LT: Over the Edge: Tackling Quarterbacks, Drugs, and a World Beyond Football

LT: Over the Edge: Tackling Quarterbacks, Drugs, and a World Beyond Football

4.8 11
by Lawrence Taylor, Steve Serby
     
 

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On the football field, Lawrence Taylor was an unstoppable force of nature — arguably the best defensive player in the game and, quite possibly, ever. But off the field, the life of a player who enjoyed a record ten Pro Bowl appearances and led the New York Giants to two Super Bowl victories was an all-out blitz, fueled by drugs, sex, and booze, and charging at

Overview

On the football field, Lawrence Taylor was an unstoppable force of nature — arguably the best defensive player in the game and, quite possibly, ever. But off the field, the life of a player who enjoyed a record ten Pro Bowl appearances and led the New York Giants to two Super Bowl victories was an all-out blitz, fueled by drugs, sex, and booze, and charging at breakneck speed toward total self-destruction. This is the shocking true story of a giant's fall ... and his remarkable journey back to the world.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this slapdash effort, former New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor and a supporting cast of characters recall the football legend's career and personal struggle with drug addiction. On the field, Taylor was universally regarded as the greatest defensive football player in the game's history. His size, speed and ferocity led the Giants to two Super Bowl championships in 1986 and 1990, and earned Taylor an exalted place in NFL folklore, as well as in the record books and in the Football Hall of Fame. All this for a player, readers learn, who rarely worked out, practiced lazily and played many of his awe-inspiring games hungover. While he was succeeding on the field, off the field Taylor's life was out of control. He was addicted to cocaine and to a hard-partying lifestyle that eventually led to a divorce, numerous arrests, financial ruin and employment prospects that sunk as low as professional wrestling. Although billed as an autobiography, the book (written with New York Post columnist Serby) is more an oral history, interweaving Taylor's remembrances with those of former teammates, coaches, sports writers and friends. While there are some memorable anecdotes and a few intimate glimpses, there is surprisingly little new here for Taylor fans beyond the depressing details of his most recent travails. That's unfortunate-underneath it all, Taylor' is a truly rich, compelling story. He remains a larger-than-life personality, and one who made extraordinary football history in one of the NFL's most colorful eras. Still, in this, his second shot at autobiography (his first was LT: Living on the Edge in 1987), the true substance of Lawrence Taylor goes woefully unexamined. (On sale Nov. 25) Forecast: Despite its flaws, this book will nonetheless reach Taylor's many, many fans. Mike Wallace plans to interview Taylor on 60 Minutes on November 30. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
With a successful career under his belt, Taylor, a former All-American player and Hall of Fame inductee, became addicted to booze, cocaine, and sex. This memoir, written with sports columnist Serby, details his life as a skilled linebacker and subsequent intensive therapy and rehab. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061031496
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
08/31/2004
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
312,919
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.98(d)

Read an Excerpt

LT: Over the Edge
Tackling Quarterbacks, Drugs, and a World Beyond Football

Chapter One

Clarence, my Dad

LT was what you saw on the field playing for the Giants, but at home he was Lonnie. Lonnie was aggressive but lovable. He would do anything for you. Very polite. LT was very aggressive. Wanted to be known as a rough, tough kinda guy. Take-your-head-off kind. In your face.

Iris, my Mom

He was a challenging child. Where the other two boys would ask for permission to do stuff, Lonnie -- his family and friends, we always call him Lonnie -- would just do it, and when you found out about it, he would give you a big story.

Growing up in Williamsburg, Virginia, I always had respect for my mom and dad. I had perfect attendance every year in school, and I was a decent student. When I applied myself, which wasn't all that often. I wasn't what you would call a Goody Two-shoes. Even as a youngster I had a problem with curfews.

Iris

I didn't let my children roam the streets. All our boys had curfews. They would come in and say good night and then go to bed. But then Lonnie would go out the window and go to a party. See, I had spies all over Williamsburg and everybody knew my children. One of them told me one time, "I saw your son at a party last night," and I said, "No, it couldn't have been. My sons are home at twelve."

