American football, known in the United States simply as football, is a competitive team sport known for combining strategy with physical play. The objective of the game is to score points by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone. The ball can be advanced by carrying it (a running play) or by throwing it to a teammate (a passing play). Points can be scored in a variety of ways, including carrying the ball over the opponent's goal line, catching a pass thrown over that goal line, kicking the ball through the goal posts at the opponent's end zone, or tackling an opposing ball carrier within his end zone. The winner is the team with the most points when the time expires.
Football in "Breakups"
Football in "Next Year in Jerusalem"
In a Super Cup quarterfinals match in the 22nd century, Palestine's American Football team gave a notably inept performance. The disgracefulness of this was a rare issue that Palestine's Muslim and Jewish populations could agree on.
Football in Southern Victory
Football was a popular sport throughout both the United States and the Confederate States. In the first half of the 20th century, it eclipsed baseball in popularity. Most major cities in both countries were home to at least one professional football team, organized into regional leagues with the teams of neighboring cities.
Professional teams in the U.S. included the Philadelphia Barrels, the Los Angeles Dons, the Portland Columbias, and the Seattle Sharks. Great professional players include Lou Gehrig, Hank Greenberg, and Jimmie Foxx.
Amateur football games were a wildly popular pastime throughout both countries. Many high schools had football teams; Armstrong Grimes was a backup on his school's team. In Toledo, Ohio, steelworkers and police officers played a game against each other in 1923 as a way of burying the hatchet after a number of brawls erupted between the two during a period of labor tensions which had disrupted the city for several years. Most famously, on Christmas Day 1914, US and CS soldiers played football games in an impromptu truce which broke out on every front of the Great War.
A version of the game was also played in the Republic of Quebec with an extra player and a significantly bigger playing field.
In the early days of the Second Great War, many players were conscripted and non-essential travel seemed unpatriotic so playing stopped. However, U.S. President Al Smith declared football essential to the country's morale. Thus, games continued, even though many professionals had enlisted in the armed forces.
After the Second Great War, a US commandant attempted to ease tensions in occupied Alabama by a game of football, officially called the Peace Bowl. The game, played by a team of US soldiers against a team of CS civilians, was actually quite hostile as the players made no secret of hating each other. Confederate rebels attacked the game, killing more CS civilians than US soldiers in the process.
- Imaginings, p. 23.
- Return Engagement, pg. 341, hc.
- Ibid., pg. 615.