NFL Unplugged: The Brutal, Brilliant World of Professional Football by Anthony Gargano
John Wiley & Songs, Inc. 2010
NFL Unplugged tries to take the reader into the nitty-gritty world of the National Football League.
It primarily focuses on injuries, pain and the locker room, male-dominated hijinks of professional football players. In many instances, it relies on the stories of unnamed players, usually not the superstars, and we get a glimpse of their life in the trenches.
Unfortunately, this book fails on many fronts. First, there really isn’t anything new here.
None of the stories told are surprising. Many of them are the types of things we have heard from other sources.
Second, the writing relies too heavily on Philadelphia Eagles players. While players from other teams are included, there isn’t a lot of breadth in this book.
And finally, the writing is sometimes so over-the-top pretentious, it's laughable. The author tries to show off his erudite writing skills in a way that is, frankly, a little embarrassing.
It made for long, unnecessary “literary” attempts to tell stories that were best left unadorned with unnecessary verbiage. It tried to describe the guts, sweat and pain of professional football with ill-advised flowery language.
Overall, I more or less enjoyed this book, being a football fan. But I would not recommend it, nor would I felt I had missed out anything had I quit halfway through.