American Football Idioms

If you’re not a fan of sports – or at least American sports – some common American idioms might confuse you! And so, in honor of yesterday’s Super Bowl, check out these idioms related to American football.


“kick off”

The kick off is the beginning of the game, and as you might guess, to “kick something off” means to begin.

“Welcome! Let’s kick things off with introductions.”

“Monday morning quarterback”

While professional football is played several days of the week during the season, Sunday is the most traditional and well-known day. And the quarterback is the position on the team that controls the defensive play. So someone who is a “Monday morning quarterback” is someone who criticizes actions after they are done, or who uses hindsight to evaluate a situation.

“Jim was furious about the meeting and blamed his co-worker for not being prepared, but that’s not fair. He’s just being a Monday morning quarterback. His co-worker couldn’t have been prepared for everything that went wrong.

“to run interference”

In football, when offensive players try to block players of the defensive team from tackling the player who has the ball. If you “run interference” for someone, you intervene for someone to help or assist them in some way.

“There were so many questions from the audience and Jenny couldn’t handle them all. I ran interference for her and helped her answer some of them.”


What other American football expressions do you know? Leave a comment!

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