In 1950s Philadelphia, Sheeran works as a delivery truck driver and starts to sell some of the contents of his shipments to local gangster Felix "Skinny Razor" DiTullio. After his company accuses him of theft, union lawyer Bill Bufalino gets him off after Sheeran refuses to name his customers to the judge. Bill introduces Sheeran to his cousin Russell Bufalino, head of the Northeastern Pennsylvania crime family. Sheeran begins to do jobs for Russell and members of the local South Philadelphia underworld, including "painting houses," a euphemism for murder. Soon, Russell introduces Sheeran to Jimmy Hoffa, head of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, who has financial ties with the Bufalino crime family and is struggling to deal with fellow rising Teamster Anthony "Tony Pro" Provenzano, as well as mounting pressure from the federal government. Hoffa becomes close with Sheeran and his family, especially his daughter Peggy, and Sheeran becomes Hoffa's chief bodyguard while on the road.