Jerome Bettis

Graham sits down with Jerome Bettis in the Steelers’ locker room. The NFL legend recalls selling drugs in inner-city Detroit, the sport he loved long before football and the strong influence of former Notre Dame coach Lou Holtz. Bettis also shares why he nearly retired the year before the Steelers won it all and the significance of his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Plus, Graham gets a cooking lesson at Jerome Bettis Grille 36 in downtown Pittsburgh.

Jerome Bettis


Jerome Bettis: Bowling 300 better than Super Bowl win

Jerome Bettis remembers choosing football over bowling – despite recognition as one of the best teen bowlers in Michigan – and says bowling a perfect game (a score of 300) trumps winning a Super Bowl.

Jerome Bettis: The hardest hit I ever took

Jerome Bettis details the hardest hit he ever took, which occurred on a goal-line play during his rookie season, against the Oilers. Bettis says this was also the moment he realized that every opposing player in the league could change his life with just one hit.

Jerome Bettis: I nearly quit before Steelers’ chapter

Jerome Bettis on the St. Louis Rams contract dispute that created tension with his head coach and nearly led to Bettis walking away from the game forever. Plus, he shares the vindication of beating up on the Rams later, as a Pittsburgh Steeler.

Jerome Bettis: Coach Cowher fired me from coin tosses

Jerome Bettis recounts the coin toss misunderstanding that led to what’s known as the ‘Jerome Bettis rule.’ The infamous coin toss occurred on Thanksgiving Day in 1998, as the Steelers and the Lions went into overtime.

Jerome Bettis on retiring, unretiring, winning it all

Jerome Bettis on his emotional retirement speech to Steelers teammates in 2005, then the decision to come back for one more year and try to win Super Bowl XL, hosted by his hometown of Detroit.

Jerome Bettis: Petty theft and my childhood business

Jerome Bettis shares the story of when he sold stolen candy at school as a kid, and how it all went south once he took on a partner and a competitor stepped into the market.

Jerome Bettis: Drugs and guns were our only option

Jerome Bettis on why selling drugs as a kid in inner city Detroit was the only option available, shooting at rival drug dealers, and the moments that motivated him to get out of the business.

Jerome Bettis: Face to face with a potential kidnapper

Jerome Bettis says he considered carrying a gun and reverting back to old ways to counter a kidnapping threat.

Jerome Bettis: I picked up football to get into college

Jerome Bettis on why – as the youngest of three kids – football offered him the best shot at affording college and the strong work ethic instilled by his parents.

Jerome Bettis: Embarrassed by Notre Dame’s Lou Holtz

Jerome Bettis on winning scholarship negotiations with Notre Dame’s Lou Holtz, then later being humbled by the head coach as he was called out in front of his entire team.

Jerome Bettis: My Oscar-worthy fake injury

Jerome Bettis shares football injury stories, including why he faked a knee injury, the worst pain he’s ever felt and Bettis’ serious concern for the long-term effects of taking so many hits to the head throughout his career.

2 reasons Jerome Bettis was banned from pick-up games

Jerome Bettis and his brother John talk about the opposite reasons Jerome was banned from neighborhood football games and what it’s like to be a Bettis in Pittsburgh.

Jerome Bettis shows off his Pittsburgh restaurant

Jerome Bettis takes Graham on a tour of Jerome Bettis Grille 36, including the wall of fame, Jerome’s private lounge and a tutorial on cooking one of its signature dishes.