In gridiron football, a triple-threat man is a player who excels at all three of the skills of running, passing, and kicking. In modern usage, such a player would be referred to as a utility player.
Triple-threat men were the norm in the early days of football, as substitution rules were stringent. Thus, in addition to the need for passing, running, and kicking skills, they were also required to play defense. As injury awareness grew and substitution rules loosened, teams shifted to kicking specialists, which made the triple-threat man obsolete. One of the last triple-threat men in professional football was George Blanda, a quarterback and kicker who last played for the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League in 1975. Danny White, a quarterback and punter, retired in 1989. Since then, non-specialists have placekicked only extremely infrequently in the NFL. One instance occurred when Doug Flutie —also adept at both running and passing as a "scrambling" quarterback— drop kicked an extra point in 2006 during the last play of his career. Danny White of the Dallas Cowboys was the last non-specialist to kick on a regular basis, as he served as the team's starting quarterback and punter from 1980 until 1984, after several years as backup to Roger Staubach. There are, however, still dual-threat quarterbacks and wildcat halfbacks, who can both run and pass. A quarterback who played wide receiver in high school or college may sparingly catch passes or be converted into a wide receiver who occasionally passes.
For over forty years the NFL single-season scoring record was held by a triple-threat man, Green Bay Packers Hall of Famer Paul Hornung. Hornung set a record of 176 points in 1960 by scoring fifteen touchdowns, kicking forty-one extra points, and also kicking fifteen field goals.
Saint Louis University's Bradbury Robinson, who threw the first legal forward pass in football history in 1906, was undoubtedly[ citation needed ] the first "triple-threat man".[ citation needed ] He was the Blue and White's premier passer and sportswriters of the era reported that he "excelled" as a kicker and was an "electrifying" runner.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch sportswriter Ed Wray (John Edward Wray, 1873–1961)covered SLU football throughout Robinson's career. In an October 1947 column, Wray declared that the title of "first triple-threat man" belonged to Robinson "because throughout the 1906 season (St. Louis coach Eddie Cochems) used Robinson to pass, kick and run the ball... He was an A1 punter, too... And run!... This three way use of Robby added greatly to the team's offensive deception."
Referee Horatio B. Hackett of West Point was amazed by Robinson’s passing, having first witnessed his play at a St. Louis game in 1906. Hackett was a recognized expert, having officiated major college games for three decades and as a member of football's rules committee.In 1932, The Minneapolis Star quoted Major Hackett as saying of Robinson's passing: "Whew, that chap is a wonder! He beats anything I ever saw. He looks as though 40 yards is dead for him, and he's got accuracy with it."
Hall of Fame coach David M. Nelson (1920–1991) wrote that “St. Louis had a great passer in Brad Robinson.”In his book The Anatomy of a Game: Football, the Rules, and the Men Who Made the Game, Nelson marveled that Robinson threw a 67-yard pass in the 1906 season. “Considering the size, shape and weight of the ball”, Nelson concluded, such a pass was “extraordinary”.
Sports historian John Sayle Wattersonagreed. In his book, College Football: History, Spectacle, Controversy, he described Robinson's long pass as "truly a breathtaking achievement". Professor Watterson added that, "Robinson ended up using passes that ranged from thirty to more than forty yards with devastating efficiency".
Robinson was also the Blue & White's principal kicker. One sports journalist of the time opined that, "of the local kickers, Robinson of St. Louis easily excels all others. He is good for at least 45 yards every time he puts his toe to the ball and some of his punts have gone 60 yards."
Robinson's prowess as a ballcarrier was particularly noted by a Columbia, Missouri reporter after a November 11, 1904, victory over the University of Missouri: "Robinson and (John) Kinney, the halfbacks of the visiting team were the fastest seen here in years and the Tigers seemed unable to stop them." Another writer at the game observed that Robinson's "offensive play was fast and in running back punts he gained much ground for his team, besides tackling well while on defensive." The St. Louis Globe-Democrat added, "Robinson's return of punts electrified the spectators time and time again. He was always good for a gain of 20 yards or more."
On November 24, 1906, Yale's Paul Veeder completed a 20 to 30-yard pass in a 6-0 win over Harvard.As an outstanding runner and Yale's kicking specialist during his career, Veeder may have assumed the mantle of "triple threat" that Saturday before a crowd of some 32,000 at New Haven.
