Detroit Lions Wide Receiver Calvin Johnson on Cover of ESPN The Magazine’s 2012 NFL Preview; on Newsstands August 24

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Detroit Lions Wide Receiver Calvin Johnson on Cover of ESPN The Magazine’s 2012 NFL Preview; on Newsstands August 24

Are you ready for some football? That’s a rhetorical question. We’re America – of course we’re ready for football. We are football. We’re the artistry of Calvin Johnson. The perfection of Peyton Manning. We are opulent, violent, exceptional, and loud. Are you ready for some football? To embrace a sport that has trafficked in human bounties. To celebrate obesity. To wrestle with the notion that brain damage is a fair price for a Sunday diversion. Just enjoy the game – while you can. Concussions, Bountygate, lawsuits – on September 5 it all fades into the background. Front and center: football.

ESPN The Magazine’s NFL Preview on newsstands Friday, August 24, will tackle a variety of issues surrounding the NFL, taking the subject of concussions head on with features such as:

  • Pulitzer Prize winner J.R. Moehringer’s “Football is Dead. Long Live Football,” breaking down what football will look like in the future, why people think it’s going to die and how the sport is so linked with American ethos that its decline is synonymous with the decline of our country itself.
  • “Neither Saint Nor Sinner,” a story from The Mag’s Dave Fleming highlighting the dual roles of Cleveland Browns’ Scott Fujita on both sides of Bountygate.
  • “Concussion Confidential,” where 320 preps leveled with The Mag on concussions. This is part of an overall “NFL Confidential” also featured in the NFL Preview, which polls 48 NFL players for tough answers on sensitive subjects. Highlights include how players think the game will be more—not less—popular in 20 years, that they want Tebow on their team, how many of their relatives ask them to quit … and more thoughts they would never share on the record. For more on NFL Confidential check out ESPN’s Front Row: http://bit.ly/MagNFLPreview.

Go to outtakes from Megatron’s  cover shoot http://es.pn/R3mY1i and http://es.pn/OylrlB for behind-the- scenes video where he discusses the upcoming season, the Lions on-and off-field troubles, and more.

NFL Preview Features:

Just try not to watch

If you don’t think Lions’ Calvin Johnson is worth $132 million, you haven’t been paying attention. It’s players like the Lions’ wide receiver that make the game of football unquittable – even for fans concerned about its danger and health risks. The Mag tells the man otherwise known as “Megatron’s” story through the eyes of his coaches, teammates, and fans who cannot stop watching him. By Elizabeth Merrill

Help me help you

The Manning Way has arrived in Denver. Having Peyton Manning on your roster means your team can claim the biggest football junkie ever to exist. His lengthy film sessions and offseason workouts are known to push his teammates to work even harder. Here The Mag takes a look at what Manning’s presence has done to the culture of the Broncos.   By Ryan McGee

Eat, play, live?

Rookie Matt Kalil of the Minnesota Vikings forks in 7,000 calories a day. Retired vets warn that the reward is not worth the weight. NFL linemen keep getting bigger and bigger, as the game gets fiercer and faster. During their careers, they are continuously asked to put on more pounds, but upon retirement it’s a race to lose in hopes of saving their hearts and bodies as they age. By Kevin Van Valkenburg

Running with the pack

Scouting reports, Vegas odds and record projections. The Mag has all 32 teams covered – to the decimal point.

Beyond the NFL

Also included the latest issue of ESPN The Magazine is Howard Bryant’s column on Serena, Venus, and Richard Williams on the eve of the US Open as the sisters put the finishing touches on their landmark careers, it’s time for the vindication of their father begin. Also in this issue, backpage columnist Chris Jones examines Armando Galarraga and how since his near-perfect game, he has been traded, released, out of baseball, and now he’s pitching for the hopeless Astros – and how this is why he is so good at appreciating every new opportunity. And in college football, a profile on West Virginia’s Geno Smith, and his Heisman chances a year after Robert Griffin III won on a non-contender.

Media Contact: Carrie Kreiswirth – 860-766-6042

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