After much anticipation and worrying if there would even be a season, the NFL finally kickoffs tonight with its first game of the year. Just like with opening day for baseball, I figured I would honor the start of the 2020 season with my All-Star Roster made up of only fictional players from football movies. So that means no Gayle Sayers, Ernie Davis, Michael Oher or Remember the Titans. However, I did make some exceptions for a couple of non-player positions.
My offense will be a high-octane smashmouth style that is constantly on the move downhill. I will need a combination of strength, speed, and intelligence that will make the defense bend to our will while we snap the ball before they are even set. Balance will be key in order to keep the defenders on their heels as we pick up chunks of yardage through the air and on the ground along with a toughness to punch the defense in the mouth. Here is my offense:
Steamin Willie Beamen (Jamie Foxx) | Any Given Sunday (1999)
A hybrid QB that can fit into any system when he has his head on straight. Beamen can sit in the pocket, run an option, and throw on the run which will be key to my fast-paced offense. He showed that with the right leadership, he can be tough and grow as a player. He can be a franchise player in the right system.
Darnell Jefferson (Omar Epps) | The Program (1993)
In my style of offense, I need a RB who can duck his head and get the tough yards, be able to break off long run sand catch out of the backfield. Darnell was able to show he can do that even as just a freshman in college. The sky is the limit for this young man in my system as my every-down back.
Megget (Nelly) | The Longest Yard (2005)
Megget is simply here for his speed and to give Darnell a break from time to time or to simply give the defense something extra to think about. He is a player that can give you six points with one touch of the ball and is why he will also be our punt returner.
Guard Dunham (Stone Cold Steve Austin) | The Longest Yard (2005)
There comes a time in every game where you need to get nasty in order to gain one inch and you need a player who can bulldoze the way for that inch. Dunham is just that person. He is a nasty pile mover whose legs won’t stop churning till that inch is gained whether he is carrying the ball or paving the way for one of the RBs.
Deacon Jones (Michael Irvin) | The Longest Yard (2005)
Every great team needs a Playmaker. That player that can do it all by catching the route you need at the moment you need it. A playmaker is someone who can make one catch and take it to the house or pick up that 3rd and long by not being scared to go over the middle. Deacon Jones is simply that Playmaker you need on every receiving corp.
Rod Tidwell (Cuba Gooding Jr.) | Jerry Maguire (1996)
An important piece to any passing game is that WR who can stretch the field and be a deep play threat. Enter Rod Tidwell. He is fast and flashy who can leave the defensive backs in his dust while catching a bomb from Beamen. He will also put on a show for the fans when he finds the endzone.
Charlie Tweeder (Scott Caan) | Varsity Blues (1999)
While Deacon and Tidwell are getting all the attention, little Charlie Tweeder will be racking up catches left and right exploiting the vulnerable spots in the defense. A player like Tweeder is an extension of your running game by moving the ball 5 yards at a time through the air. Plus, he will be able to hang with the ego of his fellow WRs.
Brian Murphy (David Denman) | The Replacements (2000)
The tight end may just be my favorite player on the offensive side of the ball. A great TE is incredibly difficult to stop in an effective offense and Brian Murphy is a receiving tight end that will constantly be covered by slower linebackers or undersized DBs. He is a matchup nightmare and we all know we don’t have to worry about him jumping false starting during an audible.
Bud-Lite Kaminski (Abraham Benrubi) | The Program (1993)
Just like in real life, linemen never get the credit they deserve as there was not a good image of Kaminski on the internets. However, you need a mean and agile brute to protect your QBs six. Like any good lineman, he loves his QB like a brother, is a leader, and is willing to just get the job done over receiving any glory. Not only does he know he is going to pancake but he is confident enough to let you know it as well. He is the slab of beef in the suspenders by the way.
Fumiko (Ace Yonamine) | The Replacements (2000)
A former sumo wrestler who is a master in the art of pushing people and a bit of a twinkle toes will fit right in with this high tempo system. Fumiko’s only focus is to get bigger and better to protect his QB and open holes for the running backs.
