Best football books according to redditors

We found 419 Reddit comments discussing the best football books. We ranked the 179 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Football:

u/lunkavitch · 31 pointsr/nfl

For how to appreciate the game more, Take Your Eye Off The Ball.

For a great narrative from a player's perspective, Slow Getting Up.

u/LarcusMywood · 24 pointsr/nfl

Here's a good book called "Keep Your Eye Off The Ball." It's always raved about here on /r/nfl, and it pretty much teaches you how to watch football properly.

It's definitely not for beginners. I've given up on the book in several parts as I'm still a relatively new fan, but what I have got from it is great.

u/mistynick · 19 pointsr/CFB

there's a great book on that team. A Civil War by John Feinstein. link below


u/corduroyblack · 18 pointsr/nfl
u/DonutDonutDonut · 17 pointsr/buffalobills

Welcome to the best fanbase in football!

  1. I really enjoyed the book Take Your Eye Off the Ball, sounds like what you're looking for.
  2. This subreddit and Buffalo Rumblings are my go-tos. I also like to listen to WGR 550 (Buffalo's sports talk station) when I get the chance.
  3. Need a little more clarification here - what do you mean by "keep an eye on"? Probably the biggest question a lot of fans have right now is what we're going to do at quarterback this offseason - will Tyrod start next year? Will we draft someone and/or sign a free agent QB, and if so, who? Etc.
  4. For getting a feel for the team, watch the "Four Falls of Buffalo" documentary produced by ESPN. It's about Buffalo's famous four consecutive trips to the Super Bowl in the early 90's. As for specific games, The Comeback is one very famous example; others will have more suggestions I'm sure.

    Go Bills!
u/SuperSaiyanSandwich · 17 pointsr/nfl
u/RedditsOnlyBlackMan · 16 pointsr/nfl
u/Jurph · 11 pointsr/nfl

I usually find this Wikipedia article very helpful. Your English is excellent so I don't think you need to worry about finding a translation. Scroll down to "offensive formations" and the sections on "running plays" and "passing plays" to understand the terminology and how to understand what you're seeing. The great part about that is that if you then search for those plays on YouTube you can find video of the play working well.

I also like to recommend Take Your Eye Off the Ball to new fans interested in Xs and Os. It's an excellent book about how to watch football and understand what's happening -- it explains how an offensive formation is like a "bid" or "bet" in cards, and the defense's formation is a reaction to that bid, and how either side might be bluffing. It goes into excellent detail about almost every aspect of the game.

Give this article a read as well. Chris Brown helps the reader understand the fundamental shift in the current defensive era, which I think will really help you understand what (for example) the Seahawks do on defense. If you like Brown's work, he has also published this book of essays (edited and expanded from his blog) which explain many of the strategic and tactical nuances of the modern game of football in a style similar to what you see in the above article.

u/TheManWhoWas-Tuesday · 11 pointsr/nfl

The negative reviews are, if anything, even weirder.

They can't seem to shut up about crab legs (the cover also mentions the crab leg thing) and are all written in the same really weird style.

I think this fellow might have actually written all the negative reviews of his book too, for whatever demented reason.

u/bob_3002 · 10 pointsr/nfl
u/king_of_penguins · 10 pointsr/nfl

>the famous 4th Down study that introduced the idea of expected points

Not sure which study that is, but Expected Points were introduced no later than 1988, when The Hidden Game of Football was published.

u/thehbrwhammer · 10 pointsr/nfl

American Football Coaches Association has a series of books that are very instructional:

u/SundayKegger · 9 pointsr/nfl

Here's a book I recommend for anyone wanting to learn the strategy behind football. It's called "Take Your Eye Off the Ball" written by Pat Kirwan with a foreword by Pete Carroll and Bill Cowher

It's on Amazon for $2.12 used - Can't beat that.

u/polydorr · 9 pointsr/CFB

> Good no huddle coaches make good no huddle teams.

Yep. That's why I'm glad we got the guy who literally wrote the book.

u/thehockeychimp · 9 pointsr/nfl

I think there's one called "Get your eye off the ball". Not sure if it's the right title.


u/Gauchoparty · 8 pointsr/argentina

Una amiga viaja a NY y me va a traer estas dos bellezas:
Take Your Eye Off the Ball y The Essential Smart Football así que voy a tener para hacerme una panzada!.

Por otro lado, mañana PARTIDASO de la NBA, Boston vs. Golden State, no puede fallar.

Finalmente, este fin de semana hay PPV de lucha libre y no puedo estar más hypeado, hace tiempo que no venía tan manija y encima cierra todo con un lunes feriado, fiesta loca. Ah y WARGAMEEEEEEEES BAYBEH.

Perdonen que vengo atrasado con el post, pero estoy con tanto laburo que se me re pasó, mil gracias /u/blackfinwe !

u/SirKolbath · 8 pointsr/WhereAreAllTheGoodMen

> You will benefit from this post.

