Next Man Up: A Year Behind the Lines in Today's NFL

Front Cover
Little, Brown, Sep 3, 2007 - Sports & Recreation - 512 pages
8 Reviews
In the NFL there is only one certainty: that every day, someone will have to be the Next Man Up. Football is an unrelentingly punishing sport, played and practiced at undiminished intensity, and it devours its players. Confronting injuries, trades, and the grim reality of competition, every NFL team prepares constantly for the likelihood--the certainty--that even franchise players can go down at any time. And someone new must be ready, trained, and primed to step in at the highest level.
Bestselling sportswriter John Feinstein persuaded one NFL team to lift the extraordinary secrecy that shrouds the sport and let him see how a team operates at the closest level. One team let him join every practice, every coaches' meeting, every players' gathering, every strategy debate. From the give-and-take of draft day, into the grinder of summer training camps, and from 100-degree practice games to the last game in frigid conditions, Feinstein reveals how a football team works--or fails to work--as no writer has done before.
Next Man Up unveils rituals (what a coach tells a player at the moment he cuts him); rules (the inanities of league-appointed "uniform Nazis"); conflicts (the scouts vs. the coaches, the general managers vs. the agents, the offense vs. the defense, the special teams coaches vs. everybody); money (how much a journeyman makes, and how his life differs from the multi-million-dollar-a-year star players)-every nuance of a team's life, from the owner's goals to the coach's day-to-day travails to the feeling of the sleet-soaked ball in the hands of a receiver on artificial turf.
The access John Feinstein enjoyed allows him to discuss with equal understanding the owner's management strategy, the coaches' and coordinators' plans for each new game, and how it all affects the players themselves. Anyone who loves football--any team, in any era--will savor the thousands of details revealed here for the first time, and the extraordinary drama that goes into following week after week, the most sensational sport in America.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - sammii507 - LibraryThing

I quite enjoyed this book. It was long, and a detailed read, but for a football fan bored of sports in the off-season, it was entertaining and educational. I am not a Ravens' fan, but I found myself ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Anniik - LibraryThing

I quite enjoyed this book. It was long, and a detailed read, but for a football fan bored of sports in the off-season, it was entertaining and educational. I am not a Ravens' fan, but I found myself ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

John Feinstein was born in New York City on July 28, 1956. He graduated from Duke University. He is a sportswriter, author, and sports commentator. He was on the staff at the Washington Post and wrote for Sports Illustrated. He is the author of several books including A Season on the Brink, Where Nobody Knows Your Name, A Good Walk Spoiled, and The Legends Club: Dean Smith, Mike Krzyzewski, Jim Valvano, and the Story of an Epic College Basketball Rivalry.

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