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About the Gridiron

5 Classic Football Movies to Enjoy During the Off-Season

Well, the Super Bowl is over, and with it, the 2014-15 football season. Now begins the long haul to August…

If you look hard enough, there are still plenty of things going on in the world of football, including the upcoming NFL draft, college recruiting and more. Our staff is hard at work preparing regulation footballs for next season, as coaches and players from around the country are busy charting their course for the year ahead.

However, you may only be interested in watching the game itself, and not care too much about all of this behind-the-scenes stuff. If you fall into this category, the next few months almost feel like a jail term – no games*, no Cinderella plays, no arguing over which team should be ranked #1 in the country.

(* This isn’t quite true – many colleges will have a spring practice game at some point in the next 2-3 months, but these games are typically not televised.)

Don’t despair our football aficionado friend. To quench your thirst of the game, there are dozens of football-themed movies out there for your enjoyment.

Below are 5 classic football-themed movies from before the year 2000. Each of the following appears in order of their initial release.


  • Horse Feathers (1932) – A classic Marx brother’s comedy about a fictional college football game. The climax of the film shows the slapstick brothers cruising into the end-zone in a horse-drawn garbage wagon for the game winning touchdown. ESPN considers this “…the greatest football-related scene in movie history.”


  • Knute Rockne, All American (1940) – Starring Pat O’Brien and former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, Knute Rockne, All American is a biography about the former Notre Dame head coach. The film is famous for Reagan’s character George Gipp, a freshman-star player who sadly came down with a fatal illness, but who courageously encourages his teammates to go out and “win one for the Gipper”. The movie quote became one of President Reagan’s signature slogans during his 2 terms in office.


  • Longest_yard_1974The Longest Yard (1974) – Burt Reynolds stars in this comedy-drama as former star QB Paul “Wrecking” Crewe. Sentenced to 18-months in prison for leading police on a high-speed chase, Crewe is recruited by the warden to train his semi-pro team consisting of the prison’s guards. The guards’ coach, Capt. Knauer, convinces Crewe to lead a team of inmates in a practice game, which doesn’t turn out quite as expected. Reynolds also stars in the 2005 remake as the prisoner’s coach Nate Scarborough.


  • AAll_the_Right_Moves_Posterll the Right Moves (1983) – Starring Tom Cruise, All the Right Moves is about a Serbian-American high school defensive back (Stefan “Stef” Djordjevic) who struggles to escape an economically depressed steel town in western Pennsylvania. Despite being gifted both athletically and academically, Stefan is black-listed by the coach for a last-minute fumble that costs the team the game.


  • RRudy2udy (1993) – Considered by many to be the best football movies of all time, Rudy is a story about the life of one Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger who dreams of being a college football player but struggles with grades and the money needed to enroll at Notre Dame. Despite many setbacks, Rudy is finally admitted to Notre Dame. At the closing of the season’s final game, Rudy is allowed onto the field under much pressure from players and fans. Rudy was the first movie since Knute Rockne, All American to be filmed on Notre Dame’s campus


This of course barely scratches the surface when it comes to famous football movies, and doesn’t include more recent classics like We Are Marshall, The Blind Side and Any Given Sunday to name a few.

When you’re dreaming football and want a good movie to watch, we certainly recommend these classics as well as other fine movies that tell the story of America’s favorite game.

We’d love to hear what your favorite football movies are. Connect with us on Facebook or Twitter, or tell us in the comments section below.

(All Images Courtesy of WikiMedia)

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