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Snake - by  Mike Freeman (Paperback) - image 1 of 1
Snake - by  Mike Freeman (Paperback) - image 1 of 1
$11.39 sale price when purchased online
$16.99 list price

About this item


  • The first in-depth biography of one of the most talented and infamous legends to play in the National Football League--the life and times of pro football's first bad boy, famed Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler.Ken "The Snake" Stabler was the embodiment of the original Men in Black--the freewheeling, hard-hitting Oakland Raiders.
  • Author(s): Mike Freeman
  • 288 Pages
  • Biography + Autobiography, Sports


Book Synopsis

The first in-depth biography of one of the most talented and infamous legends to play in the National Football League--the life and times of pro football's first bad boy, famed Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler.

Ken "The Snake" Stabler was the embodiment of the original Men in Black--the freewheeling, hard-hitting Oakland Raiders. The league's first swashbuckling pass thrower, the mythical southpaw Southerner famous for come-from-behind drives late in the game, Stabler led the Raiders to their first Super Bowl championship in 1977. In an era dominated by gentleman quarterbacks like Roger Staubach and Bob Griese, this 1974 NFL MVP, four-time Pro-bowler, and Super Bowl champion was an iconoclast who partied as hard as he played and lived life unapologetically on his own--not the NFL's--terms.

Though Stabler's legacy is larger-than-life, there has never before been an exclusive account of him, until now. Snake goes deep under the surface of Stabler's persona to reveal a man who, despite his penchant for partying and debauchery, was committed to winning and being the best player he could be. From his college days playing for Bear Bryant at Alabama to his years with the Raiders under coach John Madden, his broadcasting career to his death in 2015 and the revelation that he suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, known as C.T.E., Snake probes the myriad facets of Stabler's life on and off the field to tell his complete story, and explores how his legacy and the culture and times that pivotally shaped it, continues to impact football today.

From the Back Cover

He was a giant among men, a symbol of a different era in sports . . .

The NFL in the 1970s was a ruthless league, rife with concussions, broken bones, unmatched egos, and frequent racial strife. In the midst of this madness, commanding the Oakland Raiders (perhaps the baddest team of them all) was quarterback Ken Stabler--aka Snake--an unassuming and lethal threat as a player. On the field, he was cool and con-fident, but off of it he was a legendary woman chaser and babe magnet, carrying a larger-than-life persona at odds with the performance-drenched focus that characterized the rest of the NFL. Yet the Stabler that would eventually emerge was more than a playboy. No quarterback was tougher or more uniquely talented; his accuracy, particularly with deep throws, was as good as any quarterback's the league had ever seen; he'd won 100 games faster than any quarterback in history, as well as a Super Bowl, and most of all, he helped redefine the Raiders from losers to champions.

In Snake, Bleacher Report columnist Mike Freeman details Stabler's childhood in racially segregated Alabama, his emergence as a rare high school talent, his raucous college days under the legendary Bear Bryant at the University of Alabama, and his famed career as a quarterback for the Raiders and, later, the Houston Oilers and New Orleans Saints. Freeman expands his story by offering a rare, personal look at Stabler after his football days--including his warm affection as a husband, father, and grandfather--and even describes how Stabler's death, and subsequent Hall of Fame induction, paved the way for greater CTE awareness, as a 2016 autopsy revealed Stabler had been suffering from the disease.

This work examines the complete Stabler portrait: the good, the bad, and the unbelievable. Poignant, blunt, and eye-opening, Snake is a towering biography about a man who forever left his mark on football, the quarterback who studied his playbook by the light of a jukebox.

Review Quotes

Previous Praise for Mike Freeman "Mike Freeman is one of the nation's best sports writers, and he proves it once again here." -- Jef Pearlman, author of Sweetness: The Enigmatic Life of Walter Payton and

Dimensions (Overall): 8.0 Inches (H) x 5.3 Inches (W) x .7 Inches (D)
Weight: .4 Pounds
Suggested Age: 22 Years and Up
Number of Pages: 288
Genre: Biography + Autobiography
Sub-Genre: Sports
Publisher: Dey Street Books
Format: Paperback
Author: Mike Freeman
Language: English
Street Date: August 15, 2017
TCIN: 51896046
UPC: 9780062484260
Item Number (DPCI): 248-36-9800
Origin: Made in the USA or Imported
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Shipping details

Estimated ship dimensions: 0.7 inches length x 5.3 inches width x 8 inches height
Estimated ship weight: 0.4 pounds
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