This appears in the Feb. 7, 2011 issue of ESPN The Magazine.
It's Super Bowl time, which means right now there are 30 NFL teams whose seasons are over. In other words, almost 1,600 players are sitting at home watching. (OK, or maybe on vacation somewhere.) And guess what? Most of them couldn't be happier.
That's because the majority of the guys -- I'd say probably close to 70 percent -- are in the game only for the money. They don't care about winning. The editors showed me the story on Super Bowl rings, and, man, I couldn't disagree more: Most players don't care about championship bling. Sure, in interviews, 100 percent of them will say it's all about winning championships. But they know that's what the public wants to hear. I'm telling you, most of them are lying. They couldn't care less about getting a ring.