This always makes me think of one of the most eye opening books on coaching football I have ever read: The Hidden Game of Football. The authors analyzed the statistics of more than four thousand professional football games and discovered some harsh truths. For example, going for it on 4th and 3 or less is worth 2.4 points statistically per game. Punting in the same situation is only worth 1.6 points. Therefore it makes sense to always go for it in that situation as the cost of not getting a first down is outweighed by the reward for doing so successfully.

Along with that, one statistic they presented was that coaches who bring newly drafted quarterbacks along slowly lose games and those quarterbacks are almost never worth the time and energy put into their development. New quarterbacks who will become franchise players (Brady, Montana, Marino, Elway, etc) Are generally on grass within five games of their entry to the league. If they are not capable of leading the team after that, they should be traded for draft picks.

To translate: maturity is a myth in professional football. Either a player can play from the outset or they can’t. Statistically speaking, if they can’t, cut them after five games and move on.

Same with women. If she can’t hit the seam and read the zone blitz by game five, cut her ass for draft picks.

u/[deleted] · 8 pointsr/nfl

My friend, a fellow Brit, bought Football For Dummies by Howie Long when he was getting into the game. I gave it a read through and thought it was pretty good, a tiny bit out of date here and there on things like OT rules but nothing major. I'd recommend it to newbies with $12.

u/Stan_Mikitas_Donuts · 8 pointsr/barstoolsports
u/ma6ic · 8 pointsr/CFB

I'm reading Meat Market right now. Very interesting read. If you haven't read it, it's about Orgeron's revitalization of the program. Written well.

u/DoctorWhosOnFirst · 7 pointsr/CFB

Take Your Eye Off The Ball is another good one. It is focused on the NFL though. Written by Pat Kirwan, a former coach and scout.

u/EastPowdermilk · 7 pointsr/CFB

Pat Kirwan's "Take Your Eye Off the Ball: How to Watch Football by Knowing Where to Look" helped me out a ton. It's NFL-focused, and not defense-specific, but the concepts translate. I adored this book. It's absolutely worth every cent.

u/FuckLarryBird · 7 pointsr/nfl

This book was pretty helpful. It isn’t too long and it’s not a bad read. It breaks down the basics of formations and play types. It helps you understand and figure out a teams game plan while you’re watching the game. I haven’t read it in a while so I don’t remember everything it gets into but you see the game differently after you read it. Definitely doesn’t get into everything but it’s a pretty good start.

u/exlaxbros · 6 pointsr/nfl

Great book that explains this (and a lot more) in detail for the layperson. Go to the "Look Inside" deal and see page 31, he breaks down/diagrams out a call and shows how the pattern works.

u/devineman · 6 pointsr/soccer

I posted this in the past to the same question:

Well there's a massive picture book type thing called A Photographic History of English Football which should be recommended more often than it is. It's one of those Guinness Book of Records sized books that might have trouble fitting on a shelf but it covers every aspect of the history of the English game (and thus the history of football itself). The pictures are extremely good too, especially the ones from the 1900s.

For a more in-depth study of football across the world, Simon Kuper's Football Against the Enemy is definitely one of my favourites though it's a little outdated now. However, Kuper travels round Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas interviewing key personnel in some of the bigger Clubs in the area and tells their history. His chapter on Dynamo Kiev and their Cold War era function as a funnel between East and West is worth the price of the book alone in my opinion.

In terms of autobiographies, I have always recommended Sir Bobby Robson's Farewell but not Goodbye as he tells the story of his journey from working in a coal mine in North East England to playing for his country and eventually nurturing the talents of some of the most important people in football now on and off the pitch. Most of all his personality shines through and the man is a hero to me and many others.

If you want a more technical autobiography then Rinus Michel's Teambuilding is the go to standard. Not strictly an autobiography and more a technical book but he intersperses it with his own experiences and you really get the feeling of how the greatest coach in the history of the game came to believe the things that he did.

If you like quirky but thought provoking books then Football and Chess might pique your interest. I'm a great believer in the vast similarities between chess and football on a tactical level and the author shared the same sentiment. Not the best written book in the world but it's gets your noggin ticking over and makes you reassess your ideas on the game which is always the best thing a book can really do for you.
Also as a fan of Italian football and culture, Gianluca Vialli/Marcotti's book The Italian Job is one of my favourite football books ever and extremely thought provoking on the differences in the football cultures in England and Italy and how both can learn from each other.

On the psychological side, I've recently read Inside the Mind of a Manager which was interesting. I can't say that I agreed with all of the conclusions and think the quotes were a little cherry picked but it's a good read for people who want to know more about what the modern manager actually does for a living and the people interviewed for the book are some of the best maangers alive today.