Manumana (Peter Navy Tuiasosopo) | Necessary Roughness (1991)
Manu respects his elders, women, and can hit like a Mack truck. This boulder is a perfect anchor to your line that is smart and commands respect like any good center does. As the general of the o-line, Manu is a perfect choice as my center.
Billy Bob (Ron Lester) | Varsity Blues (1999)
After scanning his cat, Billy Bob is the epitome of a high school football player in Texas. He isn’t the best and may not get many offers from other places but he is going to give you all that he has for the sport he loves. He is fiercely protective and loyal. Just what you need on your offensive line.
Joe Bob Priddy (Bo Svenson) | North Dallas Forty (1979)
There are a number of mean and crazy players on this team and Joe Bob just might be the best or worst of all of them in that regard. He is one of the nastiest players that doesn’t care what you say or who are. He is here for two reasons only: to get the job done and to inflict as much pain on his opponent as possible. This is the kind of player you want in the trenches with you.
Joe Kane (Craig Sheffer) | The Program (1993)
Everybody’s favorite player on any team. The backup quarterback. The moment the offense struggles or an interception is thrown, the whispers for the QB to be replaced will start to grow louder as L’s begin to mount up. heck, the team could still be winning but there will always be a faction of fans clamoring for the coach to put in the backup. That divisiveness won’t go away either with Joe Kane on the bench. He is a born leader that has the ability to get people to follow him where he leads. Beamen will not be able to rest and will have to constantly rise to the challenge if he wants to keeps his job.
We will be running a 3-4 defense to help keep up with the higher amount of passing going on today. This gives us the ability to still defend the run but enough fluidity to move into Nickel and Dime packages during passing situations. The defense will be on the field a lot with how up-tempo the offense is going to be by scoring a lot of points quickly, so we need some nasty athletes that can make stops and forced turnovers.
Samson (Richard Kiel) | The Longest Yard (1974)
With only three d-linemen, I need size to help plug multiple gaps when needed and Samson is going to able to affect the running and passing game with his size and height. He is a mean dude that most players will want to run from which will give the rest of the D time to react. Also with his height, if he isn’t able to get to the QB, he will be able to deflect passes at the LOS.
Andre Krimm (Sinbad) | Necessary Roughness (1991)
In a 3-4, the defensive tackle needs size and speed. Andre Krimm will not only be able to plug gaps but also keep things lighthearted during the heat of battle so the maniacs around don’t get too many personal foul penalties.
Battle (Bill Goldberg) | The Longest Yard (2005)
Speaking of maniacs, Battle is your prototype d-end with size and speed to chase down the QB and get backside tackles. His ferocity will help intimidate the o-line making the hesitate before wanting to lock up with this animal.
Luther ‘Shark’ Lavay (Lawerence Taylor) | Any Given Sunday (1999)
This will be the greatest linebacking units in the history of football and will be lead by veteran Shark Lavay while he does what it takes to stay on the field and get paid. I’m putting him as outside linebacker so he can disrupt every facet of the offense by stopping runs, covering in the pass, and chasing down QBs on a blitz.
Alvin Mack (Duane Davis) | The Program (1993)
If there was a Heisman award for trash-talking, then it would be named after Alvin Mack. The only thing is Mack can talk all the trash and back it up like no other. He gives new meaning to getting inside the opponent’s head and winning the battle before the ball is even snapped. He has the ability to read an offense better than a Dr. Seuss book. The “Mike” backer is the QB of the defense by barking out orders and being the leader. Mack is everything thing you want in a player and will wreak havoc on opposing offenses causing nothing but snot bubbles.
Bobby Boucher (Adam Sandler) | The Waterboy (1998)
Every team needs a waterboy. Especially one that is like an unstoppable guided missile straight to the QB. In a 3-4 system, a blitz can be disguised and come from anywhere which will help Bobby put QBs in the hospital even more. We may need to work on his pass coverage but we will make sure he has as much tackling fuel as possible.