She said, "I don't know exactly which one it was, but he was having a good old time." So I said, "Hmmmm."

I'd normally wake up at three o'clock in the morning and I would go in and do a bed check. I always wanted to be sure my kids were safe. Lonnie must have known that, so he'd come home before three. So I got up at two and went into the bedroom to do my check, and that little rascal was gone! So I waited for him. After a while, he knocked on the window, and I hear him whisper to his brother, "Kim, Kim, open the door."

I said, "That's all right, Kim, I got it!" I unlocked the door and hid. When Lonnie came in, I grabbed him from behind. I grounded him for a week.

Yeah, I guess you could say I had plenty of mischief in me, and sometimes my parents would need to get my attention with a belt -- or a switch from a birch tree. I liked to see what I could get away with.

Iris

He was good at conning people. He was a smooth talker. He could talk you out of anything.

One time, when I was eleven, I borrowed my dad's bicycle, which I wasn't supposed to do. I figured, Who'd know?

Clarence

I bought four bicycles, one for each boy and one for myself. I told them, "These are your bicycles and this is mine. If you break your bicycle you're not getting mine."

I was at work one day and Lawrence borrowed my bicycle and rode downtown. He ran into something and messed it up. He didn't know what to do, so he came back home. I had an old '72 Chevrolet pickup with a manual shift, which he didn't know how to drive that well. He proceeded to get the bicycle, but because he didn't know how to shift gears, he drove it in low gear all the way and messed the transmission up. He got someone with a wrecker to bring my truck back to the house and put it in the same place, and then he wiped out the tracks so I couldn't see that the truck had been moved. He put the bicycle in the trash somewhere, I suppose.

When I went to use the truck the next day, I thought something had just happened to the transmission. Lawrence never said anything about it until years afterward.

So I went from borrowing a bike to destroying it and my dad's pickup. Hmm, I wonder if that was any indication of what the future had in store for me? Anyway, my poor dad thought his bike had been stolen until he read my first book.

My parents had their hands full with three sons. I was in the middle -- it was me, Buddy, and Kim. We struggled a bit financially when I was growing up, but I didn't know too many black families back then who didn't struggle some. But I never left the house hungry. Mom and Dad worked hard to bring us up. Dad had a job in the shipyards at Newport News, and Mom worked low-paying jobs at places like the five-and-dime or the Laundromat. We made out better than most. And if I ever needed some spending money, I'd get creative.

Buddy, my older brother

One time he stole some jeans from Woolworth's. Then he took them back and told them they were too big and he wanted his money back. He got his money!

I'd also borrow money from my mother, buy candy from Happy's Store, and sell it at school for a profit -- sometimes to my brothers. That's why they called me the Candy Man. I'd make out so good I'd lend Mom money so she could go to the movies.

Kim, my younger brother

One day our mother was in our room and Lonnie, who was thirteen or so at the time, said, "Mom, when I become rich, I'm going to buy you a house."

She said, "You don't even want to go to school, how are you going to become rich?"

He said, "Mark my words." We all laughed.

But big was the only way I knew how to dream. It was something I always did with my friends -- D'Fellas. They were my boys and we were tight ...

LT: Over the Edge
Tackling Quarterbacks, Drugs, and a World Beyond Football
. Copyright © by Lawrence Taylor. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Lawrence Taylor now divides his time between Florida and New Jersey.

Steve Serby is a columnist for the New York Post.

