How Long Does a Pro Football Game Last?

Save

The regulation time of a pro football games is 60 minutes. But many things can stop the game clock: dead balls, television commercials and timeouts, for example. And then there's the halftime break. All things considered, a game will actually usally last between three and three and a half hours.

Football players on the line of scrimmage
(miflippo/iStock/Getty Images)

The official length of a game is 60 minutes. This time is divided into four 15-minute quarters.

Stop watch in hand
XIANGYANG ZHANG/iStock/Getty Images

There is a break of two minutes between the first and second quarters as well as the third and fourth quarters. A longer, halftime break occurs between the second and third quarters. Halftime usually lasts 12 minutes, but it can be extended in the playoffs.

Marching  band at halftime
Jani Bryson/iStock/Getty Images

Even though one quarter's time limit is 15 minutes, the clock doesn't count down continuously. The clock stops any time an incomplete pass is thrown, a player runs out of bounds, during changes of possession of the ball, and after a team scores.

Quarter back throws ball
Thinkstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Teams can call a timeout to stop play three times in each half. Officials can stop play for circumstances like player injuries and the need to review certain plays on replay. There is also the two-minute warning: an official timeout with two minutes remaining in each half.

Football official signals on field
Bob Ainsworth/iStock/Getty Images

TV networks will use a stoppage of play to air commercials. Two common times for this are following a score or a kick to the other team. This often doubles the time such a break would usually last, which would be about 30 seconds.

Football player celebrates scoring
Pete Saloutos/iStock/Getty Images

If the game is tied after regulation, the game continues in "sudden-death" overtime (the game will end the next time a team scores). In the regular season, a game ends in a tie after a maximum of 15 overtime minutes. In the playoffs, the game continues until someone scores, thus winning the game.

Fans celebrate a win
Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images

Related Searches

References

Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

Related Searches

Check It Out

10 Delicious Game Day Eats That Rival the Game

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!