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Is a muffed punt return a Fumble?

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STL vs. CAR

 

S macdonald muffs punt recovered by brad hoover.

 

NFL game stats show it as lost fumble.

 

I agree since it was touched by receiving team and therefore a live ball and change of possession by recovering team (CAR).

 

Any NFL rules to support this?

 

.5 pts separates the 1st round winner to the conference championship.

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Had same issue in my league. It was agreed that once a punt is received, possession changes and the receiving team becomes the offense. So, on that play the offense fumbled and the Carolina DEF recovered and should get whatever points are allocated for a fumble recovery in your league. Both Yahoo and CBS website scored it like this without any manual changes.

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STL vs. CAR

 

S macdonald muffs punt recovered by brad hoover. 

 

NFL game stats show it as lost fumble.

 

I agree since it was touched by receiving team and therefore a live ball and change of possession by recovering team (CAR).

 

Any NFL rules to support this?

 

.5 pts separates the 1st round winner to the conference championship.

 

611021[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

I don't know the rule offhand, but it's certainly a fumble.

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Had this issue and the player that muffed the punt was one of my receivers. He received a -1 on his game score for a fumble.

 

I argue that when he's a punt returner, he's not my player (there are no points for return yards) and as of now this issue remains unresolved until the rules update in off season. It didn't affect an outcome.

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For NFL stats, a muff is a fumble.

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Had this issue and the player that muffed the punt was one of my receivers.  He received a -1 on his game score for a fumble. 

 

I argue that when he's a punt returner, he's not my player (there are no points for return yards) and as of now this issue remains unresolved until the rules update in off season.  It didn't affect an outcome.

 

611084[/snapback]

 

 

 

I would say in your case, you should NOT be penalized. Since your guy is not being rewarded for anything while on ST, how can they justify him being penalized? Common logic. I'm glad it didn't affect the outcome.

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Had this issue and the player that muffed the punt was one of my receivers.  He received a -1 on his game score for a fumble. 

 

I argue that when he's a punt returner, he's not my player (there are no points for return yards) and as of now this issue remains unresolved until the rules update in off season.  It didn't affect an outcome.

 

611084[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

Would you get the points if he had scored a touchdown?

 

Myfantasyleague also scored it -1 for the fumble, but that's how we have it set up in all of my leagues.

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I would say in your case, you should NOT be penalized. Since your guy is not being rewarded for anything while on ST, how can they justify him being penalized?  Common logic.  I'm glad it didn't affect the outcome.

 

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Actually, if he had run back the TD I may have got the points for it. I don't know. I do know that the DEF/ST he was playing on also were penalized the -1 for the fumble - and I had the DEF/ST too! :D

 

Clearly, that's wrong, but we'll sort it out in the off season.

Edited by Ursa Majoris

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Actually, if he had run back the TD I may have got the points for it.  I don't know.  I do know that the DEF/ST he was playing on also were penalized the -1 for the fumble - and I had the DEF/ST too!  :D

 

Clearly, that's wrong, but we'll sort it out in the off season.

 

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That's why I'm not a fan of negative points. Especially negative for picks. Unless you can find away to decifer "QB fault" picks vs. "receiver fault" picks, it's simply not fair to penalize all picks. I think FF should only reward players never penalize, that's the "fantasy" side of it. Peace.

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That's why I'm not a fan of negative points.  Especially negative for picks.  Unless you can find away to decifer "QB fault" picks vs. "receiver fault" picks, it's simply not fair to penalize all picks.  I think FF should only reward players never penalize, that's the "fantasy" side of it.  Peace.

 

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On the flip side, if a QB throws a lousy pass that should have been picked but goes through the CBs hands or bounces off him to a receiver, and the receiver then hightails it into the EZ, shouldn't the TD and yards be taken away from the QB by that logic?

 

I think most QB yards are earned, and most negative points for picks are earned too. Luck cuts both ways.

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The hardest part, in dealing with Ursa'a case, is that scoring that would require monitoring of every single fumble, etc. to determine when they happened, and, I believe in the raw stats feed from many of the providers, this determination is not given.

