In "Under Pressure: How Playing Football Almost Cost Me Everything and Why I'd Do It All Again," Ray Lucas provides fans with a timely, uncensored look at pro football's play-at-all-costs culture. Overcoming questions about his size and skills as a quarterback, Lucas persevered and went on to play seven seasons in the NFL. His professional football career, however, came to a sudden end at age 30, when a neck injury caused him to collapse on the sideline during training camp. Instructed by NFL doctors that surgery wasn't an option, Lucas turned to painkillers for relief, but as his tolerance for medication escalated and his NFL insurance coverage expired, he began to plan his suicide. Just days before he planned to take his life, Lucas was put in touch with a group of doctors who agreed to perform neck surgery free of charge. In this tell-all, Lucas shares how—in a league without guaranteed contracts and careers that average just a few seasons long—players in the training room are perceived to lack the toughness necessary to succeed on the field. He discusses how this prevailing attitude leads to widespread abuse of painkillers and leaves many former players unable to lead a normal life once their playing career ends while also sharing details on how he overcame his drug addiction and turned his own life around.
Ray Lucas's memoir is co-authored by David Seigerman and has a foreword from Bill Parcells. The book, set to release on September 1, 2014 is published by Triumph Books.