The 2021 NFL Playoffs are underway and we might see a game go into overtime with the Saints and Buccaneers game tied at 20 entering the fourth quarter. However, unlike the regular season, playoff games cannot end in a tie so the rules are a bit different. See below to find out how overtime works in the NFL playoffs according to the league’s official rulebook.
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How does Overtime Work in the NFL Playoffs?
- If the score is still tied at the end of an overtime period — or if the second team’s initial possession has not ended — the teams will play another overtime period. Play will continue regardless of how many overtime periods are needed for a winner to be determined.
- There will be a two-minute intermission between each overtime period. There will not be a halftime intermission after the second period.
- The captain who lost the first overtime coin toss will either choose to possess the ball or select which goal his team will defend, unless the team that won the coin toss deferred that choice.
- Each team gets three timeouts during a half.
- The same timing rules that apply at the end of the second and fourth regulation periods also apply at the end of a second or fourth overtime period.
- If there is still no winner at the end of a fourth overtime period, there will be another coin toss, and play will continue until a winner is declared.
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