Mother’s Day and Football

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Mother’s Day” by Wokandapix is licensed under CC by 2.0

Thankfully to me (and much to my wife’s chagrin), our daughter is turning out to be like me in a number of ways. For instance, she has already managed to accumulate about a dozen pairs of mismatched socks (I have several dozens). She insists on having no less than three chocolate chip cookies at one go (I agree; one simply does not get the actual flavor of the cookies if one eats less than three chocolatey ones at a time). And when last weekend she announced that she wanted to make Mother’s Day special for her mum by playing football with her, my joy knew no bounds (like dad, like daughter). It is another story that the wife’s outright refusal dampened the daughter’s spirits to a certain degree. However, we made the day special by having pepperoni pizza overloaded with extra cheese – something both wife and daughter adore. Peace.

Coming to Mother’s Day, I was curious as to how it came into being. Here’s the story behind it: A lady named Ann Reeves Jarvis was a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers back in the times of the American Civil War. When she passed away in the year 1905, her daughter called Anna Jarvis started a campaign in the United States to make ‘Mother’s Day’ a recognized holiday in the country – a day to honor all mothers around the world because she believed that a mom was ‘the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world’. And hence, the first Mother’s Day came to be celebrated in the year 1908, when Anna held a memorial service for her mother at a church in West Virginia. This was her way to honor her mum by carrying on with the work she had started out to do.

Now I’m looking forward to Father’s Day which is still more than a month away. Will it be about football, along with other things? Fingers crossed!

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Food and Football over the Thanksgiving weekend

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“Thanksgiving 1900”. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Thanksgiving_1900.JPG#/media/File:Thanksgiving_1900.JPG

I read something the other day that surprised me. Thanksgiving Day is that day when Americans consume the most food in a year. Yes, that surprised me. I had thought people would play football or maybe go out and watch their favorite players. But no, we park ourselves in front of the telly and stuff ourselves. Yes we eat ourselves sick over the Thanksgiving weekend.

So when did this association of Thanksgiving and football start?

Well Abraham Lincoln declared the Thanksgiving holiday in 1863. After the semi formal association of playing football over Thanksgiving through the 1870s, it became a formal association from 1882 on, when the Intercollegiate Football Association started holding an annual collegiate championship game on Thanksgiving Day in New York. Most people had the time to play and watch and well, it became a tradition. Over the years NFL’s three games over the Thanksgiving holiday too have become a tradition, with many teams playing in throwback uniforms.

Well, let’s keep the tradition alive this year too – lets eat, watch and play football. Happy Thanksgiving!

Teaching Kids More About Football – Player Positions

Attribute – “Slipping Through His Fingers” by jedolby3 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Attribute – “Slipping Through His Fingers” by jedolby3 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Kids take to sports like ducks take to water. Football is one of the most popular sports around and it’s a good idea to teach your kids the basics of football at an early age. You could do this the old-fashioned way by taking them out to the yard or to a game. Or, you could exploit the benefits that technology offers and teach your little ones in an easy and entertaining way! Mobile games like NFL’s Heroes & Rivals are not only fun to play, but can also educate kids about different aspects of football. Through a series of mini games, Heroes & Rivals encourages kids to learn about different teams, player positions and other skills like decision-making.

One of the first things your kid should know before playing a football game on an app or watching a game is to know about the various player positions in American football.

Getting started

So, let’s play ball! In American football, each team has 11 players. A player position is the role of a player on the field, and this depends on whether the player is on the defense or the offense side. Offense is the team with the ball that needs to score. Defense is the team that has to try and stop offense from scoring and take the ball from them.

Player Positions on the Offensive Side

Center: He begins the play and snaps the ball to the quarterback. He also blocks defense and directs other players.

Quarterback: This is considered as the most important position. Once he gets the ball from the Center, his job is to run with the ball or take the call to pass it to another player.

Running Back: Also called the Half Back, this is the player who runs with the ball. They block and receive passes, and sometimes throw.

Fullback: Their job is to block for the quarterback and for the running back. They are good runners.

Wide Receiver: This player specializes in catching passes. He is the fastest receiver in the team.

Tight End: The player in this position is expected to both block and receive passes.

Left Guard and Right Guard: Found on either side of the center, these players have to block for the quarterback and other players carrying the ball.

Left Tackle and Right Tackle: These two players are on the outside of the guards who are required to block the passing and running plays.

Attribute – American Football Positions2 by RegisFrey is licensed under CC BY 3.0

Attribute – American Football Positions2 by RegisFrey is licensed under CC BY 3.0

 

Player Positions on the Defensive Side

Linebacker: This is the player who defends the run and pass, and is found behind the defense linemen. These players are good at tackling. There can be middle linebackers and outside linebackers.

Cornerback: Positioned opposite the offensive team’s receivers, they have to stop the passes and try to push the runner to the middle where he can be tackled. In some situations, they tackle the runner.

Defensive Tackle: These players stop the running play and rush the passer, and are on the inner side of the defensive line.

Defensive End: These are the outside players of the defensive line and they have to contain the runs and also try to block and tackle the ball carrier.

Safety: These defense players are required to cover and stop the deep pass and are considered as the last line of defense.

When it comes to player positions, there’s a lot that the kids need to take in. Give them time, let them watch as many football games as they need to, encourage them to use fun football-related apps, and become masters at every aspect of the game. Just make sure that fun and learning go hand in hand!