 

Easiest thing IMO is to give special teams points to the individual players. you already give kickers points, easy to give individuals points for returns... look at it is an added value feature of certain players that atthe same time clears up all potential issues of having to define what should and should not get awarded to an individual vs. a team position.

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I still would like some official rule to be posted if possible.

 

So far I have posted a digest from NFL.com that shows the following.

 

 

Digest of Rules

 

Fumble

1. The distinction between a fumble and a muff should be kept in mind in considering rules about fumbles. A fumble is the loss of player possession of the ball. A muff is the touching of a loose ball by a player in an unsuccessful attempt to obtain possession.

 

2. A fumble may be advanced by any player on either team regardless of whether recovered before or after ball hits the ground.

 

3. A fumble that goes forward and out of bounds will return to the fumbling team at the spot of the fumble unless the ball goes out of bounds in the opponent’s end zone. In this case, it is a touchback.

 

4. On a play from scrimmage, if an offensive player fumbles anywhere on the field during fourth down, only the fumbling player is permitted to recover and/or advance the ball. If any player fumbles after the two-minute warning in a half, only the fumbling player is permitted to recover and/or advance the ball. If recovered by any other offensive player, the ball is dead at the spot of the fumble unless it is recovered behind the spot of the fumble. In that case, the ball is dead at the spot of recovery. Any defensive player may recover and/or advance any fumble at any time.

 

5. A muffed hand-to-hand snap from center is treated as a fumble.

 

I also posted the following after a google search:

 

If you do a google search for "nfl rules on muffed punt return" you will find plenty of past games where they ruled it a fumble.

 

Below is just one example.

 

http://www.packers.com/news/stories/2003/01/08/2/

 

I do not think there needs to be a ruling, mainly due to all the past games showing this incident as a fumble.

 

More importantly, there were other close games this season to where the happend and could change the standings prior to 1st round playoff week teams.

 

I'm agreeing with all other past games that this STL muffed Punt Return is a fumble and recovered by CAR Defense/Special Teams.

 

 

Can anyone find the official NFL rules available without buying the book? Not enough time to get it for Sat. games.

 

Thanks so much in advance, my fellow Huddlers!!!

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STL vs. CAR

 

S macdonald muffs punt recovered by brad hoover. 

 

NFL game stats show it as lost fumble.

 

I agree since it was touched by receiving team and therefore a live ball and change of possession by recovering team (CAR).

 

Any NFL rules to support this?

 

.5 pts separates the 1st round winner to the conference championship.

 

611021[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

It is definitely a fumble.

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We are still waiting for commish and co-commish to decide what will happen.

 

I'm leaning towards consistency of NFL stats until we can vote for a constitution ammendment next season.

 

Either way someone get the short end. I rather it be due to consistency than a one time scoring change.

 

There are too many close games this season to make any changes now that cleary affects those games.

 

Thanks everyone for you input. I will post the decision when it comes down.

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Verdict is in....

 

It was ruled a fumble as per NFL stats that we agreed to use for website.

 

Even though a muff punt return is not truly a fumble by definition....website and NFL called it a fumble recovered.

 

One of the not so perfect rules (like the Raiders/Pats Tuck Rule).

 

No sense in changing now or next year. We have been living with it since we started the league, no need to change something that requires varying opinions on how the rule is viewed.

 

Arguements could be made about QB/RB exchange. It's always charged to the QB, but instant replay could show that it was the RBs fault. No need to open the can of worms even more.

 

I'm glad that consistentcy was used vs. making the change for 1 game vs. the whole season.

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A muffed punt is not a fumble. This is a fact. A muffed punt can not be advanced by the defensive team. Example S. MacDonald muffs the punt B. Hoover can not pick up the ball and advance it. But is S. Mac Donald catches the ball and then fumbles, B. Hoover can advance the ball. It is not a fumble, thats why it is called a muffed punt!

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A muffed punt is not a fumble. This is a fact. A muffed punt can not be advanced by the defensive team. Example S. MacDonald muffs the punt B. Hoover can not pick up the ball and advance it. But is S. Mac Donald catches the ball and then fumbles, B. Hoover can advance the ball. It is not a fumble, thats why it is called a muffed punt!

