a. No player wearing illegal equipment or failing to wear mandatory equipment shall be permitted to play. (Exception:Rule 1-4-5b and c)
b. If an official discovers illegal equipment, or if a player is not wearing mandatory equipment, the player must leave the game for at least one down and is not allowed to return until the equipment is made legal. The player may be allowed to return without missing a down if the team takes a charged team timeout, but in any event the player may not play with illegal equipment or without mandatory equipment.
Approved Ruling 1-4-8 I. After the ball is ready for play, an official identifies a player(s) who is obviously not wearing a mouthpiece. RULING: The player(s) must leave the game for at least one down and may not return until properly equipped with a mouthpiece. The player(s) may remain in the game by spending an available team timeout, but they may not play until properly equipped.
Approved Ruling 1-4-8 II. Late in the first half, Team B has used its three timeouts. At the end of a play the line judge notices that B44, a player who participated in the previous play, is equipped with an eye shield that is either tinted or not clear. RULING: Equipment violation. B44 must leave the game for at least one down and may not return if he is wearing an illegal eye shield.
c. If equipment becomes illegal through play, the player is not required to leave the game for one down, but the player may not participate until the equipment is made legal.
Approved Ruling 1-4-7 II. At the end of a down, B55’s shoulder pad has become exposed and is not covered by the jersey. RULING: Illegal equipment. Because the pad became exposed through play, B55 is not required to leave the game. The pad must be covered by the jersey before the ball is next put into play.
Approved Ruling 1-4-8 III. When the ball is dead after a scrimmage down, the Umpire notices that linebacker B55 has an exposed back pad at waist level, which apparently became exposed through play during the previous down. RULING: B55 is not required to leave the game, but he must cover the exposed pad with his jersey before the next down.