Lastly, if you really want to look at the business side of the game and how it is changing then I would recommend Ferran Soriano's book GOAL! The Ball doesn't go in by chance. Soriano is Man City's current CEO and former Barca CEO so he's certainly been there and done it on the business front and many of his ideas ion that book are beginning to be realised now. He recently did a lecture about it which skimmed over the ideas but the book delves into it deeper and tells stories from his time at Barca.
If you want more of a narrative and less of a business lecture then former Crystal Palace Chairman Simon Jordan's book, Be Careful What You Wish For is an excellent read. Be aware that Jordan is obviously bitter about his time at Palace and tries to settle some old scores here but outside of that it's a semi interesting look at his time at the Club and the problems he faced in implementing his business strategies.

u/ThatKindOfGeek · 6 pointsr/nfl

Take Your Eye Off the Ball: How to Watch Football by Knowing Where to Look

u/seagalogist · 5 pointsr/nfl

best football book of all time written by this guy: "The Thinking Man's Guide to Pro Football".

I had to find an old beaten up copy second hand years ago, I don't know if it's easier to find now. Looks pretty expensive on here

u/Rapsca · 5 pointsr/CFB

Buy some football books, start reading websites that cover strategy like Smart Football and what has helped me is that I have games from last year recorded and I'll just watch one position or maybe a few and see what they do on every play (helps with patterns and technique, therefore possible plays). Also what you can do is document football plays as you watch, as explained in Take Your Eye Off the Ball and you start noticing patterns and plays better. That is a start.

u/jusjerm · 4 pointsr/CFB

Meat Market


The System

Are cool reads on the subject

u/Liebo · 4 pointsr/booksuggestions

I've read a lot of nonfiction sports books. When a decent writer covers a fascinating sports topic they can be pretty hard to beat. Some of my absolute favorites:

Play Their Hearts Out by George Dohrmann Phenomenal story that shows the insanity of elite high school basketball and the recruiting machine.

Bringing the Heat by Mark Bowden Fly on the wall account of the Philadelphia Eagles' 1992. Some great insights into players like Jerome Brown, Randall Cunningham, and Reggie White and Bowden (who also wrote Black Hawk Down) describes on and off-field action very well.

Soccernomics by Simon Kuper and Stefan Szymanski A mix between Freakonomics and Moneyball as it relates to international soccer. If you have any interest in soccer or international sports/business its definitely worth a read.

Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby Reflections on intense fandom from a novelist. Soccer-related (and unfortunately this book is the reason why I am now stuck supporting Arsenal) but Hornby's musings definitely apply across sports.

Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer Journalist returns to his Alabama roots to follow the Tide's football season in an RV amongst die hard fans. Great book about fandom and a chronicle of a season.

Pacific Rims by Rafe Bartholomew Just finished this one. Filipinos are obsessed with basketball and this book describes the depths of the national obsession as well as covering the 2007 season of the Alaska Aces in the Philippines Basketball Association. Asian professional basketball is a bit different than its NBA cousin and I found the book to be incredibly interesting.

u/becausetv · 4 pointsr/AskAnAmerican

Only the British...

If you're interested in the service academies, or just want to gain insight into the American psyche, I strongly recommend A Civil War: The Army-Navy Game by John Feinstein. Amazon sells it, including a digital copy. No football knowledge required; the book is about the insular, rarely-seen culture of the two schools, and about the incredible young people who put themselves through four years of hell for the privilege of serving their country and leading their fellow servicemembers.

u/Brutish · 4 pointsr/CFB
u/nikolifish · 3 pointsr/CFB

Along similar lines, Gus Malzahn wrote a book about his offense. It's similar to what you describe but a slight variant of that.

Also, While not a new trend, or even as popular as the ones you described, the air raid offense is one of my favorite trends. It flourished mostly in the 80s under Lavell Edwards at BYU but itis still used today, notably by Mike Leach at Washington State.

u/rjw214 · 3 pointsr/bassfishing

Not a documentary but a book series - In-Fisherman's Critical Concepts, particularly the first book, "Largemouth Bass Fundamentals." The book was published in 2002 so is a bit dated but has a bunch of pertinent info with the most useful (to me) being bass tracking studies over fairly long periods of time. There's other information in the book that doesn't cover a full life cycle but, overall, it's the most comprehensive work I've seen that generally doesn't rely on what I call fishing bro-science.

The other thing you can do is chat up an ichthyologist or a fishery manager at a hatchery. I assume all states (provinces, territories, etc) have people who fill these roles and they LOVE talking about fish (seriously, get ready for a new best friend). It can take a few phone calls and a little bit of persistence but those guys and gals are a wealth of information once you track them down.

u/losferwords · 3 pointsr/nfl

Playing MAdden is okay, but I find it hard to believe nobody has suggested actually reading a book other than the rule book.
Check these out:
Take your Eye off the Ball

Blood, Sweat, and Chalk

u/Leland_Stamper · 3 pointsr/humor

American football is a complicated game. My wife learned the game by reading Football for Dummies. In my experience it is the best way to get a good understanding of the game and it starts from scratch.
Baseball or basketball would be much easier to learn. Even young children pick up on basebally quite fast.

u/MitchellTrueTittys · 3 pointsr/nfl

Not sure - can't really find the author's name. Heres a link to it on Amazon though.

