'Taylor' is brimming with football great's personality


Published: Thursday, January 4, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 3, 2007 at 12:00 a.m.

Regular-season NFL play is at an end, and if you're a football fan, you're probably feverishly looking for something to do with your Sunday afternoons, particularly if your team doesn't stand a chance at Super Bowl Glory.

So, what's a fan to do between now and the start of baseball season?

You can prolong pigskin period by running to the end zone of your local bookstore and getting a copy of "Taylor" by former New York Giant Lawrence Taylor.

You'll read about football games you might remember and games you'd just as soon forget, and the life of a man who played with plenty of attitude.

Growing up in tiny Lightfoot, Va., Taylor said he was always looking for a buzz. He remembers getting bloody from falls and other daredevil stunts but that pain was not as important as was visiting the "wild side."

The boyhood bumps and bruises Taylor survived were nothing compared to the broken bones and bruises he endured later in his career.

Taylor says that while his father loved to watch football, being in on the action was more to LT's liking.

He remembers playing no-pads, no-tackle football before he got into "organized" sports by way of a Jaycees league, then high school football (where he became All-State) and eventually to college to play with the University of North Carolina Tar Heels.

At UNC, Taylor honed his linebacker skills and helped his team win. There, he made All-America, which he says attracted NFL scouts to his games.

In the summer between his junior and senior years, he found an agent who convinced Taylor that he had a chance at being an NFL first-pick.

The agent wasn't far off. The New York Giants selected Taylor as the second overall pick in the draft that year, and life for Taylor was about to change quicker than a dash to the end zone.

In much the same way that he craved danger as a child, Taylor says he threw himself into winning games for the Giants, saying that he didn't want to win, he had to win.

Twice while LT was on the team, the Giants went to the Super Bowl. But fame, partying and game violence took their toll on Lawrence Taylor. As much as he had to win, he also had to stop playing.

No matter what team you support or which player you cheer for, you're going to love "Taylor," mostly because it's so darn fun to read. Author and NFL Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor lends that famous gridiron attitude to his book, and each page oozes with his personality.

Best of all for fans, there are scores of full-color and black-and-white pictures that were carefully chosen for this book, and you also get a full-length DVD of game day highlights and interviews both with LT and other NFL players who played with him and against him.

If you've got any gift certificate money left from the holidays, here's what you've been saving it for. "Taylor" is a book that will score for any football fan.

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