Power Ranking The Post-High School Careers Of The Cast Of 'Friday Night Lights'
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Power Ranking The Post-High School Careers Of The Cast Of 'Friday Night Lights'

By Joanna Robinson | Seriously Random Lists | October 21, 2013 | Comments ()


13. Julie Taylor aka Aimee Teegarden: Little Julie Taylor is trying her damnedest to separate herself from the blonde bangs but I’m not sure it’s working to her advantage. Teegarden doesn’t have much of anything going on these days.
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12. Matty Saracen aka Zach Gilford: The nicest thing we can say about Matty is that he had a gorgeous wedding to Nikki from Lost this summer and the less said about The Mob Doctor and Off The Map, the better.

11. Jess Merriweather aka Jurnee Smollett-Bell: Officially my favorite young female from the FNLcast, Jurnee his still hitting below her weight class. Jason Katims has given her something fun to do on Parenthood and she was perfectly delightful on True Blood, but she needs her own show.
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10. Jason Street aka Scott Porter: I think it’s worth noting that Scott Porter wears Crocs and has a dog who wears a bow tie. If you’ve learned nothing else from this post, you’ve learned that.

9. Smash aka Gaius Charles: He’s making good Grey’s Anatomy money and while I would prefer to see him on Shonda Rhimes other ABC drama, I can’t blame him for getting paid on the regular.

8. Tyra Collette aka Adrianne Palicki: I mean, she was the female lead in a surprisingly fun franchise rejuvenator and goes on vacations to Mexico with Connie Britton. How did YOU spend your summer vacation?

7. Tim Riggins aka Taylor Kitsch: Why yes I did pick the most hobo Jimmy Buffet photo of Tim Riggins but I feel it accurately reflects his tumble from fame. He’s still doing well comparatively and has a really interesting Ryan Murphy-helmed TV movie in the works about HIV/AIDS activists in the 80s where he sort of looks like a Wall Street Malfoy. But it’s a far cry from the Next Big Thing status he enjoyed a few years ago.

6. Luke Cafferty aka Matt Lauria: As far as I can tell Matt Lauria’s gets paid to look adorable and make-out with Mae Whitman on a weekly basis on Parenthood. That’s my personal definition of #winning.
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5. Lyla Garrity aka Minka Kelly : Though her Charlie’s Angels reboot may have failed, good old Lyla is back November 4th with a flashy sci-fi show on FOX, Almost Human. I know, I know, FOX has a rich tradition of mishandling sci-fi, but this show has Karl Urban in the lead so I’m a little less concerned. Added bonus for Minka personally? 24/7 access to the Cap-Ass.

4. Mrs. Coach aka Connie Britton: I’d like to rank Mrs. Coach higher but I just can’t get behind Nashville and I definitely can’t get behind those pants. What is even happening, y’all?
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3. Coach aka Kyle Chandler: Kyle Chandler has always topped these post-FNL lists, but there are a few young pups outpacing him these days. Chandler was brilliant as the opposite of Coach in this summers Spectacular Now and he’s filming Vatican for Showtime so odds are those pups won’t be ahead for long.

2. Lance aka Landry aka Jesse Plemons: Before this summer I never expected to rank Jesse Plemons this high. He was always my personal favorite, but I never really expected him to break through. But then came Todd. Delightful, creepy Todd and before you can say “Meth Damon” everyone’s talking about Jesse Plemons. (I’ll take a quick sec to give a nod to Herc aka Kevin Rankin who was also great on Breaking Bad this year and in seasons past on Justified.) Plemons seems content, for now, to keep it low key. He’s also a musician (Crucifictorious uber alles) and eyeglasses aficionado. You can see him soon in a high-profile Lance Armstrong biopic opposite Ben Foster.

1. Vince Howard aka Michael B. Jordan: We’re huge massive Michael B. Jordan fans around these parts and though Fruitvale wasn’t the smash hit most people were expecting it to be, Jordan has gotten enough notice to get the official Marvel superhero nod and has been cast as Johnny Storm aka The Human Torch in the Fantastic Four reboot. He’s also in the running for a juicy role in the Star Wars films. So, yeah, he’s more than a rising star. He has risen.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • mudywaters

    Fun article! Taylor Kitsch is clearly the biggest disappointment.

  • BlackRabbit

    Minka Kelly does look very...relaxed in that photo.

  • ApeDrape

    I was wondering what would happen to Jesse plemons.

  • Wigamer

    Matt Saracen is still the most heartbreakingly adorable thing that has ever been a thing. He aroused all of my maternal feelings, and some other, less comfortable ones as well.

  • F'mal DeHyde

    I'm sad to see Julie Taylor's adorable cheeks have sunken in. What a beautiful girl she was on that show.

  • ApeDrape

    She's still got it.

  • Jifaner

    That just happens when you get older. I had a very round face as a teen, in my mid-20s suddenly cheekbones appeared.