The development of a true triple-threat man among the Eastern powers awaited their adoption of the forward pass as it had been pioneered at Saint Louis. Knute Rockne, who popularized the forward pass at Notre Dame in the mid-1910s, observed, “One would have thought that so effective a play would have been instantly copied and become the vogue. The East, however, had not learned much or cared much about Midwest and Western football. Indeed, the East scarcely realized that football existed beyond the Alleghanies…”.
Coach Nelson writes that the concept really took hold in 1912 when Carlisle coach Pop Warner "sprang his single wing or 'Carlisle' formation on the football world, and the triple-threat back was born."
The term "triple threat" was used frequently by sportswriters in the 1920s and thereafter. A 1920 New York Times article reports that such a player
Canadian football is a sport played in Canada in which two teams of 12 players each compete for territorial control of a field of play 110 yards (101 m) long and 65 yards (59 m) wide attempting to advance a pointed oval-shaped ball into the opposing team's scoring area.
In several forms of football a forward pass is a throwing of the ball in the direction that the offensive team is trying to move, towards the defensive team's goal line. The forward pass is one of the main distinguishers between gridiron football in which the play is legal and widespread, and rugby football from which the North American games evolved, in which the play is illegal.
The quarterback, colloquially known as the "signal caller", is a position in gridiron football. Quarterbacks are members of the offensive team and line up directly behind the offensive line. In modern American football, the quarterback is usually considered the leader of the offensive team, and is often responsible for calling the play in the huddle. The quarterback also touches the ball on every offensive play, and is the offensive player that almost always throws forward passes. When the QB is tackled behind the line of scrimmage, it is called a sack.
In gridiron football, the holder is the player who receives the snap from the long snapper during field goal or extra point attempts made by the placekicker. The holder is set on one knee seven yards behind the line-of-scrimmage. Before the play begins he places the hand which is closest to the place kicker on the ground in a location designated by the kickers foot, with his forward hand ready to receive the snap. After receiving the snap, the holder will place the football on the turf, or block, ideally with the laces facing the uprights and the ball accurately placed where the back hand was initially, then balancing the ball with one or two fingers until the ball is kicked.
A trick play, also known as a gadget play, gimmick play or trickeration, is a play in gridiron football that uses deception and unorthodox tactics to fool the opposing team. A trick play is often risky, offering the potential for a large gain or a touchdown if it is successful, but with the chance of a significant loss of yards or a turnover if not. Trick plays are rarely used not only because of the riskiness, but also to maintain the element of surprise for when they are used.
A comparison of American football and rugby union is possible because of the games' shared origins, despite their dissimilarities.
Bradbury Norton Robinson Jr. was a pioneering American football player, physician, nutritionist, conservationist and local politician. He played college football at the University of Wisconsin in 1903 and at Saint Louis University from 1904 to 1907. In 1904, through personal connections to Wisconsin governor Robert M. La Follette, Sr. and his wife, Belle Case, Robinson learned of calls for reforms to the game of football from President Theodore Roosevelt, and began to develop tactics for passing. After moving to Saint Louis University, Robinson threw the first legal forward pass in the history of American football on September 5, 1906, at a game at Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin. He became the sport's first triple threat man, excelling at running, passing, and kicking. He was also a member of St. Louis' "Olympic World's Champions" football team in 1904.
Edward Bulwer Cochems was an American football player and coach. He played football for the University of Wisconsin from 1898 to 1901 and was the head football coach at North Dakota Agricultural College—now known as North Dakota State University (1902–1903), Clemson University (1905), Saint Louis University (1906–1908), and the University of Maine (1914). During his three years at Saint Louis, he was the first football coach to build an offense around the forward pass, which became a legal play in the 1906 college football season. Using the forward pass, Cochems' 1906 team compiled an undefeated 11–0 record, led the nation in scoring, and outscored opponents by a combined score of 407 to 11. He is considered by some to be the "father of the forward pass" in American football.
