line of scrimmage

noun phrase

: an imaginary line in football that is parallel to the goal lines and tangent to the nose of the ball laid on the ground and marks the position of the ball at the start of each down

Examples of line of scrimmage in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Regardless of the players on the field, O’Brien stressed the importance of limiting pre-snap penalties on the line of scrimmage. Nicole Yang,, 5 Sep. 2023 Hamilton will probably play as a more traditional safety this year, though defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald will still move him around to take advantage of his destructive potential near the line of scrimmage. Childs Walker, Baltimore Sun, 8 Sep. 2023 The Utes controlled the line of scrimmage on defense, found explosive plays on offense and took advantage of its opponent’s mistakes. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, 1 Sep. 2023 On 3rd and 3 in their own territory inside of three minutes to go, Bean threw a dump pass that was picked off at the line of scrimmage. Ryan Morik, Fox News, 28 Oct. 2023 On fourth-and-goal from the Drake 1, Isaiah Williams was hit behind line of scrimmage, retained his footing and lunged into the end zone for a touchdown. Don Norcross, San Diego Union-Tribune, 21 Oct. 2023 But much has changed since the heyday of quarterbacks calling plays, most notably the number of personnel groupings on both sides of the line of scrimmage. Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times, 22 Sep. 2023 Enter Email Sign Up The Patriots lined up with nine men at the line of scrimmage, ready to rush. Khari Thompson,, 19 Sep. 2023 Catching the ball at the line of scrimmage on a tunnel screen, Gould sliced through SDSU’s defense, then used his sprinter’s speed to pull away. Ndaschel, oregonlive, 16 Sep. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'line of scrimmage.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1909, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of line of scrimmage was circa 1909

Dictionary Entries Near line of scrimmage

Cite this Entry

“Line of scrimmage.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

line of scrimmage

: an imaginary line in football parallel to the goal lines and running through the place the ball is laid before each play begins
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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