Photo: Free-photos/Pixabay
Photo: Free-photos/Pixabay

Ask the Ref: Player who loses helmet must cease participation

Q: An offensive lineman lost his helmet during a play last night but continued to aggressively participate in the play. A flag was thrown, but after a five-minute huddle of the officials, it was waved off. Why was this not an infraction, as wasn't he required to cease active participation instantly?" - Frank Armistead, Cumming

A: "Not having seen the play in question, it's difficult to specifically comment on how it was handled by the officials on the field. With that said, Rule 9-6-4-g in the National Federation of High Schools Football rule book states that it is illegal participation for a player whose helmet comes completely off during a down to continue to participate beyond the immediate action in which the player is engaged. I would interpret that as the player must disengage as soon as it's possible to do so. This infraction carries a 15-yard penalty." - Tom Skinner, Georgia Football Officials Association 

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