fall guy


Definition of fall guy

: scapegoat a fall guy for his boss's errors

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Synonyms for fall guy


goat, scapegoat, whipping boy

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Examples of fall guy in a Sentence

His lawyers will argue that he was set up as a fall guy for crimes he had no part in. the sandlot ball players wanted the littlest kid to be the fall guy for the broken window, figuring that he'd have the best chance of escaping punishment

Recent Examples on the Web

Irving became the fall guy, as stories about his conflicts with teammates, coach Brad Stevens and GM Danny Ainge leaked. Troy L. Smith, cleveland.com, "How Kyrie’s drama took him from Cleveland to Boston to Brooklyn," 1 July 2019 Nicklas Backstrom was tripped by his own teammate, but Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland ended up in the sin bin as the fall guy. Tyler Horka, SI.com, "Stanley Cup Final: Capitals Dominate in Game 3 Win Against Golden Knights," 2 June 2018 That felt like football having its fun, turning the hero of the last game into the fall guy, and that sense of a sport toying with its champion was compounded with the second goal. Jonathan Wilson, SI.com, "Arrogant Germany Accepts Its Shocking, Deserved World Cup Elimination," 27 June 2018 The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity’ The rollicking tale of Macedonio Guerra, aka Mace, a Puerto Rican wrestler from the Bronx perpetually playing the fall guy in professional wrestling companies. Chris Kaltenbach, baltimoresun.com, "Hons, Greeks and a soulful circus: the best of Baltimore's arts and entertainment scene this week," 3 June 2018 Many analysts considered that Mr. Bárcenas, after years of close service to the Popular Party and its top leaders, was being made the fall guy. New York Times, "Rajoy Government in Spain Is Threatened by Verdicts in Corruption Case," 25 May 2018 Australia Likely to be the fall guys in a competitive group after suffering through plenty of disarray in qualifying. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "World Cup: Ranking all 32 teams, from hopeless to hopefuls," 22 May 2018 Explain why, and how, in your view, the hunting guide, Theo Bronkhorst, became the fall guy. National Geographic, "Meet the Man Who Knew Cecil the Lion Best," 28 Apr. 2018 But general manager Ed Lynch couldn’t fix the holes that winter, and when the Cubs fell apart in 1999, Riggleman became the fall guy for Lynch and president Andy MacPhail. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, "White Sox end their circus trip, while Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts juggles," 19 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fall guy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fall guy

1895, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for fall guy

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for fall guy

The first known use of fall guy was in 1895

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More Definitions for fall guy

fall guy


English Language Learners Definition of fall guy

informal : a person who is blamed for something done by others

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More from Merriam-Webster on fall guy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fall guy

Spanish Central: Translation of fall guy

Nglish: Translation of fall guy for Spanish Speakers

Comments on fall guy

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