Seven Great Family Football Movies Streaming Right Now

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blog top 11-08 still from Remember the Titans

Something about football—at least the brand of football we see in the movies—seems primed to inspire. The gridiron serves as a sort of narrative crucible, where boys and men get knocked down and get back up again, where collections of individuals transform into a team, where big issues can be distilled to their essence.

And it’s often a proving ground for faith, too. Why, I’d bet more Christian films have been made about football than almost any other subject. Excepting the Bible itself, of course.

So with us now midway in the football season, Plugged In thought this was a perfect time to roll out a few quality football movies that might be suitable to watch with your whole family—especially if, y’know, your favorite real football team isn’t doing so hot. And we’ve also told you where you can stream them.

The Blind Side movie poster

The Blind Side (PG-13, 2009): Sandra Bullock won an Oscar for her portrayal of the real-life Leigh Anne Tuohy, who encouraged her family to take in the gigantic, homeless teen Michael Oher. He eventually became a stand-out offensive lineman for Old Miss and a No. 1 NFL draft pick. The film contains some light Christian messages, but mostly it’s a movie about changing lives—and how sometimes when we demonstrate charity, we’re the ones who benefit. The film has some language issues, so be sure to check out our full review. You can stream this film free with a subscription to Amazon Prime or HBO Max.

Greater (PG, 2016): Not much was expected of Brandon Burlsworth when he first walked on to try out for Arkansas’s collegiate football team. But the bespectacled Burlsworth soon won his coaches, team and the entire state over with his talent, work ethic, modesty and unshakable faith. While the film can be sad and difficult at times—Burlsworth tragically died in a car accident shortly after he was drafted—Greater reminds us that God is there with us, even in life’s darkest moments. It’s available now on Netflix.

Greater movie poster
Remember the Titans movie poster

Remember the Titans (PG, 2000): Even after the Civil Rights movement, T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia, was still firmly segregated. That all changed in 1971, when integration was forced on the school and its proud football program, infusing it with a whole bunch of Black players and a Black head coach, Herman Boone. Could the racial strife in the school and city be healed by one football team? When that football team is led by a guy played by Denzel Washington, it sure can. This might be my favorite football movie, if I’m being honest. It’s worth a look—and if you have a subscription to Disney+, you can look for free.

Run the Race (PG, 2018): The Truett brothers have had a tough go of it. Their mother died. Their father abandoned them. One of the brothers, Dave, turns to football as an outlet—but that path also seems to be cut short after Dave suffers a catastrophic knee injury. What’s left? Faith, that’s what. Produced by Tim Tebow, Run the Race offers plenty of great messages as it plays, but it doesn’t shy away from difficult questions, either. It’s available for free on tubi.

Run the Race movie poster
We Are Marshall movie poster

We Are Marshall (PG, 2006): On Nov. 14, 1970, a DC-9 chartered by Marshall University’s football program crashed in West Virginia, just a mile away from the landing runway. All 75 people aboard—including most of the football team—were killed. Instead of suspending the program, Marshall perseveres, installing Jack Lengyel (Mathew Fox) as the head coach and bringing back Red Dawson (Matthew McConaughey) as an assistant. We Are Marshall doesn’t chronicle a National Championship-winning team, but rather a team that exemplifies character, will and guts. Dare you not to cry. It’s available on HBO Max.

Woodlawn (PG, 2016): Directed by Jon and Andrew Erwin (who are behind the upcoming American Underdog, still another football movie), Woodlawn again dives into the thorny issue of racism—using as its backdrop the newly integrated Woodlawn High School in Birmingham, Alabama. Coach Tandy Geralds acknowledges the reality. “None of us chose this,” he tells students, Black and white. We can choose together what we will do with it. So if it is anger that unites us, then let’s use that anger to win, boys.” And so they do. You can stream Woodlawn on the Christian streaming service Pure Flix.

Woodlawn movie poster
12 Mighty Orphans movie poster

12 Mighty Orphans (PG-13, 2021): The Great Depression was a time of struggle, and few kids struggled more mightily than the kids living at Fort Worth’s Masonic Home. Some have been abandoned by their parents. Most are absolutely destitute. They’re being used almost as slave labor at the orphanage itself. But Coach Rusty Russell has a plan for them. And even though the orphanage can’t even afford a football at first, the coach molds them into one of Texas’s mightiest powerhouses. The movie has some tough content concerns for a film rated PG-13, but the messages it offers are equally strong. And while you can’t stream it for free anywhere, you can rent it for $4.99 on Amazon or $5.99 from Apple TV or YouTube.

Paul Asay

Paul Asay has been part of the Plugged In staff since 2007, watching and reviewing roughly 15 quintillion movies and television shows. He’s written for a number of other publications, too, including Time, The Washington Post and Christianity Today. The author of several books, Paul loves to find spirituality in unexpected places, including popular entertainment, and he loves all things superhero. His vices include James Bond films, Mountain Dew and terrible B-grade movies. He’s married, has two children and a neurotic dog, runs marathons on occasion and hopes to someday own his own tuxedo. Feel free to follow him on Twitter @AsayPaul.