A lot of these aren’t much of a surprise to most spring football fans. What we’re seeing with the UFL ruleset is a nice balance between what we’ve seen with the USFL and XFL over the past two seasons.
There have been hints on what fans could expect out of the rules from various interviews in the lead-up to this announcement.
For instance, last week Graham Gwaltney (@UFLUpdate) reported that the UFL would be utilizing the two foot rule. This is in contrast to the XFL rule which allowed only foot inbounds for a complete pass.
We’re seeing the league adopt the USFL kickoff, whereas we’ll see the XFL version of the PAT.
Around The UFL went in-depth on all the UFL rule changes slated for the 2024 season. This could give you some better insight as to what to expect on the field this season.
What UFL rules do you like the most? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below or join the conversation on Discord.
You can read the full press release below:
United Football League Rules for 2024 Announced
ARLINGTON, TX — — The United Football League (UFL) will continue to build on the innovation of both the XFL and USFL with its rules for the 2024 season.
The UFL has adopted several innovative rules from both previous leagues to deliver an exciting, fast-paced game with plenty of action.
The UFL has adopted the XFL’s points after-touchdown options. Kickoffs will resemble the USFL’s more traditional-style play, with a modification moving the kickoff line back to the 20-yard line.
Slight modifications have been made to the rules that overlapped, including alternate possession options in the fourth quarter. Both leagues implemented opportunities in 2023 for teams that are trailing or if the scores are tied. In 2024, the UFL will offer a 4th-and-12 from the 28-yard line.
2024 UFL RULES HIGHLIGHTS
Points After Touchdown
Teams will have three scrimmage play (run/pass) options following a touchdown.
Kickoffs will look like more traditional college/NFL kickoffs but will take place from the 20-yard line of the kicking team. A kickoff out of bounds will give possession to the receiving team 30 yards from the spot of the kickoff or at the spot where the ball went out of bounds. A kickoff that is untouched by the receiving team may only be recovered by the kicking team up to 20 yards from the spot of the kick.
Other Kicking/Touchback Rules
All touchbacks on kicks (punts or kickoffs) will be placed at the receiving team’s 25-yard line. Any punt that goes out of bounds inside the receiving team’s 25-yard line will be considered a touchback and placed at the 25-yard line. Non-kicking touchbacks will also be placed at the 25-yard line.
Alternate Possession Option
While onside kicks are allowed at any time during the game, teams will have an alternate option to retain possession in the fourth quarter. If a team is tied or behind during the fourth quarter, it may elect to retain possession after a score with a 4th-and-12 from its own 28-yard line.
Two Forward Passes
Teams will be allowed, as they were in both leagues last season, to throw two forward passes on one play. The ball cannot cross the line of scrimmage at any time prior to the second forward pass being thrown.
A completed catch or interception is defined as a player securing control of the ball prior to the ball touching the ground; and touching the ground inbounds with both feet or with any part of his body other than his hands.
Defensive Pass Interference
Defensive pass interference will result in a 15-yard penalty or a spot foul if the foul occurred less than 15 yards downfield. Intentional defensive pass interference will result in a spot foul if it is beyond 15 yards downfield.
Designated members of the officiating department may stop a game at any time before the ball is next legally put in play to review a play if the play is reviewable, there is reasonable evidence to believe an error was made in the initial ruling and it would have a direct, competitive impact on the game. These reviews will be made from a secure location separate from the site of the game. Any call or non-call related to player safety is also subject to review at any point during the game, as well as any officiating ruling in the last five minutes of the fourth quarter or overtime that is obviously incorrect and will have a significant impact on the outcome of the game.
Each coach may challenge any ruling, including fouls or potential fouls, one time during the course of a contest, provided the team has a timeout remaining. A successful challenge will not result in a loss of a timeout, while the timeout is lost if the challenge is unsuccessful.
Overtime will consist of alternating attempts to score from the opponent’s 5-yard line with no kicks allowed. It will be a best-of-three format or until a winner has been determined.
The United Football League (UFL) is set to launch as the premier spring football platform, formed by the merging of the XFL and USFL in 2024. The UFL has eight teams in Arlington (TX), Birmingham (AL), Detroit (MI), Houston (TX), San Antonio (TX), Memphis (TN), St. Louis (MO), and Washington D.C.