 

616078[/snapback]

 

 

 

Within the act of the play, that is true. But since the NFL does not have a stat for "Muffs", the official stat for a muffed ball lost is a fumbled ball.

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A muffed punt is not a fumble. This is a fact. A muffed punt can not be advanced by the defensive team. Example S. MacDonald muffs the punt B. Hoover can not pick up the ball and advance it. But is S. Mac Donald catches the ball and then fumbles, B. Hoover can advance the ball. It is not a fumble, thats why it is called a muffed punt!

 

616078[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

 

Does it say somewhere in the definition of a fumble that the opposing team must have the ability to advance the ball after recovering? I have no idea what the answer is, but I can't imagine that would be the case. A muffed punt simply appears to be a different type of fumble than the coventional one.

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I agree with Balzac.

 

A muffed punt is merely a "situational" fumble that has special rules associated with it, primarily the rules of allowing the defending team to recover and advance the ball.

 

The returner is still charged with a fumble, the defense gets a fumble recovery if they recover it and it goes down as a turnover if they recover it.

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Actually, if he had run back the TD I may have got the points for it.  I don't know.  I do know that the DEF/ST he was playing on also were penalized the -1 for the fumble - and I had the DEF/ST too!  :D

 

Clearly, that's wrong, but we'll sort it out in the off season.

 

611100[/snapback]

 

 

 

IMO, I think that if you start a player and he does anything good or bad while on the field, you should be scored accordingly. In the case of a WR who returns kicks, that should mean TDs as well as fumbles. Whether you also award return yards shouldn't matter.

 

With those rules in mind, I wouldn't hesitate to draft a WR if I knew he was returning kicks. I think the likelihood of him returning one for a TD is much higher than him fumbling 6 times.

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I agree with Balzac.

 

A muffed punt is merely a "situational" fumble that has special rules associated with it, primarily the rules of allowing the defending team to recover and advance the ball.

 

The returner is still charged with a fumble, the defense gets a fumble recovery if they recover it and it goes down as a turnover if they recover it.

616427[/snapback]

 

Is it a fumble if the punted ball hits a blocker in the back? I don't think it is.

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It is still ruled a fumble for statistical purposes as far as I know, and as a fumble recovery for the recovering player.

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Is it a fumble if the punted ball hits a blocker in the back? I don't think it is.

 

616521[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

Good question. My gut says that any blocker dumb enough to take a ball off the back w/o anyone else touching it would be charged with a fumble.

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If on a kickoff, the ball touches a recieving player.... he "muffs" it, but it's on a kickoff. That is not charged as a fumble, is it? I know as soon as the ball goes ten yards it's considered a free ball, while a punted ball is still possessed by the kicking team, until it is touched by the recieving team, even though the recieving team never actually established possession. I think the bottom line is that the NFL needs to establish a stat for muffs. A punt returner can fumble, but a kickoff returned can't, unless he actually establishes possession first.

 

I know besides an on side kick, it is rare for a kickoff to be "muffed", but how does that turnover show up in the stats? Is it not considered a turnover because it is still technically a free ball? I suppose that is the answer, but.... the "muff as fumble" rule, or stat, should be changed.

 

There is another issue, the blocked punt. I suppose there is a rule that says if the recieving team touches the kicked ball behind the line of scrimmage, it's not a free ball. What would happen if the punter kicks a line drive, that hits a player on the recieving team just beyond the line of scrimmage? Is that now a free ball, and would the lineman be charged with a fumble? If that were true, I wonder why it's never been tried at the end of a game, under strange circumstances.

 

One more item, does the kicking team's defense get credit for a forced fumble, either on a muff or one of these crazy examples I brought up?

 

PS: Just to make sure, I looked at the stats for the Tenn: Indy game in week 13, and the Titans did not get credited with a fumble recovery on thier successful on-sides kick, but the Carolina defense did get credit for a fumble recovery on the muff.

Edited by Rovers

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