Story of Undrafted “American Underdog” Kurt Warner
Released in theaters across the country this month.
The film centers on Warner’s unique story and years of challenges and setbacks that could have derailed his aspirations of becoming an NFL player. Through the support of his wife, Brenda, and the encouragement of his family, coaches and teammates, Warner persevered and showed the world a champion’s character.
Undrafted in 1994, Warner endured a humbling path when he first arrived in the NFL. He began with a brief stint in training camp with the Green Bay Packers. After his release prior to the regular season, Warner spent a combined four seasons with the Iowa Barnstormers in the Arena Football League and the Amsterdam Admirals in NFL Europe.
He threw 183 touchdowns during his three seasons in the AFL, leading the Barnstormers to back-to-back Arena Bowl appearances in 1996 and 1997.
On Sept. 12, 1999, Warner made his first NFL start for the St. Louis Rams in their season opener against the Baltimore Ravens. He stepped in as the replacement for the injured Trent Green, who was supposed to be leading one of the most explosive offenses in the league.
Warner went on to pass for 309 yards and three touchdowns, leading the Rams to a 27-10 win. He went on to throw for 300 or more yards in 52 games throughout his 12-year career — 30 with the Rams and 22 with the Arizona Cardinals. Both marks stood as franchise records at the time of his retirement.
Warner played in three Super Bowls.
His first appearance came in Super Bowl XXXIV with the Rams in his first season as the starting QB. He passed for 414 yards (at the time a Super Bowl record) and two touchdowns, leading to the first Super Bowl victory in Rams history.
Though he came out on the losing end in his final two Super Bowl appearances, Warner threw for a combined 742 yards in those game, bringing his three-game total to 1,156, the most passing yards in Super Bowl history at the time of his retirement.
Warner also was only the third quarterback in NFL history to start a Super Bowl for two different teams.
Hailing from Burlington, Iowa, Warner is the first Iowa native, first former NFL Europe player and second former Arena League player (joining Joe DeLamielleure) to be enshrined into Pro Football Hall of Fame.