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I'm really proud of Joe Willie Namath


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as another South Florida resident on his road to sobriety-Joe's coming up on 3 years and I'm coming up on 2 on March 22nd-I had a little over 4 years from 1997 to October 2001-that's more than I usually share about myself...I hope to see Joe at a meeting some day-I've met a few famous people at meetings-people whose names I am not at liberty to divulge because of anonymity issues

Author Namath still proud of Jets

Neil Best


November 14, 2006

Sunday was a good day for Joe Namath.

It was his 1,036th day of sobriety, and he spent part of it watching his former and still favorite NFL team on television in his Florida home.

Best of all, the Jets won, improbably out-mucking the Patriots in Foxborough.

Surprised? "Proud more than surprised," Namath said yesterday. "I'd say I'm pleasantly proud."

Namath is accustomed to agonizing as he watches the Jets but loves what the new coach has done and how their quarterback bounced back from major surgery - a task Namath knows too well.

"The man is an example of what determination and courage can do," he said of Chad Pennington. "His arm has less strength than others, but he makes up for it with timing and mental capabilities."

Full disclosure: Most Mondays, Namath does not phone SportsWatch headquarters to spend 45 minutes shooting the breeze about the Jets. He called because he wrote a book, out today, called "Namath."

It looks good, lists for $29.95 and includes a DVD of old NFL Films interviews and footage.

Should you buy it? Depends on what you are after.

It has less lofty ambitions than Namath's first autobiography, written in 1969 with Dick Schaap, or Mark Kriegel's unauthorized 2004 book. Publishers, including Jackie Onassis, have tried to get Namath to tell all for years; this is not the account they were after.

Essentially, it is a coffee table book with easily digestible text and excellent vintage photos (which would have benefited from explanatory captions).

"It's a classy book you could have a father and son or father and daughter share," he said. "I just don't believe in kiss-and-tell about many things in life. But the next time I write a book, I promise you I've been thinking about telling everything."

The text, which includes some sloppy errors and does not have much to say about Namath's post-career life, does have its moments. Notable is a chapter that includes an exhaustive chronicle of his injuries from his perspective.

Those injuries still take a toll. Namath, 63, said his biggest physical problem is arthritis in his right wrist that makes it difficult for him to sleep.

Whenever he lapses into self-pity, though, he recalls a quadruple amputee he met during a USO tour in 1969. "If I ever start feeling sorry for something I have, I give myself a quick smack," he said.

Namath stopped drinking in January 2004, less than a month after an interview at a Jets game during which he made an inebriated pass at ESPN's Suzy Kolber.

"It could be a matter of life and death," he said of his second attempt at permanent sobriety. "Certainly a different life."

He still acts as an ambassador of sorts for the Jets and plans to attend the Texans game Nov. 26. Other than that, Namath, who is divorced, spends time at home raising his 15-year-old daughter, Olivia.

His other daughter, Jessica, 21, is a student at Alabama, where Namath played. Three years ago she said she would be the first in the family to graduate from college.

"I said, 'You want to bet?'" Namath recalled. He is on pace to graduate from Alabama in June.

"I told my mother I'd finish," he said.

Namath sounded happy and relaxed. It was early on his 1,037th day. But, he added, "I don't count today until tomorrow."

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i'm guessing he hit on suzie colbar 1,038 days ago. that'll sober anyone up.

congrats to my childhood hero. you da man joe

lol, that was great! POTW NOM.

Hey SFJ, nice work to you and JM. A very close friend of mine has been sober for about 3.5 years and I know how much work and determination is needed to come out on top. Keep up the good work big guy!

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To all you recovering guys and gals..congratulations!!!!

Keep the faith and keep strong.

As for my childhod hero Joe Nameth, I remember trying to be like Joe, I even had my mom buy the white and green puma's...remember those.

Anyway..in my opinion Joe Willy Nameth was the best, always was and always will be.

Take care Joe....and good luck

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