In past years, plenty of teams opted against inviting NFL Films for the Hard Knocks series. The fear was/is that the one hour per week of footage that makes it onto television — and the countless other hours that don’t — could end up being used against the subject of the series.
Last year, the Bengals welcomed the presence of the cameras, and they parlayed the appearance into a playoff berth.
Now, a team that previously said “thanks” and “no thanks” to NFL Films wants in. According to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, Texans owner Bob McNair is lobbying for the assignment. Per McClain, the Texans had a crack at the gig in 2009, but they turned it down.
McClain also points out that “there’s talk” the Jets will be the ultimate selection. And that makes us wonder whether Monday’s gasket-blowing from owner Woody Johnson regarding The Coin Flip was aimed at squeezing the league into picking the Jets. It also makes us wonder whether the decision to go public with the spat will do more harm than good in that regard.
Meanwhile, keep in mind that the late Vince Lombardi relished the presence of NFL Films crews at practice, believing that the cameras prompted the players to work harder. In fact, Lombardi would tell NFL Films president Steve Sabol to have his staff pretend to use the cameras, even if they contained no film.
Sabol’s reward for creating contrived motivation for Lombardi’s players? A photo from the coach with this classic inscription: “To Steve, A Schmuck if ever I saw one, Vince.”