Wedded to the Game: The Real Lives of NFL Women

Wedded to the Game: The Real Lives of NFL Women

Wedded to the Game: The Real Lives of NFL Women

Wedded to the Game: The Real Lives of NFL Women


What is it really like living in the shadow of the NFL? Contending with marital issues in a media spotlight? Raising kids whose father is idolized for his bone-crushing work on national TV? Trying to pursue friendships and career while constantly on the move? Reporting from the home field, Shannon O'Toole offers an intimate perspective on the culture of the NFL based on her interviews with dozens of wives and girlfriends of NFL players and coaches.

Bringing to bear a background in sociology and a firsthand understanding of being married to the NFL, O'Toole is uniquely qualified to report from behind pro football's doors. Part insider tell-all, part sociological study, her book is packed with candid on-the-spot accounts of NFL life, providing a rare glimpse into the often hidden world behind the game.

Women--already 43 percent of the NFL's fan base--make up the sport's fastest growing group of fans: this book is certain to appeal to them and to anyone who wonders about the hidden realities of America's favorite game.


The freshly painted white-walled house was quiet. Our German shepherd, Keisha, settling in to her new surroundings, had claimed the sunniest corner of the kitchen’s linoleum floor for her afternoon snooze. I was making dinner, and as I carefully scooped vegetable clippings into a paper bag, Keisha jerked her head upright and began to bark. I also heard the car engine out front, but I said to her, “No, no, it’s too early to be John.”

It was only two o’clock, and John wasn’t due home until after five (and usually later than that). Six weeks ago, and one week into the regular season, John had been signed to the Green Bay Packers’ practice squad as a receiver. This was his second chance to play football in the nfl, after having been cut that summer at the end of training camp by the then Los Angeles Raiders, and he was determined to make it. If that meant being the first guy on the field in the morning and the last one to leave it at night, that was what he was going to do.

Not only that, but it looked like the Packers really wanted him. At first overwhelmed by the extensive playbook, John was beginning to feel at ease, and he would come home from practice energized and excited. His receiver coach, Jon Gruden, was especially positive about John’s future and told him he might even be activated from the practice . . .

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