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Football Terms – The Players

Center – refers to a player who is found in the midst of an offensive line. The center snaps the ball to the quarterback and then protect the quarterback from opposing defenders

Cornerback (CB) – a CB mainly lines up from a wide receiver as a defensive player to intercept/ break a pass or contain a rusher

Defensive back (DB) – refers to cornerbacks and safeties in a game

Defensive end (DE) – refers to a defensive player line up at the end of a defensive line with the aim of sacking or pressuring the opposing QB

Defensive tackle (DT) – this refers to a defensive player whose main task is to line up inside the defensive line so that they can contain any rushing plays

Eligible receiver – this is a term that used to refer to either of the opponents who can legally catch a forward pass

Free safety (FS) – this defensive player who is positioned deep behind the scrimmage line. The main task of the FS is to defend passes and tackling around the area he/she covers

Front seven – refers to linebackers and defensive linemen in a game

Fullback (FB) – a fullback lays offensively and he is positioned behind the quarterback (QB). In most cases, a FB tends to be a blocker rather than a rusher

Guard (G) – this offensive lineman is inside either on the right or left side. Normally, each side of the tackle should have a guard

Halfback (HB) – this is another name that’s used to refer to a fullback or a running back

Holder – refers to the player that holds the ball upright for a place kick during a game

Interior offensive line – this term refers to the guards and the center

Kicker (K) – refers to the player who takes kickoffs and kicks field goals

Kick returner – refers to a player whose main role is to catch kickoffs and run the ball back upfield

Linebacker (LB) – this is a defensive player who is supposed to stand behind the defensive linemen. A line backer should be able to rush the passer, tackle and drop back to aid in pass protection

Lineman – this can either refer to either a defensive or an offensive player. However, this is one of the players who line up near the ball along scrimmage line

Long snapper (LS) – the player is a specialist in snapping the ball back to the kicker either for punts or field goal attempts

Nickel back or nickel corner – refers to a 5th defensive back who is brought in to offer added pass protection

Nose tackle – on a three man line, a nose tackle is a player who is positioned up against the opposite the center. He is usually defensive

Punter (P) – this is a player who specializes in punting the ball downfield

Quarterback (QB) – this offensive player is mainly positioned behind the center. A QB take snaps and then direct the play

Running back (RB) – also known as a tailback, a running back usually line up, beside or behind a quarterback. The player can block when protecting the quarterback, become a receiver and catch the ball or run the ball from the backfield

Safety – you can have a strong safety (SS) or a free safety (FS) in a game. A strong safety stop runs and defends against the backs. On the other hand, free safety usually covers the quarterback

Scatback – this is a running back who is usually fast and elusive

Secondary – refers to safeties and cornerbacks in the backfield

Slot receiver – this is a wide receiver who line up in the slot

Special teams – this is a unit of a team that’s on the field during free kicks, goal attempts, kickoffs, and punts

Tight end (TE) – this offensive player can play as an additional receiver or a blocker because of the player line up at the extreme end of an offensive

Wide receiver (WR) – the player is offensive and he is positioned wide of the scrimmage. The main task of a WR is to catch the ball

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Mark is the founder and editor of XFL News Hub. The site was started in January of 2018, within days of the announced return of the XFL. Contact him directly by emailing

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Susan Susan

    September 7, 2019 at 4:10 pm

    Great information on position players! My grandson played college ball and it finally sinked in what position he played after a couple of seasons. Football is hard for some of us when you “had” no interest in learning the game.
    GO XFL!!!!

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