HL - LJ  CUSHION

For scrimmage downs, your initial position prior to the snap should be out of bounds
and on the line of scrimmage.

When a play starts toward you, your first movement should be directly back and
deeper into the out of bounds area.

This movement allows you to establish a "cushion" between you and the players
coming toward you and creates a wider view angle in which you can observe blockers,
and when necessary, the ball carrier.

It is not recommended that movement upfield or downfield along the sideline be utilized
as this severely restricts the officials view angle and positions him at the improper angle
to rule on this play.

If the play becomes dead inbounds, the official should move cautiously (walking or
slowly jogging) to the dead ball spot, stopping the clock if necessary, observing any
dead ball action as he moves.

If the play becomes dead as a result of the ball going out of bounds, the official should
establish, in his mind, the dead ball spot, stop the clock, and allow the pursuing players
to clear the area. The official should then move cautiously (walking or slowly jogging)
to the dead ball spot, observing any dead ball action as he moves. He should be facing
the out of bounds area when he stops.

In either case, the official must not put himself in any position where he may be injured.

Always move cautiously and be aware of player activity near you.

Stay wide and out of bounds and you will be safer and have a better opportunity to
observe the action you are responsible for.
                                
Eaifo2 - Notebook Mechanics