Defensive Football Strategies (American Football Coaches Association)

u/tammrak · 3 pointsr/Gunners

So has everyone seen the amazing new book, One Step from Glory:Tottenham Hotspur's Champions League Campaign 2018/19?

The author.

Available on amazon. It's #1854 on the amazon bestsellers list. Pop on over to read the reviews. There's only a couple so far.

u/JeBron_Lames23 · 3 pointsr/CFB

Gus Malzahn wrote a book about his offensive philosophy when he was still coaching high school.

u/CrazyPlato · 3 pointsr/changemyview

You're probably right that those sports won't be around for long, now that we know about the injuries caused by them. However, if you think that's the end of those sports, you're probably off.

I want to use football as the example here. Before the 1900s, Football was a lot like rugby (which Americans see now as "football, but super violent because they don't use pads"). Obviously, safety gear was less effective and less common, but also the sport had a history then of violence based on common tactics used by teams at the time (turns out, large masses of people bashing into each other like a mosh pit at a concert isn't healthy in any context). In 1905, the body count of the sport hit an all-time high of 19 deaths that year from playing football. And as this sport was played by young men in college, some were worried about the risks to the health of their children and loved ones who played the game. President Theodore Roosevelt actually threatened to shut down football as an organized sport if changes couldn't be made to make the game safer (note that while Roosevelt definitely called for changes to be made, historians dispute that he threatened to close the whole thing down. But I digress). Several fundamental changes to the game were made at that time, including banning "mass formation plays", banning interlocked arms and legs as a way to stop oncoming players, and introducing the forward pass as a legal play. The result was a game that was, in many ways, different from football at the time, but was much safer as it widened the field of play and prevented the massive concentrations of bodies that led to the worst injuries in the game.

Now, let's get back to the point here. What I'm saying is that yes, if the sports you mention are going to continue, they'll have to change drastically in common-sense ways to prevent injuries for the players. But at the same time, that doesn't have to mean that the sport is "doomed". We've made changes to the games in the past, and there's no reason we couldn't do it again and still call the game football (or boxing, or MMA).

EDIT: There's actually a published work that talks about those football reforms, for those who are interested.

u/subdudeman · 3 pointsr/nfl

This book is a great resource. The dude knows the game.

u/5uper5kunk · 3 pointsr/bassfishing

The sadly out of print book series InFisherman Largemouth Bass Fundamentals are summary and used to be priced far more reasonably. I think the price on amazon fluctuates wildly, I got all three for like $10 each maybe 2-3 years ago and the last time I looked (maybe 4 months ago) they were still around that price. Otherwise, the InFisherman website has a lot of good articles with good illustrations so stuff like the difference between inside and outside weedlines are made clear. "In Pursuit of Giant Bass" is another great one and looks to be more available. I have also heard good things about "High Percentage Fishing" but have yet to pick it up.

I have yet to find any really good videos going over habitat/behaviour other then this great one about spawning, but I have not looked in a while. Otherwise I just did a lot of reading random bass forums. It's slow and there are many idiots out there but once you figure out who to listen too there is a ton of info out there.

u/Unpopular-Truth · 3 pointsr/CFB

Can someone give this book to whichever coach on Florida is responsible to teaching our players how to tackle.

u/HappierJack · 3 pointsr/eagles
u/charzan · 3 pointsr/Gunners

> I have read every book ever about Arsenal


I'm a bit of a book junkie, I can recommend a few you might not have come across:

The End: 80 Years of Life on the Terraces: 80 Years of Life on Arsenal's North Bank

We All Live in a Perry Groves World

True Storey: My Life and Crimes as a Football Hatchet Man

Fallen Idle

Bob Wilson: My Autobiography - Behind the Network


Battle of London: Arsenal Versus Tottenham Hotspur

The Real Arsenal: From Chapman to Wenger - the unofficial story

Rebels for the Cause: The Alternative History of Arsenal Football Club

Bob Wall - Arsenal From The Heart

Bernard Joy - Forward, Arsenal!

Steaming In

The Last Game: Love, Death and Football

... and for some proper old-school type stuff, have a look here where a very dedicated person has scanned full books that are out of print:

> Tom Whittaker's Arsenal Story
> Bernard Joy - Forward, Arsenal!
> One of the first books covering Arsenal's history. Published in 1952.
> George Allison - The Inside Story Of Football
> Arsenal Players' Souvenir Brochure for the 1947-48 Season
> Herbert Chapman On Football
> During the early 1930s Herbert Chapman contributed articles to The Sunday Express. This compendium of his articles was published shortly after his death.
> Joe Mercer - The Great Ones
> Jon Sammels - Double Champions-Playing The Arsenal Way

u/ArsenalOnward · 3 pointsr/Gunners

Surprised I haven't seen this one yet...

Rebels for the Cause

Great book about the history of Arsenal, from the very beginning.

u/nitram9 · 3 pointsr/nfl

Take your eye of the ball Quick read. Good explanation of everything related to the NFL that the common fan probably doesn't know.

