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League will pick a Hard Knocks team if no one offers


The NFL is still hoping teams volunteer to be the subject of Hard Knocks. But they’re now willing to volunteer someone if no one steps up.

According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, NFL owners passed a rule which would allow the league to pick a subject for the HBO/NFL Films reality show if no one offered, which will keep the popular show running.

Colleague Albert Breer added that teams with new coaches, or teams which made the playoffs two years in a row could decline.

Many franchises have made it clear they want no part of the behind-the-curtain treatment, but the league has now made it clear somebody’s doing it, whether they like it or not.

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72 Responses to “League will pick a Hard Knocks team if no one offers”
  1. ttommytom says: Oct 8, 2013 12:02 PM

    No way the Giants and Steelers will be in if they decline. Old money still means something…

  2. unkrautsalat says: Oct 8, 2013 12:03 PM

    I will subscribe to HBO for the rest of my life if they can somehow film the moment Robert Kraft has to tell Bill Belichick that his camp will be filmed for the world to see.

  3. robreg22 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:03 PM

    Good. Hard Knocks is great!

    Pick Buffalo!!!

  4. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: Oct 8, 2013 12:04 PM

    Amazing how much of a bully the NFL became after getting the players on the hook for 10 years in the last CBA.

    With that CBA in place (for so long), the players lost their last iota of leverage.

    The good news for fans is we avert labor strikes – but there are some clear downsides too.

  5. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: Oct 8, 2013 12:05 PM

    Belichick would blow a freaking gasket if the Patriots were selected. Ohhhh man.

  6. eaglesw00t says: Oct 8, 2013 12:08 PM

    Hopefully they pick the Eagles.

    As much as I love and follow them, for the last 15 years, I know absolutely 0 about what happens behind the scenes. They are so secretive its ridiculous.

    You obviously arent doing anything magical back there…

  7. kscogg says: Oct 8, 2013 12:08 PM

    Isn’t this thing close to running its course? It was fun and interesting at first but with all of the preseason/training camp coverage locally and from the mothership we get more than enough insight on our fav team.

  8. faulkn22 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:10 PM

    What does making the playoffs the past few years in a row have to do with not having to accept filming?

    I can understand new teams with new coaches, but I would think that the teams that made the playoffs the past few years would be the first teams to have to take the bid. They’re treating it like its a bad thing, so why make bad teams have to endure something bad?

    Plus, I’m sure people are more interested in watching how good teams prepare more than how bad teams prepare. Just my opinion.

  9. jwcarlson says: Oct 8, 2013 12:12 PM

    2014 – Jags.

  10. h3min1230 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:12 PM

    Kind of like my 4th grade teacher, Mrs. Swanowski. No one volunteered to read a chapter out of Shakespear so i got called on.

  11. clownsfan says: Oct 8, 2013 12:13 PM

    Might I suggest the 2014 Cleveland Browns……

  12. Phil says: Oct 8, 2013 12:15 PM

    It’ll be the Raiders.


  13. whoknowsnothing says: Oct 8, 2013 12:15 PM

    I pick the Chiefs or the Steelers, both teams would be interesting given what their current records is.

  14. radrntn says: Oct 8, 2013 12:15 PM

    raiders would be great for HBO, and the nfl… maybe it time for raiders to open up a little bit to the media….Time would be right, they have draft picks, and with flynn gone they have about 70 million in cap space to go shopping. Plus they can cut Brisiel and save another 5 million.

  15. steelerben says: Oct 8, 2013 12:16 PM

    At what point does growing the brand start to interfere with the on field product? Silly new uniforms from Nike, an hour of commercials in a two hour game, and games held abroad are annoying, but don’t have impact on competitive advantage. Forcing a team to allow their camps to be filmed for entertainment purposes? Cameras in the locker rooms? These are starting to cross the line.

  16. gogatorsjohn says: Oct 8, 2013 12:16 PM

    Please the Bucs! They would have been the best one ever this past year.

  17. broncos97 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:20 PM

    Please I think the league gets enough exsposure now why keep on with this plus they change the pro bowl uniform and they look like crap not that they were much to look at any way but they are trending towards the arena league look

  18. gadgetdawg says: Oct 8, 2013 12:21 PM

    I know I wouldn’t want the cameras anywhere near any team I gave a dang about. “Hard Knocks” is reality tv at its worst. Everyone associated with the team involved are demoted from human to little, editable entities.

