In football, the acronym ff stands for forced fumble. Forced fumbles are a statistic awarded when a defensive player causes an offensive player to lose possession of the football.
Forced fumbles in football can only occur when a player who has established possession of the ball loses it.
If a player attempts to catch a ball and it is knocked free this is a pbu not a an ff.
Players are awarded an ff whether they recover the fumble or not. So long as the ball is knocked loose it is a forced fumble.
Does a forced fumble count as a tackle?
Yes, a forced fumble counts as a tackle. Even though the player is not downed losing possession of the ball is going to stop his forward progress on the field.
For this reason, any defender that is able to force their opponent to fumble the ball is going to be credited with a tackle.
What positions get ffs in football?
Now that you know ff in football statistics stands for forced fumble you may be wondering how these plays occur.
To get a better understanding we are going to break down the positions most likely to force the opponent to fumble.
Defensive end is one position in which forcing fumbles is quite common. These players play on the defensive line and earn their money chasing down the quarterback.
Ideally, a defensive end wants to tackle the quarterback before he throws the ball. Defensive ends are large and powerful players that can often lay devastating hits.
For this reason, quarterbacks have trouble holding onto the ball when hit by these players. If the quarterback does not see the hit coming it is common they will fumble to ball in their backfield.
If the defensive end is able to jump on the loose ball it can cause a huge swing in the game.
Linebackers are the players on the defense that get the most tackles. These players line up right in the middle of the defensive formation.
These players get plenty of tackles on running backs and receivers that come across the middle of the field.
Since these players get so many tackles they have plenty of opportunities to jar the ball loose.
Every once and a while a linebacker is going knock the ball out of his opponent’s arms creating a forced fumble.
Additionally, these players will blitz the quarterback on occasion. When they are able to get through the offensive line they can often generate sacks. Similar to the defensive end these hits can often result in a fumble.
One more position that earns its fair share of ffs in a game is safety. Safeties play deep into the defensive backfield and stop their opponents from completing long passes.
When these passes are caught safeties are often going to try and jar the ball loose. When a safety attempts to make a tackle it is often going to be deep downfield.
Since the player has already gained a lot of yards simply tackling them is not going to be a great play for the defense. Instead, the safety will tackle the player will swinging his arm at the ball in hopes of forcing a fumble.
Usually, the receiver will protect the ball but every once and a while a safety is able to make solid contact and force a fumble.