What is an extra point?
The extra point, or PAT, is the action of setting up to attempt a one-point field goal from the opponent’s 2-yard line right after a touchdown in American football. The team receives 1 point if the kick clears the uprights.
The PAT, which has its origins in soccer, is one of gridiron football’s most ancient components. Initially, the goal of the game was not primarily to score a touchdown. A field goal, a touchdown, and an extra point each had a point value of 5, 1, and 4, respectively.
The significance of touchdowns had increased by the turn of the 20th century. The PAT kick’s point value had dropped to its current one-point value by this point. Now, the touchdown was worth five points. The touchdown was raised to six in 1912.
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Why do we need an extra point?
Teams select to kick the PAT when they want to be certain they will score points since kickers are more likely to make the PAT than make the two-point conversion, which is much riskier. Coaches will send the kicker in and attempt the PAT conversion unless a team absolutely must score two points to remain in the game.
With so much of the game still to be played and when the team is trailing by just one possession, it makes sense for the away team to attempt the PAT in this situation rather than taking the significant risk of a two-point conversion attempt. Coaches will always choose to attempt the extra point in a situation like this because of the high conversion.
After the touchdown, the goal was probably saved by adding the two-point conversion. Football’s traditional scoring system should have been abandoned at that moment. However, the two-point conversion gives the game a strategic layer that goes beyond its actual use. It gives teams trailing in games hope that a win can still be possible with the right mix of touchdowns and conversions.
Extra point in football distance
Instead of kicking the PAT, a two-point conversion attempt from the line of scrimmage may be made if two points are required or desired. A two-point conversion that is successful is worth two points.
In the NFL, the two-yard line is the starting position for the point-after scrimmage. In American high school and college football, extra point field goal distance is from the three-yard line. It is from the five-yard line in Canadian. With the exception of a few uncommon situations at the high school level, the game clock does not advance during a PAT attempt.
Extra points rules
When an attempt is blocked or the defense gains possession, the play is over in the NFL. The play goes on until the ball is otherwise dead in many other football leagues, such as the Canadian Football League and college football. This enables the defense to get the ball back and return it for two points to the opponent’s end zone.
Due to the fact that points are sometimes used as a tiebreaker in the standings, the NFL requires the PAT attempt following a score during regulation. This rarely can lead to the need for such an attempt to be made at the game’s conclusion when it cannot alter the result. There is no additional point awarded if the game is in sudden-death overtime.
Overall, the extra point is one of the important parts of American football. Earn some PATs and follow our website – Footballterms to learn more about difficult football terms and slang.
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