    I cannot imagine how anyone can argue that this doesn’t affect a team involved in a majorly bad way regardless of what some folks say.

    I like the NFL but please stop turning teams into ‘Honey Boo Boo’ for a little extra pocket cash.

  19. barneyrumble says: Oct 8, 2013 12:23 PM

    Love the series, glad it will continue but forcing a team into doing it may not be the best approach.

  20. detectivejimmymcnulty says: Oct 8, 2013 12:28 PM

    I love Hardknocks but I don’t understand why the owners would agree to allow the league to pick a team. Imagine if they pick the Patriots. B.B. would be pissed.

  21. mshawn75 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:29 PM

    In other words.. whichever team is the “media darling”, or Dallas every year.

  22. kahnsbushymustache says: Oct 8, 2013 12:42 PM

    2014 Hard Knocks should be about how painful it is to be a Jaguars fan in 2013…

  23. pookienjookie says: Oct 8, 2013 12:44 PM

    Apparently they want teams that aren’t popular nationwide, so I doubt Steelers or Giants unless they apply, or Redskins and Cowboys, they want like Jacksonville or Arizona.

  24. smokingconch says: Oct 8, 2013 12:44 PM

    “What does making the playoffs the past few years in a row have to do with not having to accept filming?”

    My guess is that if they brought in HBO to a team that is always a contender and suddenly they weren’t, no coach would cooperate with them ever again. They want to make sure there’s another excuse should the Hard Knocks teams always tend to suck.

  25. godofwine330 says: Oct 8, 2013 12:48 PM

    In the military that is called, “Voluntold.” Jacked up, IMO. I know the fans are rabid for football, but to force a team to do it is wrong. I have missed it the past 3 years, though I enjoyed the 2001 Ravens. Coaches don’t like it because it is invasinve AND doesn’t allow them to hide players and slip them thru to the practice squad. Now, if someone shines in camp you have to find a way to keep them on the 53 because if you cut him last cuts – scoop.

  26. Derwin Worrell says: Oct 8, 2013 12:49 PM

    Another stupid move by the NFL. Making an organization having to be a part of a show is ridiculous. The NFL only cares about money. Their greed never ends. I hope my Seahawks never have to deal with that distraction. Football players want to play football, not be a part of some reality show.

  27. azarkhan says: Oct 8, 2013 12:50 PM

    Never watched it and never will. It smells too much like reality TV.

  28. sharkt says: Oct 8, 2013 12:54 PM

    The Lions would be great! Oh wait, teams with new coaching staffs are exempt…

  29. marcinhouston says: Oct 8, 2013 12:56 PM

    Teams that win their division should be able to decline. The reason the Saints didn’t make the playoff two years in a row was Roger Goodell manufactured distractions, and now Goodell has the ability to manufacture a new distraction? I just don’t trust the league, the Saints are too easy a target for this given that they are a top team this year, with top stars, who missed the playoffs last year due to distractions, and who Goodell has a personal vendetta against and owes no favors to.

  30. souldogdave says: Oct 8, 2013 12:57 PM

    Big mistake in the CBA, that show is BS and a distraction.

  31. klutch14u says: Oct 8, 2013 1:00 PM

    Make it easy. If it’s considered a distraction AT ALL make it so the winner of the Super Bowl the year before does it. It’d generate the most interest being they were the SB winner and it’d automatically be selected who it was going to be the next year. No drama

  32. gallyhatch says: Oct 8, 2013 1:03 PM

    Belicheck would definitely hit the roof, but any one thinking this is going to happen overlooked something in the article:

    “Colleague Albert Breer added that teams with new coaches, or teams which made the playoffs two years in a row could decline.”

    This won’t happen to the Pats, sorry folks.

  33. footballchic777 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:05 PM

    Oh yeah, bring on the Patriots! But we all know that is a dream, because the NFL would never anger Kraft.

  34. flannlv says: Oct 8, 2013 1:06 PM

    Why would the rule be a team could decline if they have a new coach (which I understand), but they can also decline if they’ve made the playoffs the last two years?

