Brian Piccolo started his career with the Chicago Bears professional football team as a free agent member of the practice squad in 1965, with increasing playing time and responsibilities coming each year. At the beginning of the 1969 season, he was moved to the starting fullback position for the Bears.
During the November 16, 1969 game against the Atlanta Falcons, Piccolo asked to be removed from the game due to breathing difficulties. When the Bears returned to Chicago, he was diagnosed with embryonal cell carcinoma. Surgery was performed to remove the tumor, then to remove his left lung and pectoral muscle. By early June, 1970, the cancer had spread to his liver and other organs. Brian Piccolo died on June 16, 1970.
Brian Piccolo: A Short Season is the story of a promising athlete whose career was cut short by cancer. It examines the off-the-field influences and activities that were important to him as well as tracing the course and effects of his illness.