Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Dark Side of the Game: My Life in the NFL by Tim Green

Sheesh, what is it with the titles on these football books? Here is yet another with an inaccurate title, this one obviously sensationalist. The title makes it sound like Green is going to tell us about shooting steroids in a teammate's ass or snorting coke out of a cheerleader's cleavage. Or maybe he's going to dig deep into a dark issue like brain damage or other lifelong physical woes of former players.

There isn't much darkness here, but The Dark Side of the Game is a pretty good book. Green played linebacker and defensive end for the Atlanta Falcons from 1986-1993 (the book is copyright 1996), and he has since written a couple dozen books, mostly fiction. This book is not his life story, though. Instead, it is a collection of essays about various aspects of the NFL, a mixture of recollections and opinions.

The Dark Side of the Game is a well-written and thoughtful survey of pro football circa 1995. Although a few chapters about particular players such as Deion Sanders date this book, I think most of it is still relevant today.

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