A moment in which a defensive player manages to get a hand on a punt attempt to keep it from going downfield. A blocked punt can alter the flight of a punt, and on certain occasions will cause the ball to bounce behind the punter, allowing the defense a chance to recover the ball for superb field position or a touchdown. Teams will change their alignment prior to punt to increase their chance at a punt block.
The blocked punt is one of the most dramatic plays in football based on how quickly it changes the game. A blocked punt can dramatically change field position, and frequently leads directly to a touchdown when the blocked punt is recovered by a defensive player. Punt teams will line up extra blockers behind the line to minimize the chance of a defender coming free down the middle. Special teams units will often have punt block plays in their playbook that they call when they want to take a great chance at getting a block.