Football Field Dimensions Explained

Written By: Chris Haddad
Updated: March 6, 2024

Football fields are unique because they’re one of the largest playing surfaces for any sport. Football fields are often the point of interest when driving by a high school. Lined with bright lights and bleachers, football fields can be seen far away. But how long is the football field, and how did it get its dimensions?

A football field of play is 100 yards (300 feet) long and 53.3 (180 feet) yards wide. The field is 120 yards (360 feet) long, including the end zones.

In this article, we will look at all the measurements of a football field and why you should learn the yard lines on the field.

Football Field Dimensions

The football field dimensions are unique because of its many lines. It has yard lines, goal lines, hash marks, and boundary lines.

Youth, high school, college, and professional leagues all play on the same field, the only variable being how wide the hash marks are.

Field Of Play

Football fields are 120 yards long (from the back of the endzone to the back of the other endzone) and 53.3 yards wide.

Initially, football fields were measured in feet. It became easier to track everything in yards rather than feet through the years. These numbers come from (360 feet divided by 3, which equals 120 yards, and 160 feet divided by 3, which equals 53.3 yards.

The length and width of the football field do not change, no matter what level is being played. Also, the number of players on the field doesn’t change, as it’s always 22, or 11 on each team.

If you’re looking for how the point system works in football, read here.

Why Are Football Fields 53.3 Yards Wide?

The football field is measured 53.3 yards wide. The 53.3 yards wide is because it’s 160 feet converted into yards. To convert the initial measurement of 160 feet into yards, you must divide by 3. 160 divided by 3 equals 53.3 yards wide.

These measurements may seem random, but remember, the field was initially measured in feet and later converted into yards.

The entire width of the field is measured from both boundary lines.

Hash Marks On a Football Field

hash marks in football

The one thing that does change is the hash marks. The hash marks are the white lines that stretch vertically up the field. As the player gets older, the hash marks get closer together. This makes it harder for the offenses, as the ball is played more in the middle of the field.

The NFL football field uses closer hash marks, college football fields scale down less, and high school football fields have the widest hash marks.

Here is a chart of how the hash marks change:

  • Youth And High School: 17.8 yards from the sideline
  • College: 20 yards from the sideline
  • NFL: 23.6 yards from the sideline

These hash marks play a significant role in football. Teams who can get their best athletes in space will often have more opportunities for big plays.

As the hash marks get closer together (in college and the pros), the opportunities for big plays in space become limited. This is why the hash marks are closer together.

How Far Are The Numbers From The Sideline?

The large numbers on the field also play a vital role in spacing in football.

numbers on football field

The numbers in football play an important role, as coaches will use these numbers to align wide receivers.

The top of the numbers must be 9 yards from the sideline, while the bottom of the numbers typically measures 7 yards from the sideline.

The arrow next to the number helps signify which direction the numbers are going. There is only one 50-yard line on the football field, and the number counts down from 50.

Depending on which arrow is pointing, the referee, coaches, and players will be able to determine where the ball is based on which yard line and which side of the field it’s on.

Football scoreboard

The scoreboard often has an arrow telling the home fans where the ball is. The 1-yard line could be a good thing for the offense but a bad thing for the defense. This is why the arrows are necessary.

If you want to learn more about football rules, read here.

The Ultimate Football Guide

Why spend hours on Google and YouTube trying to learn football yourself? We’ve created a simple guide to help make you the smartest person in the room.

How Long Are The End Zones On A Football Field?

The end zones in football are 10 yards long and 53.3 yards wide.

The dimensions for the width of the endzone remain the same as the rest of the field. The end zone, however, is only 10 yards.

To score a successful touchdown, teams must cross the goal line or anywhere within 10 yards.

goal line in football

The goal line is the end zone’s start, often marked by a thicker white line than the other lines on the field.

The player must maintain possession of the football while crossing the goal line to score a touchdown.

Field Goal Post Dimensions

Along with the field changing when players get older, the field goal sizes also change. The field goal size changes make it harder for kickers to kick the ball through it with a field goal.

One consistent thing is the crossbar’s height. All crossbars are 10 feet high from the ground.

Here are the field goal size dimensions:

  • Youth And High School: 23.4ft wide
  • College: 18.6ft wide
  • NFL: 18.6ft wide

Keep Learning

The Ultimate Football Guide

Why spend hours on Google and YouTube trying to learn football yourself? We’ve created a simple guide to help make you the smartest person in the room.

Standard American Football fields are 100 yards long from goal line to goal line. Including the end zones, the football field is 120 yards long.

If you like learning about football, we recommend our Ultimate Football Guide. It has everything you need to increase your football IQ!

Learn more about football rules in the articles below.

The Complete Beginners Guide To American Football

How Many Points Is A Touchdown Worth In Football?

How Many Football Players Are On A Football Team? Learn The Players

The dimensions of a football field are important to all football players and coaches.

The football field’s length is 360 feet (120 yards), and the width is 160 feet (53.3 yards).

The hash marks are different based on the level. Youth, high school, college, and the NFL have different hash marks.

If you have questions about the football field, let us know in the comments below.

Our courses are designed to help you improve your football knowledge, regardless of your football experience level.

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About the author 

Chris Haddad

Chris Haddad is the founder of vIQtory Sports & high school coach for over 12+ years. He has been featured as an authority on Hudl, Bleacher Report and countless other football-centric platforms. Chris continues to study and provide valuable content for those looking to learn more about the game of football.