Education of a Coach a Biography of Bill Belichick. Really good but a little out of date now. Still it's current up till 2004 or so and most of BB's life took place before that.

u/Boysterload · 3 pointsr/nfl

Get a book by Pat Kirwan called take your eyes off the ball:

u/Scrags · 3 pointsr/nfl

Not OP but here's a great resource if you're looking for a deeper understanding.

u/holymacaronibatman · 3 pointsr/nfl

Take your Eye Off the Ball is an excellent read that can help explain some of the more subtle things about football.

u/masivemunkey · 3 pointsr/nfl

The best way in my opinion is to join a fantasy league. Research who to pick, learn about the best players in the league, and then try to win.

The reason fantasy is such a good idea is that you'll start to follow your players and you'll want to watch a lot of different games to see how your players are doing. The rules are constantly explained during TV so by the end of the season you'll know pretty much as much as any casual fan.

If you want a crash course on in-depth football details (types of defense/offence and what each player's role is) there's a great book by Pat Kirwan that you should think about picking up:

u/bounderboy · 2 pointsr/Gunners

Rebels for the Cause.. alternative history - great football author too

u/InTupacWeTrust · 2 pointsr/nfl

Belichick the football master whatever test they give to players are top notch! I read on Take Your Eye off the Ball

u/relax_on_the_mat · 2 pointsr/CFB

It's a bit dated (1997), but Feinstein's Army/Navy book is pretty good.

u/ErrantGunner · 2 pointsr/Gunners

You're confusing Pace and Acceleration. Bergkamp was one of the faster (top 5) players in the squad over 60 Metres. That's how he was involved in many counter-attacking build up plays. This is a fact said by Arsene Wenger from time to time.

Watch a couple of highlight reels during his playing years. He catches up to everyone but Thierry Henry or Ashley Cole during a counter.

People don't magically reach their top speed instantly... He should have 80s pace, maybe 70s acceleration is baked into the engine. This is why I don't take video game stats seriously.

EDIT: If you'd like a source, feel free to buy a copy of The Italian Job. He was third in the club's 60 metre race during the Invincibles season (2003/2004). At 33 years of age.

u/thugmonkey · 2 pointsr/soccer

No, Everton left Anfield as they rent keep going up after they left Liverpool was formed. Everton was connected to the church. You should really read Red Men.

u/FeroxCarnivore · 2 pointsr/nfl

Chris Brown's Smart Football blog is pretty good. I also got a lot of mileage out of Take Your Eye Off The Ball and Blood, Sweat, and Chalk.

u/psilar · 2 pointsr/CFB

As I Canadian who moved to Austin for grad school and learned to love football, I sympathize with the need to find something that covers the basics!

Here's a site I linked to below that covers some basics:
... but even that might be too advanced.

If you're looking for complete basics, you might be better off with a book.
Take Your Eye Off the Ball is quite helpful for this, as it covers the basics of all the different positions and it gets into formations and a bit of strategy.:

Football for Dummies is even more basic, but it can be a good guide for the beginner:

u/Whismat · 2 pointsr/nfl

Since this stat is total adjusted yards, the multipliers convert every non-yardage value into yards. So touchdowns = 20 yards, interceptions = -45 yards, fumbles = -50 yards, etc.

All those values have been around since The Hidden Game of Football in 1988. Pretty much every advanced stat today utilizes those same multiplier values.

u/quickonthedrawl · 2 pointsr/Texans

Some good suggestions in here.

To add: Check out this book, Take Your Eye Off the Ball by Pat Kirwan. It's got a great breakdown for how to watch/analyze football when you're ready to go beyond just watching the QB, RB, and WRs.

u/fearyaks · 2 pointsr/nfl

I read the Blind Side too which was a strong read but my personal favorite was the one that Pat Kirwin (you can listen to him on Sirius NFL radio) put out last year. It's called Take Your Eye Off the Ball . It doesn't have as much history as it does strategies and coach/GM speak. A very good read though.

u/crwlr123 · 2 pointsr/nfl

I picked up this book myself and found it super interesting:

Take Your Eye Off the Ball: How to Watch Football by Knowing Where to Look

Definitely helped me understand not just the game on the field but also things around it, like drafts and contracts.

u/ferralumbro · 2 pointsr/chelseafc

A great comedy nonetheless-

One Step from Glory: Tottenham's 2018/19 Champions League

u/thewaiting28 · 2 pointsr/NFLNoobs,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch

I haven't found any channels that do a good job of starting with the basics, but this book does a great job. It's an easy read, starts with the basics and goes into great detail

u/dcunited · 2 pointsr/Texans

If you're looking to spend some money you can buy this book, but if you hang out around here long enough most of it will be covered at some point; it does organize everything though.

Like Wham said, it takes time/studying, but a lot of it is just terminology; "Cover" formations is, for the most part, just the number of safeties providing help over the top of the CBs to protect against the deep ball.

Even after you know what to look for, it can be baffling in real time.

u/ShrimpBoots · 2 pointsr/footballstrategy

Football Coaching Strategies will probably fit with what you want. It may be a little more offense-based that what you're looking for, though. I had it when I coached middle school football and found it to be a great resource.

