The Games That Changed the Game and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy Used
$4.00
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Games That Changed the Game: The Evolution of the NFL in Seven Sundays Hardcover – October 5, 2010


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$3.46 $0.01

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: ESPN; 1St Edition edition (October 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345517954
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345517951
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.4 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #531,521 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Jaworski, a self-described football wonk, former NFL quarterback with the Philadelphia Eagles, and Monday Night Football analyst, picks seven games he feels are benchmarks in the ever-evolving tactical strategy that defines the way pro football is played. In a wonderfully accessible format—even for less wonky fans—he provides the lineage of the coaching philosophy that provides the basis for each selection, describes in glorious detail how it was applied in the landmark game, and then adds a postscript describing how the strategy affected the game in subsequent years. This is crazy good football info. The game accounts are great, but even better are Jaworski’s analysis of coaching philosophy. Among those he profiles are Don Coryell, the father of the wide-open, “go-deep” passing blitzkrieg that still has active coaching descendants, and Bill Walsh, who led the 49ers to multiple Super Bowl wins and developed the West Coast offense—still a staple today—in the 1980s. On the other side of the ball, Jaworski notes that while Buddy Ryan’s 46 defense, which propelled the Chicago Bears to the 1985 Super Bowl title, is considered the all-time dominant defense, it wouldn’t quite work in today’s NFL. Filled with anecdotes, player recollections, and other wonderful details, this should be the most popular football book of the season. Terrific reading. --Wes Lukowsky

Review

“I've known Ron Jaworski as a teammate, opponent, and broadcaster. Now you can add author to that list. Jaws brings his contagious enthusiasm and vast knowledge to The Games That Changed the Game—a book that football fans will both love and learn from.”
--Bill Cowher, Super Bowl-winning head coach, and analyst, The NFL Today, on CBS
 
"If you want to understand the strategic and cerebral part of this very physical sport, this most fascinating football book of the season is for you."
--Library Journal (starred review)
 
"In a wonderfully accessible format—even for less wonky fans—he provides the lineage of the coaching philosophy that provides the basis for each selection, describes in glorious detail how it was applied in the landmark game, and then adds a postscript describing how the strategy affected the game in subsequent years. This is crazy good football info. The game accounts are great, but even better are Jaworski’s analysis of coaching philosophy...Filled with anecdotes, player recollections, and other wonderful detail, this should be the most popular football book of the season. Terrific reading."
--Booklist (starred review)
 
"Jaworski sets aside his TV personality, and offers a thoughtful explication in these pages."
--Publishers Weekly
 
“This is a landmark book about the game of professional football. It is groundbreaking in many ways, and it will change the way you think about and watch America’s No. 1 sport. How did the West Coast offense come to life? Hear Joe Montana tell the story. How was Buddy Ryan’s defense born? Listen to the players who were there when it came to life. Ron Jaworski, Greg Cosell and Dave Plaut have unraveled some of the game’s great schematic mysteries through seven compelling stories on seven historic Sundays.”
-- Sal Paolantonio, ESPN National Correspondent and author of How Football Explains America
 
 
“Jaworski, now an analyst for ESPN’s “Monday Night Football,” has become widely respected for his work ethic and his ability to put the finer points of NFL strategy in layman’s terms. His attention to detail and willingness to do the heavy lifting is fully on display here. He tracked down coach’s film — which is much more inclusive than the TV angles the public sees each week — for every single play of the seven games.
Considering the first of his subjects is the 1963 American Football League championship, and that all seven games came long before the YouTube era or the advent of 24-hour replays on the NFL Network, that is an impressive feat and makes for fascinating reading. But if you’re expecting nothing more than a dry recounting of Xs and Os, Jaworski will surprise you. Many of the seven games’ participants are quoted at length by Jaworski, enabling him to give each of the contests an interesting backstory unfamiliar even to NFL diehards. Jaworski offers fascinating insight for fans who want to know more than just how their fantasy players are doing.”
---New York Post

“Besides the examination of the coaches and their innovative ideas, Jaworksi takes a complete game from their playbook and demonstrates how those ideas shaped the outcome of one game and the evolution of the entire sport. Even the die-hard Sunday fans will learn a lot from this book, and rookies will come away with a greater appreciation and understanding of the game.”
--Associated Press
 
“Jaws and his colleagues are filling a real void here, and they are the perfect people to do it. They have done all the homework, spending thousands of hours looking at the “All-22s’’ of not just these seven games (there had to be a huge list to start with), but countless other games over the years.”
---Boston Globe

“Ron Jaworski played 16 NFL seasons, including an appearance as Philadelphia Eagles starting QB in the 1981 Super Bowl. Now Jaws analyzes games as part of the ESPN ‘Monday Night Football’ broadcast team. His book shares many qualities with his broadcast work: It's intelligent, detailed and enthusiastic, while also flavored with a little hype. The Games that Changed the Game would be more accurately titled Seven Games I Picked to Illustrate Changes in the Game. Anyone who really wants to understand the Cover Two defense and the West Coast offense, for example, would do well to dig into his book.” 
 --Milwaukee Journal Sentinel  
 
