ARMED AND DANGEROUS by Jim with Vic Carucci Kelly

ARMED AND DANGEROUS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

From rags to riches on a magic pigskin, by Buffalo Bills quarterback Kelly and Buffalo News sportswriter Carucci (coauthor, They Call Me Dirty, 1988, etc.). Both quarterbacks in the 1990 Super Bowl now have published autobiographies. Much as in Jeff Hostetler's One Giant Step (1991), the message here is that sports is still a way out of poverty in America, and that family is the root of what coaches call ""character."" Kelly also had fun, and his childhood competition with his three brothers, combined with his father's cooperation, was strong preparation. And he could throw bullets. He threw them for Howard Schnellenberger at Miami, earning much praise, but the shoulder separation Kelly suffered there (and its long, slow rehab) is sobering, as are the concussions and memory-loss. By contrast, his induction into the USFL's Houston Gamblers is hilarious. Wanting bucks but not wanting icy Buffalo, Kelly went to Houston for his tryout, which saw owner Jerry Argovitz running receiving patterns. A bullet broke an Argovitz finger, and the owner decided that Kelly's shoulder was mended. Nearly four million dollars richer, Kelly went on a tear against the lightweight USFL competition, but what's more interesting here is the continuing family closeness, the debt acknowledged, and the satisfaction Kelly takes in what he can do for the people he loves. The scene in which he and his brothers spread hundred-dollar bills across a table and then fan themselves with the money is priceless. On a roll from that point forward, Kelly ends up with the Bills and annihilates the Raiders on the way to the Super Bowl. And while Buffalo lost that one, it was a game of historic excellence in which neither team (or quarterback) lost face. Aside from injuries, nary a bad event seems to occur here, and there isn't a lot of deep thought--this is a book about winning, and not a bad one.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1992
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Doubleday