Mid winter story time. Back alley football.

So far from CFL football season, time to reminisce. As kids growing up in the 50’s me and my two brothers would play what we called 3 man football in the back alley. Me, being the youngest would be the centre and receiver. My brothers would be the QB and DB. We would play for hours. Got to love DST. Anyone with similar stories.

My two best buddies and I in the Old South neighbourhood of London had a team we named the Skid Row Monsters. Since they were quicker than I was and could catch the ball better, they were the centres/slotbacks/tailbacks. I was taller and had the better knack for passing the ball which made me the QB. We would play any and all two to four kid teams, and we played either in public yards or across several unfenced backyards. We were pretty good relative to our competition and won the vast majority of our games.


I can’t remember the last time I saw kids or adults even playing catch with a football.

Really? I see it quite often down at Kitsilano Beach close to where I live in Van. Not so much on the sand but on the grassy (park) part of the beach. I pay close attention to whether they’re playing with an NFL or CFL ball. I’d say it’s about a 50/50 split.

yup for sure. Kits Beach…and I’m there quite a bit too. My bad.

…I grew up in the Calgary neighborhood of Capitol Hill which is directly east of McMahon Stadium…on game day lots of people would park on the streets and walk to the game…as games were often Saturday or Sunday afternoon affairs back then my friends and I would often mingle in the crowds walking to the stadium and then we’d play football on a stretch of grass at Crowchild Trail and 24th Avenue, within sight and hearing of the stadium…we’d play during the game and whenever the crowds roared for something special going on in the game we’d pretend it was because of something we did…

Used to play three-on-three or four-on-four on the lawn next to our high school when classes were done, fall and winter. (Spring, we switched to baseball.) None of this touch football either. Tackle, no pads. Only one broken bone all those years.

My favourite play was a crossing route coming off the small hill on one side. No one could cover me as I was the fastest guy. And if they cheated inside, I ran along the hill, cutting across after I was by the defensive player.

Something sad and poignant about this story. Did you have a dog and a raft too?

I was pleasantly surprised when I moved to Ottawa to see how many kids toss around footballs in the parks here.

When I was a kid, we’d either play schoolyard games with as many per side as we had. Or if there were just a handful of us, we’d play 500 in someone’s back yard.

…ha, it was a happy time, really…

My brothers and I would play football all the time on the farm when we were kids. Eventually dad would give us heck for playing football instead of working so we would have to go haul bales or cultivate or whatever else needed done on the farm.

From which I gather that it could not have been easy to pry the price of a ticket from your parents. I certainly would have had severe problems trying to accomplish the trick.


I played so much football that if I could remember it all, I could write a decent sized book about it.

The only thing I can think of that falls in line with this topic is when I was 12, give or take a year. I lived right beside a football field. The guy in the next house down stairs was a few yrs older than me and the guywho lived above him was a few yrs younger. Our two yards plus a third one had no fence at the time. We use to play across the 3 yards, just the 3 of us. Cant remember how we made it work. I think the older guy was always the QB. The younger guy would have been no match for me one on one. Guess we figured a way because I know we did it often.

500 ?? We use to play 500 baseball. Never heard of 500 football. How does it go?

Yuppers, 3 man football, we did the same, same receiver and center for different QB’s . I was the youngest and fastest so I got to run my B*g off lol. Late 60’s for me.

And, if it was just 2 of us we’d play “yards” for hours, or till our legs went numb. :smiley:

Pretty much the same as 500 baseball. The throws were not route-running or anything like that, just lobbed hail marys. Sometimes we’d go with punting instead of throwing. More contact and free-for-all scrums than you’d get using a baseball.

Played 2 against 2 tackle football (rushing only) in the park, with plastic helmet and hockey shoulder pads. The most fun was in the late fall when the ground (grass) was either snow covered or soft and muddy from rainfall. After a couple of hours on the wet field we headed home, with mud head to toe, and our white underwear soaking wet and brown. …undressed in the basement and clothes would magically appear clean a couple of days later.

You guys sounded hard-core right from the start of your description, and then I got to this part:

Gross. But I admire your dedication. :o

…used to do the same, punting primarily…we had a variation where the kicker/passer would call the points in the air and then, if no one could catch it in the air, you’d deduct -10 or -20 (whatever was agreed to) points every time the ball hit the ground, until it came to a rest then it would be worth so many points, like 25 or something…it was like the start of an XFL game with players scrambling to retrieve the ball regardless of where it was…

anybody ever play Yards with football punting?