Football Summer School: Suggestions for Reading Material on the Game We Love


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A good Friday evening talker, I’d love to read what people would have to say on the subject. As for me, I would suggest When Pride Still Mattered, a biography on Vince Lombardi written by David Maraniss. I’ve found football’s purest spirit is found in the leaders of the men who played the game. Bill Walsh is a legend, and David Harris’ ‘The Gen­ius: How Bill Walsh Reinvented Football and Created an NFL Dynasty’ is an excellent read. I forget who writes it, but ‘Parcells: A Biography’ is awesome because, well, it’s about Bill Parcells.

I personally find the mentality of Lawrence Taylor to be one of the most fascinating pop psychology studies the world has ever seen, and any of his autobiographies is both eye-opening and shocking. If you really want to get into nuts and bolts, Steve Belichick’s book on football scouting is very interesting. It’s extremely dry and even the most die-hard fans will get bored at times, but it’s really fun to read what he’s writing and find the futures of lots of things between the lines. A true visionary. I’ve ranted about Paper Lion by George Plimpton before too.

Seeing as we all seem to be bored I thought I would let everyone in on a little project of mine.
I’ve been a fan of the NFL since I was knee high to a grasshopper, but I have never played anything more than backyard ball. Over protective parents, the Canadian fascination with hockey, and living in small town precluded any opportunity to even play in high school. As a result there are a few gaps in my football knowledge.
So during the football purgatory that is the spring and summer I have decided to become a better student of the great American game (in my book that’s football not baseball).
I recently finished Maryrose’s excellent “From Black to Gold” and have become even more of a Steelers fan. On the more technical side I have just picked up Jaworski’s The Games that Changed the Game. Can any of you recommend any high quality books or documentaries about the Steelers or the evolution of the game which we all love so much? There is a lot of dreck out there and I could use the help figuring out what is really worth my time.


Source: Behind the Steel Curtain

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