PLAYING BOTH WAYS

What is PLAYING BOTH WAYS?

PLAYING BOTH WAYS meaning the same player playing offense and defense in a game; was more or less required by rules restricting substitution prior to World War II; suspended during the war because of lack of players; unlimited substitution was reinstated after a brief return to restricted substitution after the War; since the unlimited-substitution rule was adopted, players who play both ways have sometimes been referred to as “iron men” which must be a source of pride to those who played in the restricted-sub era when all players were required to be “iron men;” playing both ways is normal for part of each unit at the high school and youth levels, extremely rare at the college and pro levels

 

reference: John T. Reed: DICTIONARY OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL TERMS