 “The book is invaluable because the same level of detail is in every chapter. There is no better strategic timeline for the NFL on the market today.  With a keen analytical eye on the past and present, and an intriguing focus on pro football's future, The Games That Changed the Game is everything you'd expect from these particular authors. Any strategy nerd should have all three books mentioned in this article, but if you're just going to spring for one, this contains by far the best, most accurate, and most comprehensive take. This is definitely where you should start -- and probably where you could finish.”
 --Pro Football Outsiders.com


More About the Authors

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
5 star
9
4 star
14
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 23 customer reviews
I am not a diehard football fan but I really liked this book.
TT in MA
He provides a lot of great information about tactics and strategies of coaches who changed the game.
Dennis
There is some fluff that I skim over, but all-in-all this book has great content.
EricP

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By TF on November 10, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Being a huge fan of the game itself, I truly enjoyed this book. "Jaws" takes you through 7 historic NFL games that had a lasting impact on the way the professional game was/is played - because these games introduced new coaching schemes or even ideologies that can still be felt in today's game: the grandfathers of the modern passing game, Gillman, Coryell and Walsh; defensive contributions like the Cover-2 and Dick LeBeau's Zone Blitz. Each of these schemes or concepts is demonstrated by analysis of a specific game.

The reader is taken through each game quarter by quarter describing in detail relevant plays, their impact on the game specifically and in general, including a few play diagrams. Now, if this sounds very geeky to you - then you're right. Don't get me wrong - the book is no play-by-play box score compilation. Jaworski and his co-authors focus exclusively on one team and the decisions made by that team's coach or coordinator and how each play figured into the overall scheme of that coach.

The book is fun and easy to read, a huge ensemble cast of former and current players and coaches get to have their say, and depending on your age, you either get to gain some insights of the NFL before you were born (Sid Gillman's Chargers and the Steel Curtain were before my time), too young (I only knew about Don Coryell, Dan Fouts and Kellen Winslow Sr. from highlight reels), or you get to re-experience great games that you may have seen but not thought about for some time.

What I really like was the back and forth between offensive and defensive innovations - it demonstrates the arms race in the NFL very well. The offense starts to air it out - the defense catches up.
Read more ›
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. Davis on March 30, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Ron Jaworski, former Eagles QB and ESPN analyst dissects 7 games that sees that permanently changed football strategies. If you're a diehard fan like me you'll love the detail. For example, one chapter explains how the Steelers defense in the 1970s was so good the league had to change its rules (the restriction on bumping after 5 yards was actually known as the Mel Blount rule).Jaworski explains in detail the contribution to the NFL by innovators such as Buddy Ryan, Bud Carson,Dick LeBeau, Bill Belichick, Bill Walsh and others. For knowledgable and passionate football fans, this is well worth reading.

However, I should point out this isn't the book for very casual fans. For instance,if you don't know what a tight end does, save your money and buy a football for dummies book. It will become tedious very quickly.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By John McCarthy on January 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Games that changed the Game is an intriguing look at what RJ identify as significant developments in football that transformed the way games are played in the NFL. Each chapter starts with an informative narrative about the history of the coaches and the traditional views of the game during the time period. Readers will like the back stories of these innovative coaches and players, especially if the persons are people you grew up watching. The authors do an excellent job of bringing these people into your room, and making them accessible.

The final third of each chapter focuses on a nearly drive by drive account of the highlighted team in their breakout game. This section reads very technical. I enjoy the game but felt lost at times in understanding the strategies and techniques used in the game. I might have rated this book 3 stars, but that would not fairly reflect the quality of the lectures. I understood enough to still appreciate these sections. Those of you more knowledgeable will find these sections quite insightful and stir your own thinking.

Whether a casual or hard core fan, this book is worth reading for the commentary and research that's provided. Also, if your favorite team is included, you won't be disappointed.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pitt Fan on November 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't write many reviews - but I enjoyed this book so much - I had to chime in. It was a fast read that delivered exactly what was promised in the table of contents. I'm not new to football, but I've always been more interested in the offensive side, so for me the chapters on the Cover-2, Zone Blitz, and 46 were awesome. I learned a lot. For instance, the 46 is not a 4-6 like the 4-3, or 3-4. The 46 is actually named after a player's number and if you read the chapter on it you will understand how it works. And I finally understand what is meant by a zone exchange and zone blitz. For instance, the exchange concept of dropping a D-Lineman into coverage and rushing a linebacker so that you are actually rushing the same number of players, the idea of "safe" blitzes, etc. make sense to me now. Another highlight for me was the play diagrams - there were only a handful, but they were all really nice - I'll be going back to them. Finally, Jaws avoided the dryness that frequently comes with technical books. He sprinkled in just enough anecdotes and interview excerpts from the players and coaches involved in each game he was explaining to keep things moving.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Katherine Porter on February 26, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great condition, my girlfriend really loved getting this and talks my ear off about what she reads in it, just happy she likes the book
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?