Embracing US Culture and the English Language through American Football

While soccer is the most popular sport in the world, American football is arguably the most popular sport in the USA. In the autumn and early winter there are many Americans who spend their Sundays watching up to 3 football games and cheering for their favorite teams (or against one of their team’s rivals!).

While visiting or living in the States, you’ll hear a fairly substantial recap of Sunday’s games at work or school on Mondays. There are also many sports references and expressions used in everyday language; since American football is so popular it’s no surprise that there are terms from the game that are used as metaphors for other situations.

Here are some examples of terms and expressions that you might hear, either in the weekly summary of games on Mondays or sometimes as metaphors in everyday conversation:

Touchdown: This is the big score in a game when a player either runs into the end zone (the end of the field that is usually painted with the colors and logo of the home team) or catches a pass in the end zone.

First down: In football, this is the first in a series of four downs in which the offense must move forward 10 yards in order to keep possession of the ball. The offense must get from the line of scrimmage to the first down line in 4 plays or less. The line of scrimmage moves each play depending on how far the offense progressed. The first down will be “1st and 10” (the first attempt and they need 10 yards), the second down may be “2nd and 5” (the second attempt and they now only need 5 yards), the third play may be “3rd and 2” (the third attempt and now they are close and only need 2 more yards) and then hopefully (if you’re cheering for the offense) they will convert the 3rd down to start a new set of 4 downs to continue moving forward. If the offense doesn’t go 10 yards in 4 plays or downs, then the other team gets the ball.

To be blind-sided: In American football this is when one team’s players don’t notice a play because their view is blocked. In everyday language, you can use this for any situation when something happens suddenly, you didn’t see it coming beforehand and so you ended up being unprepared.

Fumble: When a football player has control of the ball but then loses control while the play is still in progress, he fumbles the ball and any player on either team can try to pick up the ball to gain control for his team. You can also use this term in conversations outside sports for a situation when someone had control of a situation but then lost it and made a mess of the situation.

To run interference: In football, this is when a player interferes or obstructs the other team so that the ball carrier has a clear path forward. This is also used outside of the football stadium for when someone interferes with a situation so that the person working on the project has a clear path to make progress and is not hindered by someone else.

If you want to participate in the Monday discussions or just understand the many, complicated rules of American football when visiting, studying or working in the US, check out a game on TV or, even better, at a stadium! Go Denver Broncos!mbracing US Culture and the English Language through American Football

While soccer is the most popular sport in the world, American football is arguably the most popular sport in the USA. In the autumn and early winter there are many Americans who spend their Sundays watching up to 3 football games and cheering for one of their favorite teams (or against one of their team’s rivals!).

While visiting or living in the States, you’ll hear a fairly substantial recap of Sunday’s games at work or school on Mondays. There are also many sports references and expressions used in everyday language; since American football is so popular it’s no surprise that there are terms from the game that are used as metaphors for other situations.

Here are some examples of terms and expressions that you might hear, either in the weekly summary of games and plays on Mondays or sometimes as metaphors in everyday conversation:
-Touchdown: This is the big score in a game when a player either runs into the end zone (the end of the field that is usually painted with the colors and logo of the home team) or catches a pass in the end zone.
-First down: In football, this is the first in a series of four downs in which the offense must move forward 10 yards in order to keep possession of the ball. The offense must get from the line of scrimmage to the first down line in 4 plays or less. The line of scrimmage moves each play depending on how far the offense progressed. The first down will be “1st and 10” (the first attempt and they need 10 yards), the second down may be “2nd and 5” (the second attempt and they now only need 5 yards), the third play may be “3rd and 2” (the third attempt and now they are close and only need 2 more yards) and then hopefully (if you’re cheering for the offense) they will convert the 3rd down to start a new set of 4 downs to continue moving forward. If the offense doesn’t go 10 yards in 4 plays or downs, then the other team gets the ball.
-To be blink-sided: In American football this is when one team’s players don’t notice a play because their view is blocked. In everyday language, you can use this for any situation when something happens suddenly, you didn’t see it coming beforehand and so you ended up being unprepared.
-Fumble: When a football player has control of the ball but then loses control while the play is still in progress, he fumbles the ball and any player on either team can try to pick up the ball to gain control for his team. You can also use this term in conversations outside sports for a situation when someone had control of a situation but then lost it and made a mess of the situation.
-To run interference: In football, this is when a player interferes or obstructs the other team so that the ball carrier has a clear path forward. This is also used outside of the football stadium for when someone interferes with a situation so that the person working on the project has a clear path to make progress and is not hindered by someone else.