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LT: Over the Edge: Tackling Quarterbacks, Drugs, and a World Beyond Football 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jon69 More than 1 year ago
L.T.: Over the Edge by Lawrence Taylor is a great and entertaining auto biography. My opinion of this book is that it was good book. It was good because besides telling you what it was like to be in the game and to be the best defensive player of all time, it told you what L.T.'s life was like outside of football. L.T.: Over the Edge takes place in New York between the 1970's and the 1990's. Lawrence Taylor's addiction to drugs and partying was the major conflict in this book. L.T. would skip practice and get in trouble with, police and drug dealers all the time. Also L.T. ruined his marriage because of his addiction and his carelessness. In the book L.T. uses cocaine at an away game and he instantly became addicted. Doing cocaine ruined L.T.'s marriage and greatly affected how he played in games and practices. Lawrence Taylor got a divorce with his wife and she got custody of the children, which made L.T. break down and almost go insane. His divorce was a result of his cheating and doing cocaine. L.T. entered a rehab program to try to get clean but he kept having relapses. He finally decided to get serious about it and entered one for months. The author wrote the book in first person point of view. He uses curse words in his writing which I found interesting because most books don't have bad language in them, but it made it realistic. If you like football, and L.T. then you will love this book. You get to see how he played even though he was doing drugs and you get to see about his life outside of football which was my favorite part.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
In LT: Over The Edge Lawerence Taylor explains his life. He talks about his childhood in North Carloina all the way untill his days playing for the New York Giants. In between those times he had a life that was taking over by partying. He let his life go out of control and finally got on the right track. His major message was to live life to the fulliest and as a young man he thought doing drugs and partying was the best thing he could do. He didnt ever have a dull moment. I like how this book was brutally honest. Anything cocky in the book about football was quoted by someone else and when playing a sport you also need that attitude that you are the best player out there and no one is better than you. I really enjoyed this book and not many dislikes. Someone should read this to show how drugs can take someone who was basically superman and make him a small person.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is about a hall of fame football player who drugs at one point took over his life. Lt started using cocaine as a social thing, but then it got to a point that it became a daily thing. The NFL started doing random drug test¿s Lt would tell people to urine in a cup for him so he can cheat the drug test so it wouldn¿t show that he used drugs. Then Lt got two strikes for failing two drug test¿s after he heard that if he failed another drug test he would be banned from the NFL. So Lt got serious by going to rehab and cleaning himself up. I would recommend this book to anybody who wants to find out the real truth about Lawrence Taylor. Also because it¿s a good book to read, and its very interesting. Also to anybody who likes football. And also I would recommend it because it shows you the affects that drugs have on someone¿s behavior. And it gives you the real facts about Lt¿s drug habit. Also if your favorite football is Lawrence Taylor. Excellent
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is about a hall of fame football player who drugs at one point took over his life.Lt started using cocaine as a social thing, but then it got to a point that it became a daily thing. The NFL started doing random drug test¿s Lt would tell people to urine in a cup for him so he can cheat the drug test it wouldn¿t show that he used drugs. Then Lt got two strikes for failing two drug test¿s after he heard that if he failed another drug test he would be banned from the NFL. So Lt got serious by going to rehab and cleaning himself up. I would recommend this book to anybody who wants to find out the real truth about Lawrence Taylor. Also because it¿s a good book to read, and its very interesting. Also to anybody who likes football. And also I would recommend it because it shows you the affects that drugs have on someone¿s behavior. And it gives you the real facts about Lt¿s drug habit.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is great for young readers who don't like to read or are from a troubled background. It holds your interest throughout the book and shows the hardships one can overcome if they are willing. I highly recomend this book to everyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was great and i highly reconmend it!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. I read it in a two-day span, and I got alot from it. I breaks down year-by-year in his career and shows what drugs, women, and other things can do to your life. It also shows that you can battle drugs, and turn your life around.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book. I was thrown off at first by the actual writing, but Lawrence Taylor HAD written in the beginning that it was his book, his story, and before long I felt as if I could actually place his voice to the words on the page. So often LT seemed to be having the time of his life, but for all those parties wherein he was happy, his wife was at home feeling very unhappy. I wonder if he ever thought of that? I wasn't in Mrs. Taylor's shoes, so I can't judge her thinking, but I don't think I could stay married to a man who cheated so carelessly and without regard to my children's feelings. That said, there wasn't a boring spot in the entire book. In fact, not discounting the seriousness of LT's problems, for which his fans wished him well, there were so many funny stories. I especially got a kick out LT's comments about Bill Belichick. I do hope Mr. Taylor remains in good health. And one more thing. I think his new wife could take him in a fight!