  • AvaLehra

    Sorry, I just spent the last 10 minutes being a peeping tom on Matt Saracen's wedding. First: the ginormous tear in his eye when he sees his cutie -- adorable! Second: who shows that much boob to a wedding? I'm talking to you, sassy lady with blazer and no shirt underneath.

  • Rebecca Hachmyer

    The wedding looked absolutely stunning! But now I left wondering about the "personal loss" to which the photographer alluded.... which might mean I've crossed the line into creeping tom territory...

  • Tim

    forgive me for not knowing, but who's the one in the plaid in the top picture?

  • Michelle

    It's Herc, whom we met in season 1 when he was Jason's roommate in rehab. He later introduced Jason to quad rugby, and thus began the inevitable downward spiral of the Jason/Lyla relationship.

  • Tim

    He looks too much like a nice person for me to have recognized him

  • Michelle

    I'm a nerd. Sorry/not sorry.

  • That first picture after the header? I don't know if that girl was trying to make herself look like a RealDoll, but if she was, she totally nailed it.

  • John W

    Wow I didn't think they the cojones to do it but Jordan is going to be Johnny Storm. Now they have my attention.

  • stella

    Wait, what? Is that true? Because if it is, awesome.

  • BlackRabbit

    I would have preferred he be Luke Cage, just to bring out a character who could carry his own movie, but hey, I'll watch him.

  • Guest

    Oh, also, Kyle Chandler in a priest outfit. Yes, I was a Catholic school girl, and that picture is lethal.

  • AvaLehra


  • Guest

    The only justice for what they did to Wallace in The Wire is that Michael B. Jordan is a huge movie star bringing joy to millions. Which might actually happen and makes me extremely happy.

    But Joanna, please don't use "female" like this:
    Officially my favorite young female from the FNLcast, Jurnee his still hitting below her weight class.

    "young woman" is far more appropriate and un-objectifying :)

  • rocky

    Yes, this. Thank you.

  • Guest

    What's with the downvotes? I can't stand when people say "female" to refer to a girl or a woman. Guess that's unpopular?

  • JoannaRobinson

    What are you even talking about, kid? Female is the scientific term?!

  • Jifaner

    It's often used in a demeaning manner, though that clearly wasn't your intent. I wouldn't say someone was my "favorite male", I'd say favorite actor/guy or maybe male *actor* but not likely. Somehow just being referred to as female without it describing something feels diminishing. It's a pet peeve of mine as well.

  • JoannaRobinson

    But it is a qualifier. "Favorite young female from the FNL cast" distinguishes her from my favorite young male from the FNL cast (Plemons) or my favorite older female from the cast (Britton). I'm really amazed this is a thing.

  • Hazelwazelkitty

    I'm really amazed that you didn't know this was a thing. It's well known that the use of female (adjective) used as a noun is considered to be highly demeaning to women. When I read 'female' used as a noun, or when I hear it in conversation, it sticks out immediately. This is really common knowledge in the feminist sphere, and also amongst grammarians.

  • Guest


    I know it's a thing that happens. Adjectives become nouns... transitive verbs become intransitive verbs (or they always were and were just hiding). Life goes on. I call groups of girls "guys" all the time. But "female" strikes me as a bit too scientific.

  • Nicole_OCTV

    I can sort of get the 'too scientific' complaint (although I don't agree with it), but I don't get how 'female' is objectifying. It seems odd that you consider the word both clinical and offensive.

  • Guest

    Well, I suppose it's because "female" is typically an adjective to differentiate from "male" and can be applied to all manner of creature, including humans. It's clinical in nature and, I feel, robs women of their essential humanity. It reduces them to their sex organs. The same can be said for referring to men as "males".

    For reference: http://www.quickanddirtytips.c...

  • Repo

    Gilford fulfilled my lifelong dream of co-starring in a Schwarzenegger flick this year so I would say not bad Matty, not bad.

  • apsutter

    I'm hoping Nashville get cancelled so that Connie can get on another season of AHS

  • KC

    Ah no, man. It may not be the most perfect show but its worth it for some of the music!

  • Michelle

    Also, does anyone else watch Hart of Dixie? (No? Shut up. It's cute.) Because someone needs to have a hair intervention for Scott Porter. STAT.

  • Nnnnnope

    Whatserface (Becky?) who Mrs. Coach helped with her abortion popped up recently. She was on that awful final season of Dexter. She played a completely pointless character. Do I repeat myself? Then I repeat myself.

  • Nicole_OCTV

    God, I was so focused on everything else that was awful about the Dexter finale that I forgot to consider how utterly pointless Mazuka's entire arc was. Jesus, what a shitshow.

  • stella

    Oh thats a shame. I really liked that actress.

  • dizzylucy

    I really root for all of them, I have such fondness for FNL. Especially glad to see MBJ and Lance doing so well, and I wholly agree that Jurnee needs her own show.

  • stella

    God Michael B Jordans smile is so dreamy.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Pretty sure I'd switch teams for the man. And also invite the wrath of my totally racist grandmother.

