Long Snapper In Football? What Does It Mean?

Long Snapper In Football? What Does It Mean

During a field goal attempt or punt by a special team, a long snapper snaps the ball on the hike. Even though the special teams unit doesn’t feature this football player position very often on highlight reels, it is still crucial. The full description of a long snapper’s duties, including how many yards they can snap and other information, can be found here.

In Football, What Does A Long Snapper Do?

A specialized center used on the special teams unit is called a long snapper. The main responsibility of this position is to snap the ball farther, typically seven or fifteen yards, for field goal attempts and punts.

Key Takeaways Of A Long Snapper

Because their accuracy determines whether or not the attempting team will have the chance to get a good field goal or punting attempt, long snappers are crucial.

Not messing up the punt or field goal is the main objective of this role.

  • To make the ball travel farther and be easier to handle, the snapper spirally snaps the ball.
  • Long snappers play a crucial role on special teams and are frequently underappreciated heroes.

What Does A Long Snapper Do?

Compared to regular snappers, long snappers can snap the ball farther. Long snappers, also referred to as deep snappers, are a part of special teams. The long snappers team may find itself in a sticky situation as a result of poor snaps, which could result in the opposing team scoring.

When Is The Long Snapper Employed?

Members of the special teams include long snappers. They are used by teams when they punt and try to make a field goal. Since they are receiving the punt and never snap the ball as the return team, long snappers are never used by the punt returning team. Due to the fact that the ball is never snapped, neither team uses them on kickoffs.

Are Long Snappers Center?

It’s a common misconception that the offensive line’s long snapper also serves as the line’s center, but that isn’t always the case. Given how crucial this position is on special teams, NFL teams now frequently have a dedicated long snapper on their roster. However, teams used to fill this position with a bench offensive lineman who was chosen at random, but that is no longer the case.

When Did Teams Start Using The Long Snapper Position?

The Washington Redskins were responsible for modernizing the position of the long snapping football player in 1971. George Allen, the head coach, and the general manager assigned George Burman solely to the long snapping position. Weirdly, the Washington Redskins asked Goerge Burman to be their devoted long snapper on the team that season while he was still in his retirement.

The NFL Draft: Are Long Snappers Worth It?

In the NFL, the majority of casual fans won’t be familiar with many long snappers by name. This is due to the fact that the position is invisible, and most people aren’t aware of it unless a bad snap occurs during a play. The majority of long snappers are signed by teams as undrafted free agents, so their names are not broadcast on television.

Long Snappers: Why Are They Important?

Long snapping might not seem like a crucial position to fill for college football or NFL teams, but it’s one of those things you don’t realize you need until you actually do.

In 2012, Oakland Raiders long snapper Jon Condo provided a textbook illustration of poor long kicking. The kicker had to move to catch the next punt because Jon was bouncing snaps to him, forcing him to move. To make it simpler for Jon to snap the ball, the defense could attempt to block the punt by getting closer than the usual 15 yards.

Long Snapper In Football? What Does It Mean
Long Snapper In Football? What Does It Mean?

A Great Long Snapper Traits

Excellent Balance

One of the most important qualities that long snappers need to possess is balance.

They must look back between their legs at their target after bending over to begin each play.

Then, they must forcefully snap the ball back before swiftly rising to block charging defenders.

If a long snapper lacks good balance, they won’t be able to do all of this while standing still.

To best utilize their strength, long snappers must maintain excellent posture and positioning.

Excellent Accuracy

It’s one thing to be able to snap the ball with force, but if the snap isn’t precise, it could go horribly wrong. 

Long snappers must therefore possess both the power and pinpoint accuracy necessary for effective throwing.

Long snappers must attempt to place the ball precisely where the punter or holder is.

In order to gather the ball, the target shouldn’t have to move around too much.

An attempted kick may be blocked by a snap that lands on the ground, soars high into the air, or travels too far to either side.

In the worst-case scenario, a bad snap might even cost the team a significant turnover.

Strong, Powerful Arms

Long snappers use their arms to throw, or “snap,” the ball to their target, which is implied by the position’s name.

It’s a long snap because their target is at least seven yards away.

In essence, they throw a football through their legs while it is upside down, behind them.

To be able to throw the football this way and with enough force requires a lot of upper body and arm strength.

Tips For Long Snappers

Working On Lower-body Strength

Although a strong arm was mentioned, a long snapper also needs a lot of lower body strength.

In order to hold their position while bending (to deliver the snap), they will use their lower body as an anchor.

Start by strengthening your lower body if you want to become a great long snapper.

Practicing Snapping

It may go without saying, but snapping is not a natural motion.

People shouldn’t throw a football through their legs while hunched over.

To perfect the motion takes a lot of practice.

If you can’t snap the ball with force and accuracy, you can’t really be a good long snapper, even if you have all the other qualities, abilities, and talents down to a T.

Therefore, if you want to try it, the practice actually snapping the ball first.


In conclusion, a long snapper is an important and frequently ignored player on a football team. A player who can consistently and accurately snap the ball between 7 and 15 yards is frequently overlooked by casual fans. Even more impressive is when a player snaps the ball perfectly in the final seconds of a Super Bowl game or while playing in adverse weather.

Fans do, however, pay attention to long snappers when there is a problem, such as a poor snap. Bad snaps include those that are too short, too long, too wide, and too shaky for the punter or holder to catch. The majority of casual football fans won’t give the long snapper much thought as long as they do their job properly.