Netflix still doesn't have live sports, but it's about to debut the next best thing. On July 12, the streaming giant will release Quarterback, a new docuseries offering unprecedented access to the NFL's best players, including Super Bowl winner and reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes, Kirk Cousins, and Marcus Mariota. The eight-episode series is the first project in a landmark partnership between Netflix and the NFL, which agreed to mic up its star quarterbacks for the duration of the 2022-2023 season.
As the title suggests, Quarterback follows three signal callers as they navigate a grueling, 18-week regular season (and playoff runs) while juggling the demands of fame and their family lives. For Mahomes, who broke the record for most offensive yards in a single season last year, that means leading the Kansas City Chiefs to another Super Bowl victory while bonding with a new group of wide receivers and battling a postseason ankle injury. Though it's difficult to top Mahomes' season, Cousins finds new success as the Minnesota Vikings win eight of their first nine games, improving upon their 8-9 record the season prior and clinching the NFC North for the first time since 2017. Meanwhile, in the NFC South, Mariota faces a tumultuous first season with the Atlanta Falcons, who fail to reach the playoffs for the fifth consecutive year.
The players also invite the cameras into their homes as they introduce the world to their children, partners, and family members. The docuseries — which is produced by NFL great Peyton Manning — offers a window into the Mahomes household as he and his wife, Brittany, welcome a son during the regular season, just as it gives Cousins an opportunity to open up about balancing his hectic schedule with his responsibilities to his wife and two children. As Mahomes tells Netflix, "I'm excited for fans to get an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at an unforgettable season for the entire Chiefs organization and for my family. This new Netflix series will show the time, preparation and balance that it takes to be an NFL quarterback and perform on the biggest stage."
Mahomes is correct when he teases that Quarterback will go where no NFL documentary has gone before. The league's other docuseries collaboration, Hard Knocks, is far more limited in scope: With the exception of the recent In Season: The Arizona Cardinals continuation, it follows a single team throughout the preseason before bidding them farewell right when the games start to actually matter. Plus, Hard Knocks specifically follows struggling teams (as the title suggests), as organizations that have reached the playoffs in the past two years are exempt from participating. Traditionally, teams featured on Hard Knocks end the season around the .500 mark, with many failing to make the playoffs yet again.
Quarterback, on the other hand, gives viewers an inside track to two of the best teams in the NFL (sorry, Falcons), not to mention the undisputed leader of the league in Mahomes. There are plenty of 30 for 30-style documentaries about Super Bowl seasons produced after the fact, but never have football fans been given such intimate access to a player at the peak of his career. Love or hate the Chiefs, that's something worth cheering about.
Quarterback premieres July 12 on Netflix. Watch the trailer above.
Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.