    Maybe that’s a typo, bc if not then NE has their built in excuse. Shouldn’t it be if they haven’t made the playoffs the last two years they can decline?

  35. klutch14u says: Oct 8, 2013 1:06 PM

    To expand on my own idea a bit, if this were the case and it was the winner of the SB the prior year they could expand the series a few episodes and cover some of the offseason stuff like free agency and the draft, etc.

  36. thebirdofprey2 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:08 PM

    I have said this before NFL Films and HBO do a great job with Hard Knocks. People can say its an invasion of their team but what was revealed by the Bengals this year? There is nothing X’s and O’s where teams are getting some edge on teams that chooses to be filmed.

    Football is entertainment and fans should all be happy for this announcement. You get to see human element of an NFL team from an owner down to guy fighting to make even the practice squad.

  37. jasonsgotafever says: Oct 8, 2013 1:09 PM

    I would say it would be interesting to see the Texans, but they’ll have a new coach by then and they wont apply.

  38. pafinfan72 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:10 PM

    It will be Dallas year after year after year….Jerry loves to see himself on TV….

  39. whatjusthapped says: Oct 8, 2013 1:14 PM

    The Vikings will always be qualified if the exception is to make the playoffs two years in a row.

  40. Go-Hawks! says: Oct 8, 2013 1:17 PM

    Ha! If the Seahawks are told to do the show then the show will have a lot of die-hard fans… All located in Washington State.

    Everybody hates the Seahawks. I know that because I read the comments at PFT.

    Oh, that’s right… Teams that make the playoff 2 years in a row can decline. I guess my Seahawks won’t be doing the show.

  41. scoops1 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:17 PM

    can they make the announcement on the day 2 of the NFL draft??

  42. wideright91 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:20 PM

    PATRIOTS! no brainer. They owe the league one anyway, let’s videotape them.

  43. wideright91 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:21 PM

    PATRIOTS! no brainer. they owe the league one, anyway. Let’s videotape them.

  44. keltictim says: Oct 8, 2013 1:26 PM

    I believe they aren’t allowed to film in bathrooms so if the patriots are picked expect to see urinals installed in every single room of the facility.

  45. muskyhunter2542 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:30 PM

    X-Rated version in Minnesota.
    Title it The Love Boat!!!

  46. mattseas says: Oct 8, 2013 1:32 PM

    SURPRISE! The NFL does care about money! Who knew?

  47. rpiotr01 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:36 PM

    The Packers/Giants/Steelers/Pats will die on that hill. No way.

  48. dretwann says: Oct 8, 2013 1:51 PM

    This is stupid as is the show.

  49. omegalh says: Oct 8, 2013 1:55 PM

    Why don’t they HARD KNOCKS the NFL head office? Goodell and his lackeys would be interesting to watch as they enforce their will upon the people.

  50. stiffarm37 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:58 PM

    This is some bull. The NFL is messing with its product way too much. Thursday night football is awful, and now they’re gonna force a team to do a TV show during their training camp. I guess since teams are only allowed to have like 8 full pads practices the whole offseason they should have more time to film the show, but it’s not making the football any better.

  51. m056432 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:07 PM

    It’s bound to happen where no one wants to do the show, the NFL should take it one step further and tie hosting the show to a specific outcome that way no one can complain – ie. the loser of the superbowl, or say, whoever has the 10th pick in the draft. To prevent the same team hosting 2 years in a row/new coach/etc, then default to whoever lost to the losing superbowl team in the AFC/NFC championship or draft pick 9… you catch my point. This isn’t rocket science and instead of directing a team based on Roger’s arbitrary preference, make it mandatory based on some fixed outcome

  52. antalicus says: Oct 8, 2013 2:11 PM

    Whichever team gets Manziel in the draft…

  53. raymondtx says: Oct 8, 2013 2:11 PM

    They should put the pats on there so we can catch them cheating. Hidden cameras and all.

  54. 727bucsfan says: Oct 8, 2013 2:17 PM

    They can save a bunch of time and production costs by picking the Bucs. Schiano already has all the footage of the team.

    Only caveat, is that Schiano will have to be named producer, have final cut, and be advised hourly of the craft services Noodle Bar details.

    So freakin sad to be a Bucs fan right now.

