Football Slang

Americans love their sports. Beyond watching them and playing them, they incorporate numerous sports expressions into everyday conversation, both at home and at work. Do you know these slang expressions that come from American football?

Expressions from the Video

armchair quarterback – someone who comfortably makes judgments from the side, without having any responsibility
end-run around – avoiding conflict or responsibility by going around the normal channels in the organization                                      blitz – an all-out attack, a campaign that is sudden and forceful                                                                                                                           drop the ball – not fulfilling one's responsibility on a task, harming the project (and annoying other shareholders)                         Hail Mary – a frantic, last-minute effort to salvage a project (with low-percentage chance of succeeding)

The above expressions are explained in terms of workplace conversations. To find out how they function in American football, ask one of your coworkers to explain.

Alan Headbloom

Alan advises Americans how to be global citizens and expats how to fit in to Michigan culture without annoying their native coworkers and clients. He also tweets and blogs at the intersection of language and culture. Over decades, he's traveled, studied, or lived on six continents, putting strange foods into his mouth and emitting strange sounds from it. His use of English, German, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Swedish, Hausa, and Japanese all improve with alcohol use. He gives invited public presentations on culture and unsolicited private advice on English grammar and usage; the latter isn't always appreciated. Visit his website for information on consulting, coaching, or speaking engagements.