Offensive Football Strategies and Defensive Football Strategies are more in depth. I would say they are your next step after digesting the information in the first book.

u/nimr0d · 2 pointsr/nfl

The more you watch the more you'll be able to see things out of your peripheral vision. Like when playing a video game you're shooting at someone while also looking at the radar at the same time.

Also if you're interested this book is really good:

u/simohayha · 2 pointsr/CFB

Teddy was an important figure because he was under a lot of pressure from institutional heads to reform the game. There was a book I read a few years ago called The Big Scrum the spoke about his involvement in this in length. Teddy may have helped bring about the talks that lead to the creation of the forward pass, but it was Harvard in the end that sealed the deal (pretty much all due to the fact that their brand new stadium was made of reinforced concrete).

u/ManOfOregon · 2 pointsr/CFB
u/aribrona · 2 pointsr/nfl
u/landraid · 2 pointsr/oaklandraiders
u/talon06 · 2 pointsr/nfl

[Take your eye off the ball] ( by Pat Kirwan is exactly what you're looking for

u/OedipusLoco · 2 pointsr/nfl

Take Your Eye Off The Ball is a great place to start!

u/alyosha_pls · 2 pointsr/ravens

Hey, I really recommend Pat Kirwan's book if you want to really get a good primer on how to watch and understand football.


u/numberthirtythree · 2 pointsr/nfl

This book helped me a lot

u/Boyhowdy107 · 2 pointsr/CFB

Stop watching the ball. But seriously though, I have some pretty successful sports writer friends who have a deeper knowledge of football than I ever will and that's the biggest piece of advice they give me. That book is pretty good, but to be honest, I still slip back into watching the ball and wonder why we don't call the "throw a touchdown play" more often.

Also, welcome to the journalism brotherhood. I cover politics, not sports, so hit me up should you need any advice on understanding the farm bill.

Edited for a typo that drove me crazy.

u/branchness · 2 pointsr/nfl
u/Jackwacker · 2 pointsr/CFB
u/Ajax_Malone · 2 pointsr/nfl

Paul Zimmerman's Thinking Man's Guide to Pro Football is a must read for serious fans. He does a step by step breakdown of the adjustments defenses and offenses have made from the start of the game to the 80s. It's a great basic starting point.

u/allsecretsknown · 2 pointsr/nfl

A good intro to understanding the game of football is Pat Kirwan's book, Take Your Eye Off The Ball.

Take his notes on the origins of zone blocking with a grain of salt, though.

NFL Game Rewind is also a fantastic resource, giving fans the ability to watch the same kind of film coaches do.

u/tron423 · 1 pointr/CFB

Fair enough. Still, he's about to go into his 8th year of running his offense at Auburn, and he literally wrote the book on hurry-up no-huddle offense.

u/mg591978 · 1 pointr/footballstrategy

The absolute best resource for getting started with a no huddle offense is Gus Malzahn’s book Hurry Up, No Huddle Offense. here’s the book

As far as practice plans and drills to get your kids able to execute that type of offense you can’t beat the Tony Franklin System. This is great stuff here

u/MrRoxx · 1 pointr/nfl

Football For Dummies 5e (USA Ed): Howie Long, John Czarnecki: 8601422003833: Books

u/tokeyoh · 1 pointr/nfl

I recommend reading this if you really want to understand the game. It puts perspective on a whole 'nother level.

u/Sartro · 1 pointr/nfl

I see this one recommended often in these threads. I have yet to pick it up myself, though.

u/feminaprovita · 1 pointr/nfl

I'm that weird person who's more of a reader than a gamer, and I, too, am trying to get more into the game. I've found the current edition of Football for Dummies to be a surprisingly good resource. Enjoy the journey! Love this sport.

u/bghs2003 · 1 pointr/nfl

Sounds like you may enjoy the Hidden Game of Football and it may help you with your formula.

u/weirderthanyou · 1 pointr/nfl

This book will lay it all out for you quite well

u/glatts · 1 pointr/nfl

First, look on YouTube for basic info. You can find videos about positions and plays and even schemes like the spread pretty easily.

Second, I recommend looking up some film breakdowns. Bill Belichick does them weekly (I think it's weekly) on a local Boston channel, but you can find some of them on YouTube by searching for Belichick Breakdown.

Third, try to find some guides for how to watch football and how to breakdown a game. Articles like this can provide you with a greater understanding of what everyone is doing during a play.

Fourth, do some reading.

I highly recommend Take Your Eye Off the Ball: How to Watch Football by Knowing Where to Look to help you while watching the game, but be sure to get the paperback version so you get all the diagrams. It will teach you the progression of the reads, the route running, the blocking and everything that happens on defense as well.

To help you cut through some of the jargon announcers use, I recomment Blood, Sweat and Chalk: The Ultimate Football Playbook.

If you want to learn more about strategies, try The Essential Smart Football.

