American Football and Rugby are two very popular sports that bring together many fans on both sides. Despite their similarity, there is a big difference between the two disciplines. Apart from their creations and popularities, the difference extends to several points.
Creation and geographical coverage
Rugby was born in 1963 and already had its own rules of the game, it now extends to all five continents and an international competition is organised after four years.
American Football was born in 1967 and it took several years for its rules to be defined. It is little known and is more common in Canada and the United States.
The equipment and the ball
Rugby players wear soft thigh protection and soft helmets, but the latter is not mandatory.
In American Football, the wearing of protective gear is mandatory. Helmets, shoulder pads, knee and elbow pads are all rigid.
Despite the shape of the balloon, there is a difference between the two
In Rugby the balloon is bigger and weighs 450 grams
In American Football the ball is smaller and weighs only 200 grams
The rules of the game for Rugby and American Football
The rules of the game between American Football and Rugby are not identical, there are several differences
In Rugby, passes can only be made backwards and to the side and a forward pass is a foul. The handing over of the ball to a teammate is not considered a foul, it is a pass. The game is played in two stages, 40 minutes each. The lock is only made on the player carrying the ball.
In American Football, the passes can be made forward but only if the pitcher is behind the line of engagement (the scrimmage). Blockages can be made on other players but tackling is not allowed, only the player carrying the ball must be knocked down. The American Football game takes place in 4 games of 15 minutes each
The formation of the teams is different between the 2 sports
A Rugby team is composed of players 15 made up of attackers and defenders. Substitutions are limited and can be made up to 8 times during a match.
In American Football, a team is made up of a large number of players and each player has his own speciality, he is either an attacker or a defender. There is therefore a team of attackers and a team of defenders. Each team has 11 players on the field and can have up to 53 players in its squad, replacements are unlimited.
The playing surface
The difference between these two disciplines is also present in the field
In Rugby, the playing surface is 150 × 90 metres, the areas and marks on the surface are quite different. The poles have the shape of an « H » and a crossbar that connects them is placed 3 metres above the ground.
In American Football, the playing surface is 110 × 49 metres. The poles have the shape of « Y » except that the bars are parallel and are 3,048 meters above the ground.
The points in these two sports
Each sport has presented its criteria for the validation of points
In Rugby, the Trial is worth 5 points, the Conversion is worth 2 points, the Drop Kick and the Penalty Kick 3 points
In American Football, we have Touchdown which is worth 6 points, Safty is worth 2 points, drop kick is worth 3 points, Field Goal is worth 3 points and Exta Point is worth (1 or 2 points)
Rugby and American Football are two very different sports. Despite their obvious difference, many people still cannot tell the difference between the two disciplines.