            The game clock will not stop except for time-outs and/or injuries

7.            The last 2 minutes of each half will be played like regular football (clock only stops on incomplete passes, running out of bounds, time out etc.)

8.            Each team will get 2 time outs per half and they cannot be carried over

9.            Play Clock is 40 seconds.  Time starts once the ball is placed by the referee.

Special teams 

10.         No punts are allowed: If a punt is declared, the ball will be advanced 25 yards from spot of the ball, then a change of position.

11.         No kickoffs are allowed: Teams start on the 20 yard line on an 80 yard field at beginning of halves, after scoring, etc.

12.         Extra point attempt is allowed after a touchdown: Kicked extra points with no be contested with any defensive rush... 10 second countdown until ball must be kicked!

13.         Field goal allowed is allowed: Field goal attempt will not be contested with any defensive rush... 10 second COUNTDOWNS until ball must be kicked!


14.         Td = 6 points

15.         Extra points/kicking extra-point = 2 points no rushing allowed / see rule 12

16.         Running or passing extra point = 1 point

17.         Field goals = 3 points no rushing allowed / see rule 13


Lineman stance 

18.         Defensive lineman can be in 3-point or 4-point stance.  Offensive lineman can be in 2-point or 3-point stance.

19.         No one can line up directly in front of the center. Defensive player helmet cannot be in front of center, includes shading the center’s shoulder pad.  Center should be free and clear of defensive opponent.  Defensive players are otherwise allowed in “A” gaps, if they do not shade center in any way.

20.         Defense maybe have 2 down lineman.  One over each guard.   All other players in the box, must be 3 yards off the ball.  Only time this will not apply is when the ball is inside the 5 yard line.



21.         At least 5 offensive players will be on the line of scrimmage at the start of snap

22.         Only players at the right and left ends of the line are eligible to receive passes.

23.         No Trips Formations.

24.         No Blitzing



25.         All backs are eligible pass receivers (if) they are legally behind the line of scrimmage at the snap

26.         The passer cannot catch his own pass

27.         Only direct running is allowed in 8-man football (if you are on the line, you can’t receive a hand- off)

28.         The tackles cannot run the ball (they are part of the line of scrimmage)

29.         All fumbles are live and can be recovered (behind the line and in from of the line) as in regular football

Coaches on field 

30.         One (1) coach from each team are permitted to be on the filed with the team. Once the center touches the ball all on-field coaching must stop. All coaches must stand 20 yds behind the line of scrimmage, behind their own team. 


31.         Before the snap dead ball penalty enforced 5 yard penalty replay down after the snap

32.         Offence interference 5 yard penalty from the line of scrimmage loss of down

33.         Defense interference 5 yard penalty from end of run or line of scrimmage, automatic first down

34.         Penalty yardages should be 5 or 10 yards on 80 yard field (15 yard penalties no allowed on 80 yard field)

Series or downs (1st down and zone to go ) 

35.         Each team will have four (4) consecutive downs to advance the ball into the next zone (10 yards) or to score a touchdown

36.         Once a team advances to the zone (10 yards) it will result in a 1st down and a new series of downs

37.         The ball will be placed in the center of the field after each down by the spotter/clock keeper

38.         A team failing to move the ball into the next zone (1st down) will lose possession. The opposing team will take over at the point where the ball is declared dead and will start it’s series of downs from that point

Spread rule 

39.         When one team is 28 points or more ahead at any point in the game

40.         The clock will not stop: time-outs, scores, or the last two minutes of the half or game

41.         Only for injuries or medical attention (will clock stop)

42.         Failure to comply will result in 5-yard penalty from the line of scrimmage for each instance

Offense (when in spread-rule) 

43.         The team that is ahead by 28 points (or more) must run the ball between the tackles and cannot pass the ball at all.

44.         However, you will be allowed to split one offensive back no more than five (5) yards outside the tight end.

45.         The team that is behind 28 point or more will start all offensive series on the 10-yard line going in for the remainder of the game even if the score goes under the 28 point spread

46.         Once the game enters the spread-rule it will remain in spread-rule for the remainder of the game.


Columbia Youth Football League
PO Box 7052 
Columbia, Missouri 65202

Email: [email protected]

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