The 2014 NFL season kicks off this Thursday, September 4 with a showdown between the Green Bay Packers and Super Bowl champs the Seattle Seahawks. Football season brings to mind a lot of things — beer, yelling, the usual — but it also reminds us of some super-serious '90s memories. Yes, we're talking about the hot dudes of fictional football.
The 1990s gave pretty sweet footballer roles to our favorite dudes of the big and small screen. In no particular order, here are five of our favorite football crushes.
Jason London as Randall "Pink" Floyd, Dazed and Confused
Randall "Pink" Floyd was pretty much the whole package: smart, rebellious, fit, and had a belt buckle that doubled as a little pipe. Pink was pretty slender and super-rebellious, making him an unlikely quarterback, but when he stood up for his right to get drunk sometimes and still play football, we swooned a little.
Plus, that half-unbuttoned shirt provides a pretty amazing view.
James Van Der Beek as Mox, Varsity Blues
Mox is like Dawson, only with better hair! Also, turning down Ali Larter clad only in whipped cream takes great strength of character, which makes for an even better quarterback. Or Ivy League student. Whatever he wants to do.
Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Rod Tidwell, Jerry Maguire
Okay, so flops like Boat Trip might make it pretty easy to forget how fine Cuba Gooding, Jr. was as Wide Receiver (hottest position in the NFL!) Rod Tidwell in Jerry Maguire. How he didn't end up as the romantic lead over Tom Cruise, we'll never know, although his on-screen family is super-adorable. Show us the money, Cuba!
Paul Walker as Lance Harbor, Varsity Blues
1999 was a career-launching year for the late Paul Walker, including his role as all state quarterback Lance Harbor in Varsity Blues! While just as nice of a guy as James Van Der Beek's Mox, Lance was a classically-handsome jock. Varsity was basically just a crush factory for all types.
Mario Lopez as A.C. Slater, Saved By the Bell
A.C. Slater, as the token jock, played all the sports on Saved By the Bell. Unlike Zack "preppy" Morris, who was kind of good at running and basketball (except mostly just good at breaking our hearts), A.C. was the star quarterback of the Bayside High Tigers football team and an accomplished wrestler! According to Zack, A.C. was All-City in four sports, although we've only seen him on the football field, in the ring, and on the basketball court. (However, we got to see none of his athletic prowess, save a few push-ups and a dance routine, in the recent Lifetime biopic Saved By the Bell: The Unauthorized Story.)
Who's the star player of your heart? Let us know in the comments!