Harlan ‘Flat-top’ Meyers (Tom Whitenight) | Necessary Roughness (1991)
Some football players are made and some football players are born. Flat-Top most likely came out of the womb and tackled the doctor. The top defensive player from the number ranked team in the nation is a perfect addition to this unit as he will be the silent killer that won’t get as much praise as the other three linebackers but will simply get the job done.
Stefen Djordjevic (Tom Cruise) | All the Right Moves (1983)
How do you play against speed? With physicality and aggression. At the cornerback spot, Stefen may not be the biggest or fastest, but he will physically punish his opponent by not letting him get separation and making him pay when does happen to catch the ball. He is a bit of a hothead. A good coach can control that. They can not teach passion and aggression.
Trumaine (Wesley Snipes) | Wildcats (1986)
Every good defense needs a shutdown corner. Enter the Trumaine who is an all-round athlete that will have one job. Don’t let their best WR touch the ball. Speed and athleticism will help him out tremendously.
Spike (Sam Horrigan) | Little Giants (1994)
Spike eats, sleeps, and breathes football. He is only going to stronger and faster as he gets old which makes him perfect for the strong safety spot. Hell, he hasn’t even hit puberty yet. His job will be to knock out anyone who happens to break through the front seven or dares to cross midfield.
Earl Wilkinson (Michael Jace) | The Replacements (2000)
At free safety, Earl will be free to roam the field making plays all over the place. QBs will have to think twice when they let a ball flutter in the air with Wilkinson stalking. He will turn a bad read into a pick-six quicker than Shane Falco is able to get into a packed stadium during halftime.
Nigel Gruff (Rhys Ifans) | The Replacements (2000)
Not that we plan on settling on field goals but on the off chance we can’t put it in the endzone, we will need someone who is automatic and able to maintain that accuracy from anywhere on the field. Nigel is as wiry as they come with a golden leg that was a gift from the football gods. Nobody else can flick a cigarette out of their mouth right before making a 45-yard field goal like it was nothing.
We ain’t punting!
Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) | Forrest Gump (1994)
We simply need someone who can put our offense in solid field position when we receive a kickoff and who would be better than the Alabama legend himself, Forrest Gump. Sometimes as a coach, all you want to be able to do is tell your players to just run north and south to the endzone. Look no further than Mr. Gump who can have all the ice cream and box of chocolates he wants. As long as he keeps Jenny away from tainting the other players.
Jimmy McGinty (Gene Hackman) | The Replacements (2000)
There are several great coaches that I could hire. All have different qualities that could lead this team to victories, but Jimmy McGinty makes me feel the most confident in his ability to bring a motley crew of individuals into a team mentality and in a short amount of time. His team-building and leadership with the Washington Sentinels as they were pulling in scab players off the streets was an amazing job in itself. Not to mention the short amount of time he had to work with. If there is anyone who could focus this team full of egos without cutting their legs out from under them, its Coach McGinty.
Coach Klein (Henry Winkler) | The WaterBoy (1998)
Before his mental breakdown, Coach Klien was an offensive genius. So much so, his plays were stolen to help lead another team to multiple Bourbon Bowl victories. Now that he’s back from his mental collapse, I can’t think of anyone else to take this high-flying offense to another level with some genius play calling.
Nickerson (Craig T. Nelson) | All the Right Moves (1983)
For a defensive coordinator, you need someone who is tough and has the ability to gameplan against the other team’s strengths in order to shut them down. Coach Nickerson shows that ability by changing his system to beat teams at their strongest attack point. His defensive gameplan against undefeated Walnut Heights helped land him a college coaching position and will help this nasty defense destroy some fools.
Strength and Conditioning Coach
Sean Porter (Dwayne Johnson) | Gridiron Gang (2006)
We are not resting on talent alone. We need to constantly get bigger and badder. Sean Porter can handle any knuckleheads and construct and offseason plan that will keep us dominant for years to come.
Radio (Cuba Gooding Jr.) | Radio (2003)
Every team needs a sentimental mascot and someone to run around getting the balls. Radio will be beloved by everyone and help pull this community together.
Alright, gang, here is my roster. What substitutions would you make and which character would want on your team?