Background and college
Born November 15, 1979 in Bismarck, North Dakota, Bollinger played quarterback for Central High School in Grand Forks, North Dakota. He played in every game while attending the school and passed for 40 touchdowns and ran for 19 more. He was a four-year starting quarterback for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, WI. In 2000, Bollinger, a redshirt freshman starter, assisted the Badgers in their second straight Rose Bowl victory along with teammate and Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne. The following year, Bollinger played in the Sun Bowl and defeated the UCLA Bruins. During his third year, the Badgers could not match the success of the two previous seasons as they posted a 5-7 overall record and did not earn a bowl game berth. Bollinger ended his collegiate career with an overtime victory over the Colorado Buffaloes in the Alamo Bowl. Bollinger finished with a 30-12 record as a starter at UW, a 3-0 bowl game record, and the school's rushing record for quarterbacks with 1,767 yards and 26 touchdowns. He was also drafted twice by the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team, both drafted in the 50th round.
As a Jet2003 NFL Draft. In 2003, Bollinger sat on the bench for the entire year while Vinny Testaverde and Chad Pennington led the team as quarterbacks. His idle NFL career ended in 2004, when he replaced an injured Quincy Carter to take his first snap in an NFL game against Arizona. Bollinger completed 5 of 9 passes for 60 yards.
Bollinger did not play again until 2005, when first and second-string quarterbacks Chad Pennington and Jay Fiedler were both injured in a game against Jacksonville. This unfortunate series of events kickstarted Bollinger's career as the quarterback for the Jets. After the incident, Jets head coach Herman Edwards tried to bring experience at the QB position to the team by signing veteran quarterback Vinny Testaverde. The 41-year-old Testaverde failed to perform up to expectations and was benched for Bollinger. Bollinger kept improving with experience and finished the season strong as the starter with a 2-7 record. Brooks also won honors as the Jets Most Valuable Player for the month of December, including his first 300+ yard passing game versus Miami on December 18th 2005.
After the Jets
Bollinger was traded to the Minnesota Vikings in 2006 for defensive tackle C.J. Mosley and a draft pick where he was reunited with new head coach Brad Childress, his Offensive Coordinator in college. After a game against the Chicago Bears in which Vikings starting QB Brad Johnson threw 4 INTs, Bollinger came in and replaced him. He threw for 70 yards (with seven completions on nine attempts), before he was injured and replaced by rookie Tarvaris Jackson. The injury kept him sidelined through most of his 2006 season. In 2007, Bollinger replaced Jackson in the game with the San Diego Chargers, in which Adrian Peterson rushed for an NFL record 296 yards. 'I felt like I was back at Wisconsin' said Bollinger. In 2008, the Vikings drafted USC quarterback John David Booty in the fifth round of the 2008 NFL Draft. This meant that Bollinger would be fighting for a third string spot with Booty behind Tarvaris Jackson and veteran Gus Frerotte. After a disappointing preseason, Bollinger lost the third-string spot and was released by the Vikings on August 30th 2008.
On September 8, 2008, Bollinger was signed by the Dallas Cowboys. He made his first appearance for the Cowboys in the second half against the New York Giants, where he threw an interception in his first pass play.He subsequently threw his first NFL touchdown as a Cowboy, to Terrell Owens.
Stats as a Jet
During Bollinger's time with the Jets, he was a frequent poster on Jets message boards, under the username Fred Jetstone, continually trying to persuade Jets fans he was The Second Coming.