- The definition of football is a game played on a 100-yard field with two teams of 11 players and one goal at each end, or the actual ball for such a game, or an issue that is passed around.
- An example of football is the game the New York Jets play.
- An example of football is a difficult decision that is not made by one committee and, instead, is passed to another committee to make.
Players in an American football game.
- Brit. soccer
- Brit. Rugby (sense )
- in the U.S., a game played on a field that is 100 yards long, with 2 teams of 11 players and a goal at each end: the players may attempt to score a touchdown by running or passing the ball, kick a field goal, etc.
- Canadian football
- the oval, inflated, leather or rubber ball used in playing football in the U.S. or Canada
- any issue, problem, etc. that is passed about or shunted from one group to another: a political football
Origin of footballMiddle English foteballe
- Sports a. A game played by two teams of 11 players each on a rectangular, 100-yard-long field with goal lines and goalposts at either end, the object being to gain possession of a ball and advance it in running or passing plays across the opponent's goal line or kick it through the air between the opponent's goalposts.b. The inflated oval ball used in this game.
- Chiefly British a. Rugby.b. Soccer.c. The ball used in Rugby or soccer.
- Informal A problem or issue that is discussed among groups or persons without being settled: The issue of tax reform became a political football.
(countable and uncountable, plural footballs)
- (other than the US, uncountable) association football: a game in which two teams each contend to get a round ball into the other team's goal primarily by kicking the ball. Known as soccer in the US
- Each team scored three goals when they played football.
- (US, uncountable) American football: a game in which two teams attempt to get an ovoid ball to the end of each other's territory.
- Each team scored two touchdowns when they played football.
- (Canada, uncountable) Canadian football: a game played on a wide field in which two teams attempt to get an ovoid ball to the end of each other's territory.
- They played football in the snow.
- (Australia, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania, Northern Territory, uncountable) Australian rules football.
- (Ireland, uncountable) Gaelic football: a field game played with similar rules to hurling, but using hands and feet rather than a stick, and a ball, similar to, yet smaller than a soccer ball.
- (Australia, New South Wales, Queensland, uncountable) rugby league.
- (Australia, Ireland, New Zealand) rugby union
- (countable) The ball used in any game called "football".
- The player kicked the football.
- (uncountable) Practise of these particular games, or techniques used in them.
- (figuratively, countable) An item of discussion, particularly in a back-and-forth manner
- That budget item became a political football.
- (slang, countable) The nickname of the leather briefcase containing classified nuclear war plans, which is always near the US President.