New NFL ‘Documentaries’ Show What Became of 2 Fictional Players From Jerry Maguire

Parodies promote movie's 20th anniversary

Headshot of Christine Birkner

It's been 20 years since Cameron Crowe's football-themed romantic comedy Jerry Maguire hit theaters, permanently entering the catchphrase "Show me the money" into the lexicon and garnering an Oscar for Cuba Gooding Jr. To promote a newly-released 20th anniversary Blu-Ray edition of the movie, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and the NFL teamed up to release two parody mockumentaries about the fictional football careers of Gooding Jr.'s character, star wide receiver Rod Tidwell, and Frank Cushman, the cocky young quarterback played by Jerry O'Connell.

The videos, "Rod Tidwell: A Football Life" and "Frank Cushman: A Football Life," feature appearances from the movie's stars, including O'Connell as Cushman; Beau Bridges, who played his father, Matt; Jay Mohr as agent Bob Sugar; a grown-up Jonathan Lipnicki as Jerry's stepson, Ray; and Aries Spears, who played Tidwell's brother, Tee Pee.

Although stars Tom Cruise and Gooding Jr. only are shown in movie clips and photos, there are plenty of other fun nuggets for fans of the movie. Various '90s celebs including Shaquille O'Neal, Coolio, Vanilla Ice, Salt-N-Pepa, and NFL stars Kurt Warner and Terrell Owens wax nostalgic about Tidwell's football prowess and popularity with the celebrity set. Salt confesses that she almost had an affair with Tidwell, but Vanilla Ice points out that regardless of how many supermodels hit on him, he was always faithful to his wife, Regina King's Marcee.

In the Cushman video, the young NFL star whom Jerry Maguire loses as a client to his slimy protégée, Sugar, O'Connell, as Cushman, talks about how his NFL career was sadly derailed by a bad case of athlete's foot. He opens the Frank Cushman Children's Rehabilitation Clinic for kids with "misunderstood and underestimated sports ailments" like tennis elbow and swimmer's ear. One of the kids at the clinic says of Cushman, "He played in the NFL? I thought he fixed cars or something."

"Maguire must've influenced my son more than I realized," Bridges, as Matt Cushman, says. "He's become an actual humanitarian, and he really does love those little bastards." 

The videos are designed to remind fans of the movie's enduring appeal, said Lexine Wong, senior evp, worldwide marketing at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

"The movie completely holds up, especially because of the marriage of sports and romance," Wong said. "There are so many great moments that everyone remembers. Jerry O'Connell, Beau Bridges and Jay Mohr were such great sports to do this. Everyone had fun with it and really got into it."

Crowe even weighed in on the project, providing the NFL and Sony with notes on the content.

"He was quite pleased to hear where his characters ended up," said Dan Dieffenbach, coordinating producer of features at NFL Media. "It gave us an opportunity to tell a great story. It's couched in our world, the NFL, but it crosses over into pop culture. It's a great fusion of football content and pop culture content in the sweet spot of Jerry Maguire. We're reliving the characters in a really fun way, and the reaction from fans has been great so far."


Check out the extended trailers below, and the full videos here.

@ChristineBirkne Christine Birkner is a Chicago-based freelance writer who covers marketing and advertising.