The Next Level

To friends and family, Vernon Turner is a very private man who is known to be his own worst critic and who finds it difficult to talk about himself. To his fans, he is the talented athlete that played professionally for the Buffalo Bills, LA Rams, Detroit Lions and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. So it was a huge surprise to those that know him to discover he had written the story of his life – a life that had its share of tragedy and dysfunction, but at times was greatly touched by happiness and inspiration.

In The Next Level: A Game I Had To Play! - a book that was seventeen years in the making - Turner steps out of his comfort zone and reveals secrets that even some family members were not aware of. That’s because Turner made sure people only saw one side of him - the success and accomplishments; he was careful never to show the hurt from childhood events that accompanied his days and haunted his nights.

The Next Level is both a motivating and inspirational story that tells of a young man who had to face insurmountable odds to save his family, and in the process achieve a childhood dream. Turner sees himself as ‘a work in progress,’ and while he readily admits to making mistakes he has learned that “my past experiences became my toolbox for future journeys.”

Turner shares the challenges of not only growing up in the 70’s in a predominantly African-American neighborhood of Brooklyn, but facing school days and football with his 5’6” and 98 lbs stature. This fascinating and candid account shows readers what Turner’s life was like from age five to the present, and what was really going on behind the big smile – moments of pure joy overshadowed by agonizing periods of pain and regret that will be with him forever.

While Turner remembers the good times he and his cousins spent at Nana’s house; his beloved compassionate and principled grandmother he openly describes as ‘his heart,’ he also remembers the bad times with his mother’s addiction.

In The Next Level readers get to know the deep thinker who over-analyzes and dissects everything in his life, his family, and some of the amazing individuals he believes were meant to cross his path, learning how this all played an important part in his life.

Turner admits that while writing his book was perhaps one of the most difficult things he has ever done because it forced him to remember things that were long buried in his mind and heart, by sharing his story he overcame obstacles, learned never to miss an opportunity, and now tries to never take anyone for granted. He hopes the messages in his book will connect with readers in a truly inspiring way because leaving his mark and making a difference is extremely important to him. He believes everyone needs to ask themselves: “If I died today, how would I be remembered?”

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