Watch A Football Life

A Football Life is an Emmy-nominated documentary series that was created and produced by NFL Films. It was originally planned as a single documentary film profiling legendary football coach Bill Parcells. After the success of that initial program, the NFL Network began to air it as an episodic series.

The show is notable for going into deep detail about a football player's life, often following his career from childhood leagues to college and eventually to the pros. The show features vintage footage and interviews as well as observations from league officials, family members, teammates, coaches, industry insiders and sports writers. When possible the show would also have new in-depth recent interviews with the subject themselves.

Not all of the subjects were players. Several coaches were profiled as well. A few episodes covered certain groups of players or notable NFL moments. The Los Angeles Rams' famous defensive line the Fearsome Foursome were profiled as a group, and one episode details a 1972 game between the Oakland Raiders and Pittsburgh Steelers. That game was historic because it featured one of the single most famous plays in the league's history, the Immaculate Reception. Philadelphia Eagle teammates Reggie White and Jerome Brown were profiled as a pair. One interesting episode of A Football Life featured an entire franchise and city when it profiled the city of Cleveland and the 1995 Browns team. NFL Films also had an episode that paid homage to the company's president and founder, Ed Sabol.

In addition to those special editions the show has also featured episodes about NFL superstar players, owners and coaches from the past and the present such as Tom Landry, Bill Belichick, Reggie White, Walter Payton, Kurt Warner, Mike Ditka, Tim Tebow, Ray Lewis, Al Davis, Steve McNair, Jimmy Johnson, Eddie DeBartolo Jr., Tom Coughlin and Barry Sanders.

Wednesday 8:00 PM et/pt on NFL Network
8 Seasons, 101 Episodes
August 29, 2011
Documentary & Biography, Family, Sports, Talk & Interview
8.6/10
Cast: Jenn Brown, Troy Aikman, Bill Belichick, Jimmy Johnson
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A Football Life Full Episode Guide

  • Two different personalities, two separate paths, one shared drive for greatness: the rivalry, friendship and artistry of Pittsburgh Steelers Hall of Fame receivers Lynn Swann and John Stallworth.

  • Passed over by every NFL team, John Randle's madcap antics vaulted the undrafted free agent from rags to riches and stardom with the Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks.

  • A look at Aeneas Williams's long journey from college walk-on to Hall of Fame defensive back to pastor in Ferguson, Mo.

  • Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is profiled.

  • Hall of Fame Head Coach Joe Gibbs tries to balance his personal and professional life while building the NFL’s most diverse dynasty.

  • A profile of running back Eddie George, who played football for Ohio State and the Tennessee Titans.

  • A profile of Larry Fitzgerald, a man who's caught more than 1,000 passes, scored more than 100 touchdowns and visited nearly 100 countries.

  • How does a man emerge a champion after a life filled with loss? Leading the Buffalo Bills to four straight Super Bowls is only part of Jim Kelly’s legend.

  • He was once deemed too short to play in the NFL, but Sam Mills became an All-Pro and built a legacy that still looms larger than life.

  • Undersized and unwanted, Wes Welker overcomes obstacles to re-define the role of the slot receiver in the NFL.

  • The many football lives of Raiders Hall of Fame coach, broadcaster, commercial star and video game pioneer John Madden.

  • Emmitt Smith makes an indelible impact on the game of football and builds a case as the greatest running back of all time by breaking one of the NFL's hallowed records and making everyone around him better.

  • The singular talent and legacy of Hall of Famer Dan Marino, The Quarterback’s Quarterback.

  • Documenting the lives of NFL players, coaches, owners and teams.

  • The story of the boisterous sackmaster who blitzed his way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

  • After 18 NFL seasons, one of the game's greatest defensive backs finally retires and tells his story.

  • The undaunted leader of the Cowboys dynasty reveals the hidden struggles of his football life.

  • A revealing look at the legendary yet largely unknown head coach who built the Steelers dynasty of the '70s.

  • An intimate look at the mercurial wide receiver as he recovers from a career-threatening injury and reflects on a spectacular career.

  • The football life of perhaps the greatest player in NFL history and his impact both on and off the field.

  • The most exciting player of his generation relives his rise, fall and long road to redemption.

  • The extraordinary life and legacy of the Arizona Cardinal who left the NFL to defend his country after 9/11.

  • Brett Favre"™s incomparable journey from Kiln, Mississippi to Green Bay to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

  • The long climb to the top for Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young, as told by Young himself through excerpts from his autobiography.

  • The unpredictable life of the endzone dancing, trash talking, name-changing receiver who was "always open".

  • The inspiring story of Curtis Martin, who rose from the streets of Pittsburgh to become a Hall of Fame running back.

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A Football Life Video Clips & Extras

Mike Singletary | 'A Football Life': Old School Intensity | NFL Clip (04:55) Mike Singletary | 'A Football Life': The Quarterback on Defense | NFL Clip (04:42) Bruce Arians "The QB Whisperer" Tutors Peyton Manning & Big Ben | A Football Life | NFL Network Clip (03:14) Charles Haley "The Elephant in the Room" | A Football Life | NFL Clip (02:39)