To learn more about evaluating players, Football Scouting Methods is a must read. It will take you to the football of another era, but with the foundation from all the other info I've provided you will be able to start putting the pyramid together and learn how the game became what it was today.

u/kbergstr · 1 pointr/CHIBears

looks like someone's read Pat Kirwan's book-- totally recommend it to everyone who's into the game.

u/DreadSabot · 1 pointr/PS4

buy Pat kirwans book - it will help you understand the sport better:

It is possible to play the game, sure, but you will need to understand how offenses and defenses operate to really enjoy it, unless you play it on easy.

u/spectre3724 · 1 pointr/nfl

If you like the writing style of Michael Lewis, you need to check out this book. Lewis wrote a fantastic book on a way to look at baseball that no fan had ever seen before. He based his hugely successful baseball book on The Hidden Game of Football, now out of print but available used.

For pure storytelling, you have to read "When Pride Still Mattered". This biography of Vince Lombardi is nothing short of a masterpiece, and it's no surprise. It's written by a Pulitzer Prize-winning author in a style very different from most bio works.

u/BosskOnASegway · 1 pointr/CFB

The Big Scrum is one of my favorite football history books. It covers a lot of the early game and Teddy Roosevelt's influence on the game we play today.

u/Talidel · 1 pointr/chelseafc

If you really want to laugh at Spurs this isn't going anywhere.

u/Terarri · 1 pointr/LiverpoolFC

Red Men by John Williams is pretty great. Has such a good level of detail and research. Goes through the full LFC history.

Here it is on Amazon.

u/race_kerfuffle · 1 pointr/fantasyfootball

I started playing because I discovered the joy of football and wanted to get into it, and I figured fantasy would be a great way to learn about the sport/players/teams. It is. I've only been watching football for real for 3 full seasons, and I already know a lot about the sport. Obviously not compared to most or /r/nfl, but more than most people. So I'd say just jump right in.

One thing that was helpful during my first season was watching games with my roommate who knows a ton about football. We actually had free NFL Sunday Ticket at our place (for some reason, our landlord could add a second house onto his subscription? no idea but we didn't press the issue), so we'd sit there all Sunday and he'd explain things to me.

I've heard this book is great for learning more but I haven't gotten around to it.

Oh, also, when I first got into football (end of 2011 season), my friend played Madden with me and would explain things. That helped a ton. Before that I didn't really understand football. I knew about downs and stuff but nothing about the strategy, so playing Madden was really what made it click and that's when I fell in love with football. Actually, I just decided I'm going to pick up an Xbox so I can start playing Madden for real to get deeper into knowledge of routes and strategy, I feel like I've hit a wall based on what I learn watching games and reading about the game. I'm a girl so I never played football growing up except for just fucking around.

3 years later, I "have a football problem" according to my friends. And it's kind of crazy how much I've picked up in a short amount of time, but mostly that is because of fantasy.

u/bobby_runs · 1 pointr/nfl
u/AgitatedText · 1 pointr/nfl

there was also an interesting book about it, the big scrum. read it recently. it jumps around a lot, but tells the whole story.

u/Ardbeg66 · 1 pointr/dataisbeautiful

One of the reasons that NFL games are so difficult to watch is that TV coverage does a horrible job of covering what goes on between plays. Rather than listening to Buck & Aikman fellate Aaron Rogers yet again, they should cover more personnel changes and other between-play activities on the field. There's a lot going on, but they don't really talk about it much.

This is a good read, too:

u/djbuttplay · 1 pointr/nfl

Check out Matt Bowen's Football 101 stuff from when he was with Bleacher Report:

He's really good at explaining everything.

There are also some books that have been recommended quite a few times on this sub, like this one:

u/TheAlteredBeast · 1 pointr/Texans

So...saying that two specific play calls you meantioned were good means that I approve of the playcalls?

You're a dumbass.

Seriously, you seem to lack a very basic understand of football. We lost because of poor special teams play, and penalties that consistently put the offense behind the chains.

Click the link, buy the book, and learn something.

u/skittles_rainbows · 1 pointr/Teachers
u/ThePoorAlwaysLose · 1 pointr/49ers

This is typical of people who don't look at the body of work. You're likely the same person who thinks Baker is good.

After putting up 200yards on the ground I could throw the ball for the 49ers now. It's 2nd half, the Niners have run all game. They are up multiple scores, the throws are free now.

Read this:

You're welcome.

u/GrundleTurf · 1 pointr/nfl

If you like reading, this is a great book for people like you and still good for any NFL fan. I enjoyed it even though I read it at 30 years old and I've been watching football since I was 3.

u/Phayded · 1 pointr/nfl

Here is an excellent book to learn all the basics and some advanced stuff about football.

