When you think about it, it's actually pretty hard to relate to the core plot of the movie -- Rod Tidwell is greedy, and, pushed by his greedy wife, demands a contract worth in the $10s of millions a year rather than the less than $10 million a year 'insulting' contract on the table.
He is not a fan favorite, others in the locker room don't particularly like him, and to get the deal he wants he keeps playing - knowing that if he gets injured then it's all over for him.
Meanwhile, Jerry doesn't look too hard for new clients and the few he does chase are stolen by Jay Mohr's rival agent. Still, with 15% of the Rod Tidwell contract set to roll in, life's not too bad for Tom - even though he is near-suicidal in the movie.
Anyway. Things aren't working for Jerry. He is married to Dorothy for convenience and because he really bonded with little Ray. They take a break as things aren't working and the business isn't doing so well.
Rod Tidwell knows he is difficult. Scared that he won't be able to support his family, he accepts roles in adverts, even though he finds them degrading. Finally he asks for Jerry's advice, and says he will 'dance' on the field and play to the crowd if that is what it will take to win the contract he needs.
Jerry returns to Dorothy's house while she is hosting a party for divorced women. He enters with a rousing speech, and she gives him the "you had me at 'hello'" line. They're back together again.
Soon enough, it's the big game. Rod reaches out for a catch to score a touchdown but is hit hard and is not moving on the field. The crowd are silent, his watching family fear the worst.
After a dramatic pause he gets to his feet -- and starts dancing. The crowd go wild.
After the game, all the press want to interview him for the first time - and he thanks the best agent he knows - Jerry Maguire. They hug as genuine friends. Jay Mohr is in the background with the star quarterback that turned down Jerry before, who realises he made the wrong decision and wants a relationship as close as those guys.
In a big, live, tv interview Rod is told the new terms for his contract from the Cardinals - giving him the money he wants. He swore he wouldn't cry, but the floodgates open up. Jerry's pretty happy too.