"In the NFL--America's most popular sports league--quarterbacks are kings. The right QB becomes the face of a franchise and marches his team--and millions of fans--on a glorious winning odyssey that can last for a decade or longer. The wrong QB leads his team to losses, infighting, second-guessing, and fan misery. Quarterbacks are drafted straight out of college with indescribable expectations and tantalizing dreams of stardom resting on their shoulders from Day One. They play in front of 75,000 fans, with millions more watching at home. The intense media glare follows their every move. Many QBs wash out of the league ... and a few become legends. John Feinstein takes us inside that rarified world with five men who have achieved the highest levels in the NFL. Andrew Luck and Alex Smith--both #1 overall selections in their respective drafts; Joe Flacco--Super Bowl MVP; Doug Williams--the first African American quarterback to win the biggest game in sports and to be named Super Bowl MVP; and Ryan Fitzpatrick--experienced veteran and starting quarterback of seven NFL teams ... among them, they have lived every aspect of playing the position. Feinstein describes the pressures, politics, business, and physical toll. He maps out a QB's journey, from incredible athleticism and college stardom to the NFL draft, from taking command of the huddle to marching a team down the field with a nation of fans cheering. With the cooperation of these five quarterbacks and dozens of other players, coaches, and GMs, Feinstein assembles an unprecedented glimpse into the routine of a star quarterback--in the locker room and in the huddle--and outlines what happens on the field in the heat of battle, whether leading to spectacular moments or embarrassing defeats ... as well as the demands of the press conferences afterward. Feinstein also explores the controversies of a powerful league embroiled in questions of player health, substance abuse, racism, TV revenue, corporate greed, draft decisions, free-agency strategies, and management decisions that are sometimes brilliant and sometimes questionable. In the end, [this book] is John Feinstein's most fascinating--and insightful--book yet."--Dust jacket.