Explaining the Roles: Who Does the Tackling in Football?

Football is one of the most exciting and adrenaline-fueled sports out there. It’s a game of strategy, strength, and speed that requires heightened coordination and focus. And, at the core of this sport is one key element – tackling.

But, have you ever stopped to ponder over who does the tackling in football? That’s a question that has baffled many keen followers of the sport, and it’s not surprising given the intense nature of this game. After all, tackling involves high levels of agility and precision to bring down the opponent, and getting it wrong can result in serious injuries.

As we delve deeper into the art of tackling, it’s important to understand the different techniques and roles involved in this aspect of the game. From defensive lineman to linebackers, and safeties to cornerbacks, there are a variety of positions on the field that call for expert tackling skills. So, let’s take a closer look at who exactly is responsible for tackling in football, and how each position plays a crucial role in making this game what it is.


In football, the safeties are players primarily responsible for defending against deep pass plays. They are typically positioned behind the linebackers, near the end zone, and are responsible for intercepting passes or stopping receivers who have gotten past the line of scrimmage. Safeties are typically divided into two categories: free safety and strong safety.

  • Free Safety: The free safety is known for playing a deep coverage zone and covering the deep part of the field. They are responsible for reading quarterback plays and anticipating where the ball will be thrown to try to intercept it. They also help out with run coverage and can tackle receivers or running backs if necessary.
  • Strong Safety: The strong safety is known for being a bit more physical than the free safety. They typically line up closer to the line of scrimmage and are responsible for covering the tight end or a receiver in the slot. They are also responsible for stopping the running game when the offense decides to run the ball.

The safety role can be one of the most difficult tasks in football as it requires understanding the offensive scheme, reading the opposing quarterback’s intentions, and reacting in an instant to make a play. Safeties who can successfully fulfill these roles can be game-changers and help lead their team to victory.

Below is a table showing some of the top safeties in the NFL and their key statistics:

Player Team Tackles Sacks Interceptions
Tyrann Mathieu Arizona Cardinals 78 0.5 2
Eric Weddle Baltimore Ravens 89 0 4
Earl Thomas Seattle Seahawks 90 0 2

As you can see, these safeties are among the best in the league and their skill sets vary depending on their roles. The next time you watch a football game, pay attention to the safeties and how they impact the game – they may just surprise you!

Who Does the Tackling in Football: Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who is responsible for tackling in football?

Mostly, defenders and linebackers are responsible for tackling in football. However, any player can tackle if they are in a position to do so.

2. Can offensive players tackle in football?

Offensive players are not usually supposed to tackle in football. However, if a player on the offensive side loses the ball, they may try to tackle the opposing player who has gained possession.

3. Are there any rules for tackling in football?

Yes, there are rules for tackling in football. Players are not allowed to tackle other players in dangerous or unsportsmanlike ways, and there are rules around contact with the head and neck area.

4. What happens if a player tackles illegally in football?

If a player tackles another player illegally in football, it may lead to a penalty, a free-kick or a yellow or red card depending on the severity of the action.

5. Is tackling an important skill in football?

Yes, tackling is an essential skill in football. Defenders and linebackers need to be able to tackle effectively to prevent the opposing team from scoring and to regain possession of the ball.

6. Can women play football and tackle?

Yes, women can play football and tackle just as effectively as men. There are many women’s football leagues worldwide where players tackle each other in the same way as men in the sport.

Closing Thoughts

Thanks for taking the time to read about who does the tackling in football. Remember, tackling is an essential part of the game, and while it can be dangerous, there are rules in place to protect players. Whether you’re a seasoned football fan or just getting interested in the sport, learning about the different aspects of the game can help you appreciate it even more. So, stay tuned for more articles on football and other sports. And don’t forget to visit us again!