Paul Zimmerman, a senior writer at Sports Illustrated since 1979, videotapes and charts as many as eight NFL games a week from his home. It's safe to say that Dr. Z has watched more NFL games than any other person on the planet. In addition to his regular columns for SI, he contributes Insider, Power Rankings and Mailbag columns to SI.com.
Dr. Z is the author of seven books on the NFL, including The Thinking Man's Guide to Pro Football. His inside analysis and opinions are rooted in more than 50 years of playing and watching football.
As a 15-year-old, Zimmerman sparred with Ernest Hemingway in a Manhattan gym. He sustained four broken noses as an offensive lineman in high school (Horace Mann High in the Bronx, N.Y.), at two colleges (Stanford and Columbia) and for his Army team (the Western Area Command Rhinos, in Germany). He also played semi-professionally in New Jersey for the Paterson Pioneers and the Morristown Colonials.
Before joining SI, Zimmerman worked for the New York Journal-American and the New York World-Telegram & Sun, and spent 13 years at the New York Post, where he covered pro football and three Olympic Games. He was one of the few journalists to get close to the Israeli compound during the 1972 hostage-taking in Munich; he bucked two lines of security guards and took a rifle butt to the head.
Zimmerman and his wife, to whom he often refers in his columns on CNNSI.com, live in Mountain Lakes, N.J.