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The Best Football Movies and TV Shows to Watch to Get Excited for the Super Bowl

From Rudy and Remember the Titans to Friday Night Lights

Kaitlin Thomas

Sometimes it feels like the Super Bowl has become so commercialized that the football being played in between the multi-million dollar ads trying to sell you a new car that can park itself is an afterthought. But we at TV Guide love football, and we want you to love football too. So what better way to remind you just how much you love the sport than by plunking down on the couch and watching some of the best films and TV shows about football that subscriptions to multiple streaming services can buy?

Below, we've curated a lengthy list of recommendations that includes beloved football movies and TV shows, as well as biopics, documentaries, and maybe even a film about the dangers of playing football (look, we like to be thorough, and CTE is a serious issue). So grab some popcorn and settle in for some good ol' pigskin action ahead of Sunday's Super Bowl LIV.

(Disclosure: Links to retailers may earn money to support our work.)

Any Given Sunday

Any Given Sunday

Warner Bros. Pictures/Online USA/Getty Images


All the Right Moves(1983)
Watch it on: Hulu (with Cinemax add-on)
Tom Cruise stars in this film as a star high school football player whose hopes of escaping his economically depressed hometown rest on his ability to secure a college football scholarship.

Any Given Sunday(1999)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
Directed by Oliver Stone, Any Given Sunday follows the fictional, embattled Miami Sharks, led by their longtime coach (Al Pacino), who has come under fire in recent years, and a talented third-string quarterback (Jamie Foxx) as the team tries to make the playoffs.

The Blind Side(2009)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
Sandra Bullock won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in this 2009 film, based on a true story, about Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron), a foster child taken in by a lovely couple (Bullock and Tim McGraw) and who later finds his place on the gridiron.

Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
In this movie based on Jeanne Maris Laskas' expose "Game Brain," Will Smith stars as Bennet Omalu, the Pittsburgh doctor who discovered chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a disorder associated with repeated blows to the head, in the brains of deceased football players. CTE is a threat to professional football players, and therefore the football industry, and the movie details Omalu's battle with the NFL as the organization tries to suppress his findings.

Gridiron Gang(2006)
Watch it on: Hulu, IMDBtv, Vudu (rent or buy)
The Rock stars in this film, loosely inspired by real events, as a former professional football player who starts and coaches a football team at a juvenile detention center in order to teach them discipline and responsibility.

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Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Disney+, Showtime, Hulu (with Showtime add-on), Vudu (rent or buy)
In this movie that is inspired by true events, Mark Wahlberg portrays Vince Papale, a bartender who goes to an open tryout for the Philadelphia Eagles and actually makes the team. Disney embellished the story of the real Papale for drama, but that doesn't make it any less inspiring.

​Cuba Gooding Jr and Tom Cruise, Jerry Maguire

Cuba Gooding Jr and Tom Cruise, Jerry Maguire

TriStar/Getty Images

Jerry Maguire(1996)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Showtime, Hulu (with Showtime add-on), Vudu (rent or buy)
Some people might say Jerry Maguire is a romance, but did the film's romantic storyline win Cuba Gooding, Jr. an Oscar for portraying Arizona Cardinals' Rod "Show me the money!" Tidwell? No, this movie is a football movie, fair and square.

Little Giants(1994)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
A life-long sibling rivalry between the O'Shea brothers (Rick Moranis and Ed O'Neill) is the backdrop for this classic '90s film that pits a rag-tag football team full of eager but not very talented youngsters against the local, better funded pee-wee team to find out who gets to be the hometown boys (and girls).

The Longest Yard(1974)
Watch it on: Netflix, Vudu (rent or buy)
This film has been remade several times, but the only one that matters is this one, which stars Burt Reynolds as a former professional football player who lands in prison and ends up leading a prison football team to greatness.

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Necessary Roughness(1991)
Watch it on: Amazon, Vudu (rent or buy)
Scott Bakula, Sinbad, and Kathy Ireland star in this comedy about Texas State University's Fightin' Armadillos, a once-premiere fictional college football program that must rebuild its entire team with a bunch of misfits, beginning with a 30-something freshman quarterback (Bakula), after major NCAA violations left the program with no talent and no scholarships.

Remember the Titans(2000)
Watch it on: Disney+, Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
This extraordinary film (with an even better soundtrack) is based on the real life story of Herman Boone, an African American coach (portrayed in the movie by Denzel Washington) and his attempt to integrate a high school football team in Virginia in the 1970s.

The Replacements(2000)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Hulu (with Live TV), Vudu (rent or buy)
Keanu Reeves stars as Shane Falco, a former Ohio State player whose career died following a disastrous bowl appearance, in this sports comedy about a team of replacement players after a players' strike threatens to end the football season early.

Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
This inspirational biographical film tells the story of Daniel "Rudy" Ruettiger (portrayed by Sean Astin), who dreams of playing football at Notre Dame despite significant obstacles standing in his path. If you don't feel a sense of joy and triumph by the end, you have no heart.

Varsity Blues(1999)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
In this film that might best be remembered for a whipped-cream bikini and James Van Der Beek yelling "I don't want your life!" at his father, this coming-of-age film follows the Beek as a backup high school quarterback discovering the pressure of being the starting signal caller under a ruthless coach (Jon Voight).

The Waterboy(1998)
Watch it on: Netflix, Vudu (rent or buy)
Adam Sandler stars as the dim-witted Bobby Boucher in this comedy about a college football team's stuttering water boy becoming a star linebacker after he channels all his anger and rage into playing the game.

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We Are Marshall(2006)
Watch it on: Amazon (rent or buy), Vudu (rent or buy)
This film depicts the aftermath of the 1970 plane crash that took the lives of 37 football players from Marshall University, as well as their coaches and athletic trainers, among others. Matthew McConaughey stars as the program's new head coach, who successfully rebuilds the team and puts them on the path to recovery.

​Kyle Chandler, Friday Night Lights

Kyle Chandler, Friday Night Lights

Bill Records/NBCUniversal/Getty Images


All American(2018)
Watch it on: Netflix, Hulu (with Live TV)
Inspired by the real life of Spencer Paysinger, this football-centric high school drama follows a young man from South L.A. who is recruited to play football at Beverly Hills High.

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Friday Night Lights(2006)
Watch it on: HuluFall in love with Coach Taylor (Kyle Chandler), Matt Saracen (Zach Gilford), Tim Riggins (Taylor Kitsch), and the rest of the Dillon Panthers as they try to make it to State in this Emmy-winning series that was as much about a Texas community as it was about football. Bonus: The 2004 film is also available on Hulu if you have the Cinemax add-on!

Watch it on: Amazon (buy), Vudu (buy)
It's a crime that this long-running ABC comedy about the head coach (portrayed by Craig T. Nelson) of a fictional college football team isn't streaming without purchase, but that doesn't mean it's not worth paying for either.

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All or Nothing



A Football Life(2011)
Watch it on: Amazon
This Emmy-nominated NFL Films documentary series is now in its ninth season and profiles the incredible players, coaches, owners, and teams of the sport, including Bill Belichick, Kurt Warner, Vince Lombardi, Tim Tebow, Chris Spielman, Charles Woodson, Jim Brown, Dan Marino, Terry Bradshaw, the teams of the 2006 Rose Bowl, and more.

All or Nothing(2016)
Watch it on: Amazon
Similar to HBO's Hard Knocks, Amazon's sports-centric docuseries gives viewers an all-access pass to the behind-the-scenes action of a single NFL or college football team, but it doesn't stop after training camp. The series has already followed the Arizona Cardinals, Michigan Wolverines, Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, and the Carolina Panthers. An upcoming season will be centered on the Philadelphia Eagles. (There are also a few seasons that follow non-American football teams, too.)

Go Tigers!(2001)
Watch it on: Hulu
This documentary follows the Massillon Tigers, one of winningest high school football programs in the country, during their 1999 season and covers their fierce rivalry with the Canton McKinley Bulldogs, which has become one of the greatest high school football rivalries in the nation.

Hard Knocks(2001)
Watch it on: HBO, HBO Go, HBO Now, Hulu (with HBO add-on)
For reasons we can only assume are related to licensing, HBO only has the latest season of this ongoing documentary series that follows NFL teams through training camp as they prepare for the season. But YouTube does have some of the previous seasons, if you're interested.

Last Chance U (2016)
Watch it on: Netflix
Netflix's documentary series, which has aired four seasons thus far, focuses on football at the community college level and follows many team members who are starting over after getting kicked off D1 teams, building into a "last chance" theme.

QB1: Beyond the Lights(2017)
Watch it on: Netflix
This docuseries follows three exceptional high school quarterbacks from different backgrounds as they play their final games and prepare to move on to the college level. Season 1 featured future Georgia Bulldogs QB Jake Fromm, while Season 2 featured recent Heisman Trophy finalist Justin Fields of the Ohio State Buckeyes (who transferred from Georgia, where he was the backup to Fromm).

Watch it on: Netflix, Vudu (rent or buy)
This Oscar-winning documentary follows the struggles of the 2009 Manassas Tigers of Memphis, an underfunded team from the inner city that had never won a playoff game but whose culture was turned around by a new football coach who also acted as a mentor to the young subjects of the film.