He lost his family to gambling
then he gambled to win them back
Jake Long, a stubborn former quarterback for the Texas Longhorns who was injured in his last game against Auburn, is now living in Dallas in a less than luxury apartment with his wife Jenny and his 8 month old daughter, Sophie. Still reticent about his injury and his lost chances of any kind of NFL career, he has trouble resigning himself to his lifeless, risk averse job at a local insurance company where he works as a telemarketer—a job was given to him by Jenny’s Aunt—the head of Human Resources Department.
Competitive and still looking for the quick strike like he did in college, Jake has squandered their savings on get-rich-quick schemes and power ball tickets as he continues to live in the past, until he discovers the poker game Texas Hold’em from a friend at work. After Jake dives into the game head first, Jenny discovers that he has squandered the rest of their credit card “credit” on his gambling, then leaves him taking Sophie with her.
Without his family and without any hope of succeeding at poker on his own, he is finally able to get ahold of the former world’s poker champion Buddy Richardson, hoping that success will eventually win back his wife and child. The crotchety old veteran reluctantly takes Jake under his tutelage only because he used to bet on Jake’s football games in college. But over time, their friendship grows and Buddy begins to teach Jake lesson about life as it correlates to the famous card game including the concept of commitment by going ‘all in’.
When news of a new Texas Hold’em tournament in Las Vegas is announced, Buddy enrolls him for his final exam. As Jake—now known as the Pink Rose of Texas—works his way up the ladder, Buddy discovers the tournament is not all it appears to be and warns Jake about its pitfalls. But Jake—eager to exact revenge on the bad hand that has been dealt to him since his football injury and his lost opportunity in the NFL—refuses to listen. During the final game of the tournament, however, Jake must choose between his family or a life of glamour in the Las Vegas fast lane.