The types of Football facemasks are divided based on the cages and visors used. The important component of a facemask is the materials used.
American football is a contact sport that requires players to clash with each other to achieve a win. With athletic and physically strong players on both sides, it warrants a risk of body injuries.
The head is the critical part of the body and can lead to devastating health conditions if left unprotected. So, these face masks are utilized by every NFL and NCAAF player to protect their head from injuries from the ball and tackles.
Many brands have collaborated with the NFL to put their helmets and facemasks, creating a variety in 2023. Players and teams can choose from the available options and wear them to the football field.
Football Facemasks Types
The types of Football facemasks are divided into three categories: materials, cages, and visors.
If you get a facemask, it can be made up of three materials: carbon steel, stainless steel, and titanium.
Carbon steel is the heaviest of the three and will also be the least expensive one. They will have good but less durability compared to the other two.
The Stainless Steel facemask is moderate in weight of the three materials. They will also be comparatively less expensive than titanium but is costlier than carbon steel. Its durability also sits in the middle of the three.
This facemask type can be considered the balanced type for an average person looking to invest in their football interest.
The titanium facemask is the lightest of the three and is also the most expensive. However, its high cost comes due to the great durability it offers.
There are two facemask types that players can choose to play with: closed cage and open cage.
A closed-cage facemask features the face area being protected, especially the eyes and oral portion. This type will offer maximum protection to its user but compromise the field of vision.
The close-cage mask is recommended for players who constantly deal with tackles and blocking, like the full-bak, linebacker, and defensive and offensive linesmen.
The open cage facemask will be around the eye area to maximize the field of vision. Protection will be less than the closed-cage one but will offer more room to be aware of the players on the field.
This open cage facemask is recommended for players who pass and receive the ball, like the Quarterback, Wide receivers, and Kickers.
Another type of face mask is categorized based on whether the players utilize visors on their facemask.
Incorporating the visor in your facemask is not compulsory, but some players prefer to use them.
The purpose of the visors is to protect your eyes from direct sunlight and dust particles.
Visors can be clear or tinted. Both will offer protection. The clear one can be used to play both day and night, whereas the tinted one will be good to use during the daytime only.
The tinted visor also offers another advantage, i.e., the opponent cannot see your eyes, which can help disguise your plans. For instance, a defender will have difficulty locating who the tinted-visored QB is seeking to pass the ball to since they cannot follow his eyes.
Football Facemasks Styles
Many brands like Riddell, Schutt, and Xenith make football facemasks that have been allowed by the NFL.
The NFL officially has banned wild facemasks that feature nonstandard or overbuilt designs. The sport also banned single-bar helmets in 2004. However, some players could wear it due to the grandfather clause. The last person to wear it was Scott Player of the Cleveland Browns in 2007.
The NFL referees will also remove any facemasks that can cover the player’s eyes. Every facemask should provide clear vision, and the steel should not interfere with the eyes in any form.
With the improvement of technology day by day, new facemasks have been introduced. Some of them are:
Schutt Sports Vengeance
Schutt Sports is one of the world’s leading football facemask and helmet manufacturers in the United States.
This facemask has carbon steel material and offers good durability. Its brow design also is useful for maintaining a good vision.
This design also covers the oral portion with double vertical bars laterally and has four vertical lines upwards to protect the jawlines.
The Riddell Speedflex facemask is made up of stainless steel. It is available for all sizes, youth or adults.
It is highly durable and offers tight protection to the jaws and mouth region.
It is sturdy and offers tight protection for the players. However, the speed flex facemasks cannot be used with other companies’ helmets.
Xenith Prime Facemask
Xenith Prime offers great facemasks that have high durability.
This mask is ideal for quarterbacks and wide receivers since it has an open cage. It is also made up of carbon steel.
The eye area is wider and has a single steel line running upwards, right at the middle of the mouth. However, protective bars are on the sides to protect players’ jaws.
Schutt F7 LTD Titanium
Schutt F7 LTD is built from Titanium and is specifically made for its helmet. Thus, it will not apply to other helmets.
It has an eye and oral protection and integrates with the LTD helmet to lessen the absorption during frontal clashes.
This facemask is made for adults and contains extra vertical bars on the sides of the facemasks to prevent fingers from poking through the mask.
Football Helmets Types
There are many types of Football helmets designed by brands like Schutt, Xenith, and Riddell.
Football players require facemasks to integrate with their helmets. Only then headgear will be complete, and the referees will allow them to play the game.
Some of the types of football helmets found in 2023 are:
Riddell SpeedFlex Helmet
This helmet weighs 2.5 kg and has PSIP research-based patented side impact protection. This helps to protect the mandible region of the face.
The flex system is engineered into the helmet’s shell to decrease the impact from tackles.
It also has a ratchet lock strap attachment system that allows easier adjustments while wearing it.
The Riddell Speedflex is also designed to accommodate different head shapes to maximize stability.
Schutt F7 VTD Professional Varsity Helmet
This helmet has an extensive, comfortable jaw pad configuration to provide better protection.
It utilizes the flexible resistance design as the back shelf improves the overall strength in critical situations. This design also aids in providing better absorption from impacts.
Schutt F7 VTD has a helmet stabilization system that uses internal and external mechanisms to give a ‘locked-in’ feeling inside the helmet.
However, Schutt F7 VTD is only compatible with titanium facemasks and the quarter turn screws to fit perfectly. It has an additional 3D Movement Tectonic Plates feature that maintains the helmet’s performance during rotational events.
Xenith Varsity Football Helmet
This helmet is produced by Xenith and contains a comfortable chinstrap for secured head movement.
It is also filled with compact shock absorption technology that protects the wearer’s head from impact during intense games.
This helmet features lightweight due to its polymer shell and can be paired with a titanium facemask.
This varsity helmet also features a cooling mechanism due to the large vents at the back and front to let the hot air exit from them.
Moreover, this helmet is highly rated for its safety and keeps the players balanced due to its light weightage.