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    Would she be more upset about the gayness or the blackness? I'm always curious to know which one trumps which.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    The blackness. Oddly, gay things don't seem to particularly upset her.

    But Michael B. Jordan? Totally worth the disowning. Assuming I'd actually be sufficiently into the gayness; I'm thinking yeah.

  • Michelle

    HOLD ON. Connie Britton and Adrianne Palicki have vacationed together? Why are they not posting their presumably awesome friendship all over twitter like Sirs McKellen and Stewart?

    I can't say enough how sad Zach Gilford's career makes me. Actually, I've said it quite a lot, so I apologize for repeating myself.

    KYLE CHANDLER. Sorry. I just get excited when I see him because handsome.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Until further evidence is provided, I choose to believe that Connie Britton and Adrianne Palicki are, in addition to being vacation friends, totally also occasional sapphic friends, because, you know, try and not think about that now.

    Um. Bunk.

  • Michelle

    It's certainly possible, at least based upon my own best friendship!

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    What's the reality version of Slash Fiction?

  • chanohack

    Do tell!

  • Michelle

    We ARE contemplating a twitter and/or tumblr. I WILL KEEP YOU POSTED.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Can I subscribe to your presumably scandalous newsletter?

  • L.O.V.E.

    If its not too much to ask, can all future Pajiba posts involving Jurnee Smollett-Bell include her in this dress? Please and thank you.

  • Uriah_Creep

    He has risen.

    So had I, after seeing that picture.

  • She'd be employed all the time if she never took this dress off. Yikes! Every show handler would instantly be, urm, inspired to re-write a character just for her.

  • Samantha Klein

    Really? That's all you can muster for Scott Porter? You, Pajiba, who claim to adore Aubrey Plaza (with whom he recently starred in a movie that got generally good reviews, in addition to being extolled for its virtues as a female-driven sex comedy) and Go Fug Yourself (who DELIGHTFULLY recap Hart of Dixie each week)?? C'mon, people.

  • LaineyBobainey

    Scott Porter is just so very Scott Porter. Even his name is bland.

    He's so bland, Jo didn't even mention his arc on The Good Wife. And SHE LOVES The Good Wife!

  • the chaplain

    get behind Nashville tho

  • Nicole_OCTV

    The real secret surprise about Nashville is how fucking awesome Hayden P. is on it. She owns that show, and she's a delight - and this is coming from someone who only started watching it because I followed Mrs. Coach there, and dreaded Hayden's very involvement. The person you thought would be the weak link ends up stealing the show week after week - she's basically the Dax Shepard of that show.

  • Michelle

    OMG, YES. She IS the Dax Shepard of Nashville. Except Parenthood is 93% more heart-warming than Nashville.

  • KC

    Also Charles "Chip" Easton from "Whose Line" is pretty great on the show too. He's very authentic as a tortured country singer. Such a surprise for me, because he was always very goofy on "Whose Line".

  • Michelle

    He is pretty good. The handsome helps, as well.

  • Guest

    Nashville is terrible and I've embraced it.

  • Michelle

    Eh. Nashville just isn't doing it for me. And Connie Britton's character is pretty much the most boring one.

  • But not those pants.

  • Robert

    "though Fruitvale wasn’t the smash hit most people were expecting it to be"

    An indie film earning those raves and getting to a wide release and staying in theaters for months isn't beyond anyone's expectations for a microbudget drama about a controversial shooting? Really?

  • janeite

    Jess Merriweather aka Jurnee Smollett-Bell was horrible on True Blood. Really, really bad. Sorry.

  • melissa82

    I feel that is True Blood's fault though, not necessarily Jurnee's. Anything that touches the werewolves (and honestly, even Sam and the shifters) flies past Camp and lands in Groan-worthy.

  • So true. I practically squealed with delight when I found out she was going to be on Parenthood this season because I knew that she deserved so much better than True Blood. Of course, I also agree with Joanna that she deserves more than a small part on Parenthood but it's a huge step up.

  • Bothari

    I learned several things here that make me incredibly happy. My heart, it is warmed. Clear eyes, full hearts, Pajipeeps.

  • Irina

    Aimee Teegarden will be in the awful-looking CW show Star-Crossed. Bleah.
    Meanwhile Scott Porter is pretty delightful in Hart of Dixie (I know, I know, but it's such a cute little show, I can't even feel bad about watching it).

  • Miss Twiggley

    Hart of Dixie is a hilarious, underrated gem of a show. I love the alternate reality that is Bluebell.

  • Never feel bad about watching Hart of Dixie. It's worked its way into knowing exactly what kind of show it is and pulling that off practically perfectly.

  • Abby

    I was just going to say that while Hart of Dixie obviously isn't FNL, it does know how to use its alumni well!

  • melissa82

    And he gets to be delightful with Mayor Lavon Hayes, aka: Vince Howard's Papa!

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