Paper Football League Rules 2020

General Rules

  1. Tournament consists of teams separated into 8 different Divisions. 2 Conferences, each with 4 Divisions. Each Division must have 7 teams. 
  2. Each team must consist of at least 4 active players and may have 1 alternate player/coach. 
  3. Division –

Only the winner of each division will advance to a first-round playoff game. No Wild Card or second place finishers will advance. All teams are guaranteed to play 6 games.

  1. If teams are tied at the end of the regulation play, the winner of the Division will be determined as follows:
    1. Head to Head play, followed by 
    2. Most points scored, followed by
    3. Least points allowed.
  2. In the event the teams are tied after the all the tiebreakers, a coin flip will be used to determine the Divisional winner. 
  3. Playoff are based on a tournament style seeding format:
    1. Fielding 8 different divisions – (#1 vs #8, #3 vs #6, #2 vs #7, #4 vs #5). 
    2. Seeding is determined by the following:
      1. Overall wins, followed by
      2. Most points scored, followed by 
      3. Least points allowed.
    3. In the event the teams are tied after the initial seeding, a coin flip will be used to determine the tied teams seeding. 
  4. All games are timed by the officials.
    1. Regular season games are three minutes (3:00) timed.
    2. Playoff games are three and a half minutes (3:30) timed.
    3. The Championship game is three minutes and three quarters (3:45) timed.
    4. In the event any Regular season game is tied (after time expires), the tie will stand and is recorded as a tie for divisional standing purposes.
    5. In the event any Playoff game ends in a tie (after time expires), each team will attempt a field goal (from their own goal line). Each team will be given equal attempts. A successful field goal followed by an opponent’s failure to convert (or visa-versa) determines the winner in overtime. 
    6. Teams cannot change the rotational order (player sequence) of play during a game. This includes all Regular season and Playoff games.    

Playing Rules

  1. Flip a coin or paper football to determine who goes first.
  2. The football is placed at the 20-yard line (about a fifth of the table) and the player #1 flicks/hits the ball (kickoff) toward the opponent’s goal line. 
  3. If the football does not reach the goal line, the opposing opponent’s player #1 flicks/hits the ball back towards the opponent’s goal line. Both players remain on the board until a stoppage of play has been determined. Each player on a team takes a turn in succession (player #1 then #2 then #3 then #4 and then back to player #1). 
    1. A change of sequence of a team’s rotational order can only be altered at the beginning of a new game and will remain in effect until the end of that game.   
    2. An Alternate player/coach player can be substituted only at the beginning of a game and must remain in play until the end of that game. 
  4. A touchdown occurs when any part of the paper football overhangs/on the opponent’s goal line. An extra point opportunity is subsequently tried from the 50-yard line. After the attempt (regardless of a good or failed kick), the scoring team kicks-off. 
  5. If a football lands past the goal line or falls off the table’s end, or the side of the table or any combination of both, it is the end of that player’s turn. The opposing teams is awarded a field goal opportunity (from their own goal line). If the field goal is successful, the scoring team kicks-off. If the attempt fails, the opponent kicks from their own 20-yard line.
  6. All games are timed and the high score wins.


  1. Touchdown – The football must have some part of it on or hanging over the goal line to be counted as a touchdown. A touchdown is worth 6 points. 
  2. Extra Point – The football is kicked from the 50-yard line and is worth 1 point. 
  3. Field Goal – The football is kicked from a team’s own goal line. Field goals are worth 3 points. 

Rulings, Definitions and Penalties

  1. Players turn – An individual player’s turn is continued until there is a stoppage of play. A stoppage of play occurs when a touchdown is scored, or if a football is flicked/hit off any part of the playing table (including when a football passes beyond the edge of the goal line) or when a penalty is called. Then next player’s turn then begins.         
  2. Flick/Hit – Defined as a flick motion of the finger(s) forward or a push from behind the ball. A push from behind cannot exceed two inches from the original placement of the ball. Sliding the paper football, with finger on top of the ball, is prohibited.
  3. Kicking – Defined as follows:
    1. A player is allowed to place the football on top of the thumb or index finger (thumb or index finger must remain on the table at all times) for the kick. The kick is then completed with the other hand. 
    2. A player is allowed to place the football on the playing field, held steady by a finger or thumb. The kick is then completed with the other hand. 
  4. If there is debate whether or not a football is on or over the edge line (goal line), a straight edge, such as a ruler, may be slid against the edge line. If the football touches the line, it is ruled a touchdown.
  5. Intentional interference is made with the opposing team’s s either moves or touches a stationary football deliberately (a touchdown can be awarded if the paper football is at or near (within a half inch) of the goal line). For all other intentional interference fouls, a rethrow is awarded at the spot where the contact was made. Intentional interference includes blowing on a football, moving the football with physical contact, and/or knowingly shaking the playing field. 
  6. If accidental contact is made with a sliding football, a rethrow is awarded at the spot where the contact was made. 
  7. If an accidental contact is made with a stationary football (which was previously played) should be returned to roughly the original spot for a rethrow. The spot must be agreed upon by the players of the game. If the football is accidentally knocked backwards so as to overhang on the edge (goal line), it is ruled a touchdown.
  8. Delay of Game Penalty – Delay includes deliberately taking more than 10 seconds on a player’s turn:
    1. By not attempting to recover a football, or
    2. Setup of kicking a field goal, extra points, or
    3. Slow rotation of changing players after his/her turn. 

It is the official’s discretion to call a delay of game penalty. If invoked, the penalty automatically gives the opposing team a field goal opportunity.

TEAMS – Organizations
Aldersgate United Methodist Church
American Legion Tustin Post 227
Laurel House
Beckman High School Second Harvest Food Bank Club
Beckman High School Wounded Warriors Club
Blind Children’s Learning Center
Boy Scout Troop 243
Boy Scout Troop 36
Cancer Kinship
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Orange County
DANCE! To your Hearts Delight
Exchange Club of Tustin
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Heritage Elementary School
Kids READ!
Knights of Pythias
Koshare Chapter – Order of the Arrow BSA
Miss Tustin Scholarship Association
Mr. Tustin
OC Veterans Outpost
Patriots and Paws
Pulmonary Alveolar Proteinosis Foundation
SOCAL Water Polo
Sons of the American Legion
Soroptimist Int’l Santa Ana – Tustin
The All-American Boys Chorus
The Salvation Army Orange County
The Salvation Army Orange County #2
Tiller Buddies Red & Black Club
Tustin Aquatics
Tustin Area Council for Fine Arts
Tustin Area Senior Center
Tustin Area Senior Center
Tustin Cobra Football & Cheer
Tustin Community Foundation – Rock & Brews
Tustin Dollars for Scholars
Tustin High School Band
Tustin High School Boys Volleyball
Tustin High School Dance Team
Tustin High School Football
Tustin High School Girls Volleyball Team
Tustin High School Instrumental Music Organization Boosters
Tustin High School JV Girls Soccer
Tustin High School Model United Nations
Tustin High School Orchestra
Tustin High School Varsity Girls Soccer
Tustin Historical Society
Tustin Host Lions Club
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Tustin Museum
Tustin Police Foundation
Tustin Public Schools Foundation
Tustin-Santa Ana Rotary Club Team 1
Tustin-Santa Ana Rotary Club Team 2
Beckman High School Make It Happen Club
Waymakers Tustin Youth Shelter
Village of Hope
Kiwanis Club of Tustin
Beckman High School Tennis Team 1
Beckman High School Tennis Team 2