Ask the Ref: Dividing up receiving yardage on a hook-and-ladder play

Q: Let's say you run a hook-and-ladder type play. Does the first receiver get all the yards, or does the one who has the ball last get the yards? And does the last runner get rushing yards? - Frank Howard, Alpharetta

A: "On a hook-and-ladder play, the initial receiver gets a reception and receiving yards from the line of scrimmage to the point where the ball is caught by the second receiver. The second 'receiver' gets receiving yards from the point where he possessed the ball to where the play ends, but he does not get a reception.

"Example: Line of scrimmage is the A20. QB Adams throws a completed pass to Adele at the A30. Adele then 'laterals' the ball - actually, the official name for this is a backward pass - to teammate Able at the A28, and Able is tackled at the 50.

Adams - 1 pass completed for 30 yards (from the A20 to the 50)

Adele - 1 reception, 8 receiving yards (from the A20 to the A28, the point where Able received the ball)

Able - 0 receptions, 22 yards receiving (from the A28 to the A50)

"The yards on the play will be classified under the initial play. Since this was a pass play, there will not be any rushing yards on the play, only receiving yards." - Joe Sturniolo, statistician for the Atlanta Falcons

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