If you want to participate in the Monday discussions or just understand the many, complicated rules of American football when visiting, studying or working in the US, check out a game on TV or, even better, at a stadium! Go Denver Broncos!
mbracing US Culture and the English Language through American Football

While soccer is the most popular sport in the world, American football is arguably the most popular sport in the USA. In the autumn and early winter there are many Americans who spend their Sundays watching up to 3 football games and cheering for one of their favorite teams (or against one of their team’s rivals!).

While visiting or living in the States, you’ll hear a fairly substantial recap of Sunday’s games at work or school on Mondays. There are also many sports references and expressions used in everyday language; since American football is so popular it’s no surprise that there are terms from the game that are used as metaphors for other situations.

Here are some examples of terms and expressions that you might hear, either in the weekly summary of games and plays on Mondays or sometimes as metaphors in everyday conversation:
-Touchdown: This is the big score in a game when a player either runs into the end zone (the end of the field that is usually painted with the colors and logo of the home team) or catches a pass in the end zone.
-First down: In football, this is the first in a series of four downs in which the offense must move forward 10 yards in order to keep possession of the ball. The offense must get from the line of scrimmage to the first down line in 4 plays or less. The line of scrimmage moves each play depending on how far the offense progressed. The first down will be “1st and 10” (the first attempt and they need 10 yards), the second down may be “2nd and 5” (the second attempt and they now only need 5 yards), the third play may be “3rd and 2” (the third attempt and now they are close and only need 2 more yards) and then hopefully (if you’re cheering for the offense) they will convert the 3rd down to start a new set of 4 downs to continue moving forward. If the offense doesn’t go 10 yards in 4 plays or downs, then the other team gets the ball.
-To be blink-sided: In American football this is when one team’s players don’t notice a play because their view is blocked. In everyday language, you can use this for any situation when something happens suddenly, you didn’t see it coming beforehand and so you ended up being unprepared.
-Fumble: When a football player has control of the ball but then loses control while the play is still in progress, he fumbles the ball and any player on either team can try to pick up the ball to gain control for his team. You can also use this term in conversations outside sports for a situation when someone had control of a situation but then lost it and made a mess of the situation.
-To run interference: In football, this is when a player interferes or obstructs the other team so that the ball carrier has a clear path forward. This is also used outside of the football stadium for when someone interferes with a situation so that the person working on the project has a clear path to make progress and is not hindered by someone else.

If you want to participate in the Monday discussions or just understand the many, complicated rules of American football when visiting, studying or working in the US, check out a game on TV or, even better, at a stadium! Go Denver Broncos!
mbracing US Culture and the English Language through American Football

While soccer is the most popular sport in the world, American football is arguably the most popular sport in the USA. In the autumn and early winter there are many Americans who spend their Sundays watching up to 3 football games and cheering for one of their favorite teams (or against one of their team’s rivals!).

While visiting or living in the States, you’ll hear a fairly substantial recap of Sunday’s games at work or school on Mondays. There are also many sports references and expressions used in everyday language; since American football is so popular it’s no surprise that there are terms from the game that are used as metaphors for other situations.

Here are some examples of terms and expressions that you might hear, either in the weekly summary of games and plays on Mondays or sometimes as metaphors in everyday conversation:
-Touchdown: This is the big score in a game when a player either runs into the end zone (the end of the field that is usually painted with the colors and logo of the home team) or catches a pass in the end zone.
-First down: In football, this is the first in a series of four downs in which the offense must move forward 10 yards in order to keep possession of the ball. The offense must get from the line of scrimmage to the first down line in 4 plays or less. The line of scrimmage moves each play depending on how far the offense progressed. The first down will be “1st and 10” (the first attempt and they need 10 yards), the second down may be “2nd and 5” (the second attempt and they now only need 5 yards), the third play may be “3rd and 2” (the third attempt and now they are close and only need 2 more yards) and then hopefully (if you’re cheering for the offense) they will convert the 3rd down to start a new set of 4 downs to continue moving forward. If the offense doesn’t go 10 yards in 4 plays or downs, then the other team gets the ball.
-To be blink-sided: In American football this is when one team’s players don’t notice a play because their view is blocked. In everyday language, you can use this for any situation when something happens suddenly, you didn’t see it coming beforehand and so you ended up being unprepared.
-Fumble: When a football player has control of the ball but then loses control while the play is still in progress, he fumbles the ball and any player on either team can try to pick up the ball to gain control for his team. You can also use this term in conversations outside sports for a situation when someone had control of a situation but then lost it and made a mess of the situation.
-To run interference: In football, this is when a player interferes or obstructs the other team so that the ball carrier has a clear path forward. This is also used outside of the football stadium for when someone interferes with a situation so that the person working on the project has a clear path to make progress and is not hindered by someone else.

If you want to participate in the Monday discussions or just understand the many, complicated rules of American football when visiting, studying or working in the US, check out a game on TV or, even better, at a stadium! Go Denver Broncos!

16 thoughts on “Embracing US Culture and the English Language through American Football

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