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ibstubro's avatar

Why don’t football players sit on the bench during games?

Asked by ibstubro (18765points) November 2nd, 2015

Baseball players sit on the bench in the dugout. Basketball players sit on the bench. Soccer players sit on the bench. Why don’t football players sit on the bench?

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12 Answers

stanleybmanly's avatar

Don’t they sit either on benches along the sidelines or in special front bleachers near the sidelines.

elbanditoroso's avatar

They couldn’t see the game otherwise. There are all of the other people walking in front of them—coaches, TV crews, trainers, photographers, referees, linesmen, etc. SO the players stand up to be able to see the game.

funkdaddy's avatar

A lot of reasons to be up and about, not many to sit down
– pads suck to sit in
– constantly in and out of the game, without a predictable schedule, or warm up time (offense, defense, special teams)
– usually outdoors
– the game moves 100 yards, so you’re constantly tracking the action, there’s no good seat at all times. If fans could move you’d see a huge push to be near the ball.
– you’re responsible to have your helmet at all times, might as well carry it
– culture. You sit down if you’re distancing yourself from the game, stand up if you’re involved.

zenvelo's avatar

Lots of football players DO sit during the game. They will often sit together as a group to discuss progress/mistakes/signals, especially in the first half.

majorrich's avatar

It must be pretty exciting to watch the game from that level and having people in the way is frustrating. Aluminum benches get cold and aren’t very comfortable, especially if your muscles are all warmed up and ready for exertion. (Imagine pulling a buttock muscle. lol) Some players have roles they play on the sidelines so mill around and get in the way of people trying to watch the game.

Seek's avatar

They only get 17 games a year… the ones not playing have to feel like they’re involved somehow.

Baseball players sit down because they have to play 170 more games and they’re f*king tired.

CWOTUS's avatar

It’s also a misconception to think that baseball players always “sit on the bench” while they’re not on the field. Plenty of ballplayers line the chain-link fences in front of most dugouts – on their feet – to watch action on the field, whether it’s a pitcher’s motions, the baserunner/s or the positioning of the fielders (or girls, women and other fans in the stands behind them sometimes). In addition, there are frequently relief pitchers warming up in the bullpen – despite not being requested to do so – just to loosen up and be ready in case they might be.

marinelife's avatar

They do some of the time. But benches hurt your butt after awhile. Plus, you can stiffen up. They can ride exercise bikes or practice throwing or kicking or catching; talk to coaches, etc.

ibstubro's avatar

But how is that different from other team sports, @elbanditoroso & @funkdaddy?

I’m not sure putting a warm muscle on a cold bench (which sound quite pleasant, actually) would make you pull a butt muscle—(which I once did, bowling, and it wasn’t pretty).

MPA, @Seek. (Most Plausible Answer)

Yeah, @CWOTUS, but I think the idea is baseball players have a designated area to wait/watch the game that doesn’t block the line-of-sight of fans.

I think that’s true of most all team sports, @marinelife. Football players seem to mill around on the sidelines more.

zenvelo's avatar

You can ask Colin Kaepernick all about it next Sunday….

funkdaddy's avatar

@ibstubro so, piece by piece from the list above
– pads in football are a lot different than pads in any of your other examples. They’re closest to probably lacrosse, where they “also do not sit”:: most of the time.
– constantly in an out. Baseball has innings, soccer gets 3 subs for the whole game in the outdoor game. As a comparison, low level indoor soccer subs quickly and frequently, and everyone stands unless they don’t want to play.
– usually outdoors – just means the bench isn’t offering anything other than a seat. If it does, and people want heat or cooling provided there, then they sit down.
– the game moves 100 yards. As apposed to baseball where there’s a field of view and the dugout is a pretty good seat. Soccer you could argue, but top level benches look like this so it’s not exactly a solid comparison.
– your helmet. not much to add.
– culture – probably the biggest part. You’re supposed to be fired up and ready to rock at all times. That’s just the culture. 20 seconds to get in the game is too long. If you’re up and at the sideline you’re into the game, if you’re off behind all that, you’re not. You run the risk of giving the appearance you’re moping, hurt, or worn out.

Honestly I don’t think any of the other sports you list really sit down as much as you think.

Baseball dugouts usually look like this, this, and occasionally like this. Notice that last one doesn’t look like as much fun as the others. They just got beat.

Basketball benches do everything they can to stay involved and ready, so they more often look like this or this, than they have everyone sitting. By rule basketball has a fairly small box where the team has to stay.

So it’s not as black and white as you’ve laid out here. Football just happens to have multiple reasons that the bench isn’t used as much, but being off the bench is seen as a positive thing in most sports.

ibstubro's avatar

Definitive GA @funkdaddy.

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