In college football, the Flea Kicker was a notable play executed by the Nebraska Cornhuskers against the Missouri Tigers on November 8, 1997 that sent the game into overtime and resulted in a win for the Cornhuskers who went on to share the NCAA Division I-A National Championship with the Michigan Wolverines. The final minutes of the game were seen by many people on ABC, after other regional games ended.
The 1906 college football season was the first in which the forward pass was permitted. Although there was no clear cut national championship, there were two teams that had won all nine of their games as the 1906 season drew to a close, the Princeton Tigers and the Yale Bulldogs, and on November 17, 1906, they played to a 0–0 tie. St. Louis University finished at 11–0–0. The Helms Athletic Foundation, founded in 1936, declared retroactively that Princeton had been the best college football team of 1906. Other selectors recognized Yale as the national champions for 1906.
In gridiron football, roughing the kicker is an action in which a defender, having missed an attempt to block a kick, tackles the kicker or otherwise runs into the kicker in a way that might injure the kicker or his vulnerable extended kicking leg. This protection is also extended to the holder of a place kick. It is a separate penalty from "running into the kicker."
Paul Lansing Veeder was an All-American football player for Yale University. Veeder played halfback, fullback, quarterback and punter for the Yale Bulldogs from 1904–1906 and was selected as an All-American in 1906.
In gridiron football, a punt is a kick performed by dropping the ball from the hands and then kicking the ball before it hits the ground. The most common use of this tactic is to punt the ball downfield to the opposing team, usually on the final down, with the hope of giving the receiving team a field position that is more advantageous to the kicking team when possession changes. The result of a typical punt, barring any penalties or extraordinary circumstances, is a first down for the receiving team. A punt is not to be confused with a drop kick, a kick after the ball hits the ground, now rare in both American and Canadian football.
Clarence F. Alcott was an American football player, coach and investment banker. He was selected as an All-American end in both 1906 and 1907.
The 1905 Washburn vs. Fairmount football game was a college football game between Fairmount College and the Washburn Ichabods played on December 25, 1905, in Wichita, Kansas. It marked the first experiment with the forward pass and with the ten-yard requirement for first downs. Despite the game's Christmas Day playing date, It is unclear if the game was considered "regular season", "post season", or "exhibition" in classification.
Louis Matthew Gilbert was an American football player. He played at the halfback position for the Michigan Wolverines football teams from 1925 to 1927. He was selected as a first-team All-Big Ten Conference player in 1927 and was selected by Fielding H. Yost in 1941 as the greatest punter of all time.
The 1978 Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl game was a post-season college football bowl game between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Stanford Cardinals, and was played on December 31, 1978, at the Houston Astrodome in Houston, Texas. It was the twentieth edition of the Bluebonnet Bowl. Stanford overcame a 22–0 third quarter deficit and won the game, 25–22.
In American football, a spiral is the continuous lateral rotation of the football following its release from the hand of a passer or foot of a punter.
The 1906 Saint Louis Blue and White football team was an American football team that represented Saint Louis University as an independent during the 1906 college football season. In its first season under head coach Eddie Cochems, the team compiled a perfect 11–0 record and outscored opponents by a total of 407 to 11.
The Double Doink was a blocked game-winning field goal attempt by Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey in the National Football League's (NFL's) 2018 NFC Wild Card game. Parkey's 43-yard field goal attempt against the Philadelphia Eagles was partially blocked, hit the left upright, then bounced off the crossbar and fell to the end zone, no good. The sixth-seeded Eagles won the game over the third-seeded Bears, 16–15, at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois, and advanced to the Divisional playoff round.
|Positions in American football and Canadian football|
|Offense (Skill position)||Defense||Special teams|
|Linemen||Guard, Tackle, Center||Linemen||Tackle, End, Edge rusher||Kicking players||Placekicker, Punter, Kickoff specialist|
|Quarterback (Dual-threat, Game manager, System)||Linebacker||Snapping||Long snapper, Holder|
|Backs||Halfback/Tailback (Triple-threat, Change of pace), Fullback, H-back, Wingback||Backs||Cornerback, Safety, Halfback, Nickelback, Dimeback||Returning||Punt returner, Kick returner, Jammer, Upman|
|Receivers||Wide receiver (Eligible), Tight end, Slotback, End||Tackling||Gunner, Upback, Utility|
|Formations (List) — Nomenclature — Strategy|