homeaboutarchives + tagsshopmembership!
aboutarchivesshopmembership!
aboutarchivesmembers!

kottke.org posts about Shea Serrano

The manifest glory of JJ Watt

posted by Tim Carmody   Sep 09, 2015

I’m increasingly ambivalent about football (see here, here, here), but HBO’s Hard Knocks, the recurring documentary miniseries inside an NFL training camp, is still the best TV show I’ve seen all year.

The show’s stars included coaches, families, undrafted rookies and journeyman free agents, all in orbit around the Houston Texans. A huge part of the draw, though, is all-pro defensive lineman JJ Watt, maybe the NFL’s best player at any position. Watt does freakish things, like flipping half-ton tires end over end, or box-jumping sixty-one inches (kind of like jumping onto the roof of a car from a standstill).

Earlier this summer, Grantland’s Shea Serrano got to run through drills with Watt:

Watt is the best defensive football player on the planet — probably the best football player full stop. His body looks like what Superman would draw if someone asked him to draw what he wanted to look like. My body looks like if someone asked Superman to draw a pile of mashed potatoes wearing shorts.

Sports business may be evil, its fundamental practices barbaric, its media representations distorted and misleading, and its role in American life exaggerated beyond all reason. But god, it’s compelling to watch human beings who are better at what they do than anyone else on the planet, who do things that don’t completely seem possible.