Take Your Eye Off the Ball

u/yellowstuff · 1 pointr/nfl

I dimly remember reading that one of the downfalls of the run and shoot was that in practice the team's defense never got reps against normal run formations. I think it was in Football For Dummies.

u/ediamond · 1 pointr/nfl
u/ILikeBigButtss · 1 pointr/CFB

A Civil War: Army Vs Navy is one of my favorites

u/52hoova · 1 pointr/CFB

There's also a book on it, if you're a reader:

The Big Scrum: How Teddy Roosevelt Saved Football

u/Rhypskallion · 1 pointr/nfl

The New Thinking Man's Guide to Professional Football. While this is an out of print book from 1985, it's brilliant, still relevant, and very well written.

u/71017 · 1 pointr/IWantToLearn

Get this book:

It is maybe 2-3 years out of date with the player names, but it will give you a good primer on what teams are looking to do, how they plan on doing it, and the back and forth between each coach as they try to decipher each others tendencies and play calls.

u/TheFencingCoach · 1 pointr/nfl

TL;DR there is a prominent Twitter troll called @Jameis1of1 who is a staunch Jameis defender and even wrote a 400 page book called Jameis Derangement Syndrome. A sports podcast did some sleuthing and found an uncanny resemblance in Jameis1of1 and Jason Licht's voice, and also some coincidences in how Jameis1of1 doesn't tweet during games. A redditor here tried to do 2-step verification on the Jameis 1of1 account and found that 2 digits of the phone number matched Jason Licht's.

u/pool92 · 1 pointr/LiverpoolFC
  • Red Men: Liverpool Football Club The Biography - by John Williams

    This is a very good read. It does not concentrate solely on Shankly's Liverpool as many other books do. The author recounts the story of the city, the people of Liverpool, and LFC - not just the glory years. It is not the the most current, but it does deliver a chronicle of LFC up to the Hodgson era.
u/BillGrum · 1 pointr/nfl

Here's something to look at. Some people love to minimize the whole SpyGate fiasco, but the evidence is out there. You just have to open your eyes.

u/writ24 · 1 pointr/soccer

Okay, I like the sound of this. What else do you read to inform you understanding?

I'm a relatively old and new again soccer/football fan. I spent my youth watching the NFL, I played American Football in high school and some college. So I got fairly educated on the NFL tactics (3-4 vs 4-3, the changing role of the linebacker in the NFL)

I've found that analysis of soccer tactics in this vein are not as mainstream. So how does one get the same sort of information in regard to soccer/football as they would from NFL football from this book (mind you it's quite old, not necessarily outdated)

u/JonnyAU · 1 pointr/CFB

I try to usually watch the defense on any given play, usually the linebackers since you can't see much of the secondary (on TV). I recommend the following book:

u/Abiv23 · 1 pointr/nfl

Football is really really complicated, you're never going to learn the technique related stuff (how to release from press as a WR, how to chain moves together as a pass rusher) without playing yourself

Learning general knowledge stuff like formations and pre-snap reads for an offense/defense read "Take your eyes off the ball"

u/TheTVDB · 1 pointr/nfl

Start by reading this blog:

Next, read these two books:

Note that both of these books target high school coaching strategies, so they're relatively basic and don't go into a lot of detail.

Finally, go through this list of resources:

If you're still itching for material on strategy, look at books about the great coaches. There is a good one about Bill Walsh, but I don't recall the name of it.

u/TheAethereal · 1 pointr/todayilearned

First, there is a lot more to football than what is happening after the ball is snapped. Take your eye off the ball.

Also, the replays are not superfluous. So much is happening on the field at once that it is almost impossible to see everything. OK, the RB just ran for 20 yards. Why did that happen. On the replay you can see how the defense was in man coverage and was pulled away from the run by the receivers, and how the guards pulled to deliver great blocks - or whatever the case may be.

Commercials are annoying, but I am rarely bored while the play clock is rolling.

u/BillyJackO · 1 pointr/nfl

A book called 'take your eye off the ball' is suppose to be good for learning the x's and o's. It's suppose to help get a grasp of formations and the chess match of the game.
Edit: link to Amazon and words.

u/belowthelaw · 1 pointr/nfl

This book, although old, is full of awesome anecdotes, strategy and technique analysis. Can't recommend it enough.
I would honestly shy away from madden unless you know literally nothing. While you learn what plays are and that kind of thing it really doesn't teach you strategy. It's just nice to know when you play.

u/AMcNair · 1 pointr/nfl

It's dated now, but still one of the great books about NFL football: The Thinking Man's Guide to Pro Football by Paul Zimmerman

u/vyrak · 0 pointsr/hearthstone
u/adrian1897 · 0 pointsr/soccer

This is covered quit a bit in Gianluca Vialli and Gabriele Marcotti's book.

u/FullSharkAlligator · 0 pointsr/nfl
u/onyxblade42 · -1 pointsr/CFB

.... you do know 5 guys is a blitz right? Are... are you aware of how football works? Here I'll buy it you just tell me where to send it. It's pretty clear you need it.

u/batypus · -3 pointsr/DenverBroncos

There's a whole book about it -- good read if you're not a Pats fan:

u/jj_yossarian · -6 pointsr/nfl

May I suggest a bit of reading for those who are genuinely interested in a possible reason for this? I am in no way affiliated with anyone who gets money from this book.