Mark Leibovich, the chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine, is also a fiery sports analyst: Big Game (Penguin Press, $28) does for “peak football” what This Town did for Washington politics. A lifelong fan of the New England Patriots, Leibovich profiled Tom Brady and shadowed the team for a season. In this enthralling look inside the NFL, he recounts big-name owners, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, and scandles such as the infamous Deflategate. Leibovich also weighs the role of professional football in American culture at a moment when—despite growing revenue, loyal fans, and lavish stadiums—the dark side of the sport is beginning to show due to the impact of concussions and concerns about players’ health. Even the most avid fans will savor this deeply reported and cuttingly captivating book.
Big Game - Mark Leibovich