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What is Canadian Football? Here’s Your Overview

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What is Canadian Football?

Canadian Football is basically very similar to American Gridiron but played in Canada and with a few changes to the rules, players and field. With Canadian Football you can see the influence of the Rugby and Soccer roots in the rules of their game.

The basics of Canadian Football – it is played on a 101m by 59m field, with 12 football players a side who are trying to control the field of play to advance the football to either goal.

A Brief History of Canadian Football:

The game of Canadian (Rugby) Football has its roots in the mid 1860’s, growing from Rugby Football to eventually become the Canadian Football known today. The Canadian Rugby Football Union was first formed in 1873, this was the first try at governing Canadian football.

Since then various other unions formed and dismantled, all of this leading to the now set up of Canadian Football League in 1958.

The Canadian Football League (CFL) is the only major professional Football league in Canada, and its Grey Cup Championship is currently one of the most watched sports events. There are currently nine teams in the CFL majors, with the 2016 Grey Cup Champions being the Ottawa Redblacks, compared to the 32 teams currently in the NFL. You can bet on all these teams and matches at sports betting sites and there are always plenty of markets open for all.

Here are some of the most noticeable differences when comparing American Football to Canadian:

– Canadian football has 12 players on the field, American football has 11 players.

– CFL has only 25 seconds between plays compared to the 40 seconds in the NFL

– The Canadian field is wider than the American field by about 15 yards, this leads to a more spread out play for the CFL

– CFL goal posts are on the goal line and not the end line like NFL, this means shorter attempt at a field goal, which means field goals are more common in the CFL

– CFL you have 3 downs to gain 10 yards vs. 4 downs to gain 10 yards in the NFL

– The CFL shows its Rugby roots by having an open field kick by any player at any time, and the NFL kicks are only from behind the line of scrimmage.

Show Me the Money

Canadian Football players still have day jobs, and that should probably tell you all you need to know about the salaries CFL players receive? The CFL had a salary cap of $5.1 million in 2016, compare this to the salary cap of $155 million for the NFL, and you will see the need for day jobs.

This salary cap has quite an impact on the CFL, as it leads to loss of major talent to the NFL (wouldn’t you rather earn the $$ and not have a day job, focus on your game?). This talent loss is not a deterrent to the fervour of the Canadian Football fan; the CFL is not the only league popular in Canada and many Canadians are supporters of not only the CFL but the amateur league, Football Canada.

The talent in Canadian football, though sometimes lost to the big money in the NFL is always enshrined and remembered in the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, in Hamilton Ontario.

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