  55. jdubkc says: Oct 8, 2013 2:17 PM

    Hard Knocks is a curse… that being said, Chiefs already did it.

  56. ivanpavlov0000 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:25 PM

    What about a Hard Knocks CFL edition? Which team is coached by the Bob and Doug McKenzie?

  57. fakegregbrinda says: Oct 8, 2013 2:32 PM

    ialwayswantedtobeabanker says:
    Oct 8, 2013 12:04 PM
    Amazing how much of a bully the NFL became after getting the players on the hook for 10 years in the last CBA.

    With that CBA in place (for so long), the players lost their last iota of leverage.

    The good news for fans is we avert labor strikes – but there are some clear downsides too.
    Yeah, the league’s decision to make a front office and coaching staff be on Hard Knocks against their will sure is a huge blow to player leverage…

    I can see how this story relates to the CBA…

    The continuation of Hard Knocks is clearly—CLEARLY—a negative consequence of the labor agreement, one that us fans will just have to tolerate…

    …No, no, and no. Just no. Just stop. No.

  58. realitypolice says: Oct 8, 2013 2:39 PM

    unkrautsalat says:
    Oct 8, 2013 12:03 PM
    I will subscribe to HBO for the rest of my life if they can somehow film the moment Robert Kraft has to tell Bill Belichick that his camp will be filmed for the world to see.

    Guess you missed the part where it said that teams that made the playoffs two years in a row had the right to decline.

  59. thestrategyexpert says: Oct 8, 2013 2:43 PM

    It’s about time. Now they just need a rule that every team needs to be open to the cameras in the offseason. Scary proposition for all the genius football minds that have so much confidence in themselves that they fear losing their job when people can get a close look at what they are doing. It’s time to separate the chumps from the champs and showcase the best professional competitors in a more intimate setting. As well as to force accountability with added pressure for the posers.

  60. darkneptune73 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:49 PM

    On one hand, Czar Goodell acting like a dictator as usual. On the other, they need to force the Patriots to participate for the hilarity that ensues.

  61. hysto1 says: Oct 8, 2013 3:09 PM

    The team with the worst record has to be on hard knocks the next season. At the end of the season, fans complain that teams “lose on purpose” to get a higher draft position. The penalty for being the worst team, even with a new coach, is to be the team under the microscope.

    The only other fair outcomes would be a team picking in the top 5 (as teams that try to tank the games), or to just put all 32 teams into a rotation for decades to come.

  62. laxcoach37 says: Oct 8, 2013 3:32 PM

    Personally, I love the show no matter what Team is on and clearly most of you all do as well. In fact, I clearly remember all the boos and negative comments last year about my Dolphins. Well, guess what? You are all anonymous liars because it was the Series’ all time ratings leader. Go figure. I am not saying you folks are secret Miami fans, but at the time everyone ” loved the Trainwreck” and that sells. Case Closed.

  63. silvernblak says: Oct 8, 2013 3:32 PM

    Forcing teams to keep NFL money coming in? What next? 3 games in London? The NFL is a joke! First hitting a defenseless receiver and the hits just keep coming. Morons!

  64. silvernblak says: Oct 8, 2013 3:36 PM

    This is the Leagues version of spy gate for a bounty!

  65. whodeybacker says: Oct 8, 2013 4:01 PM

    I vote for the Bengals again. Each year they do it, they go to the playoffs.

  66. thinkarez says: Oct 8, 2013 4:07 PM

    really hope it’s the patriots….and I’m a Bengals fan that would just be too funny!

  67. cliverush says: Oct 8, 2013 4:36 PM

    Scene -Foxboro, Ma. As the HBO Hard Knocks film crew pulls into the Gillette Stadium parking lot a security guard directs them to their facilities. Pointing to a Porti-Potty he states, “there is your office and bathroom and over by the woods on the outskirts of the property is a 10′ by 10′ picnic tent for your equipment. Coach Belichick has graciously allowed you 30 sec. of access to the teams locker room once a week. Enjoy!

  68. rcali says: Oct 8, 2013 5:04 PM

    Grumpy Belicheat would be awesome. Though we all know he secretly loves his well placed cameras!

  69. cman73 says: Oct 8, 2013 5:17 PM

    “teams with new coaches, or teams which made the playoffs two years in a row could decline.”

    The entire NFL is basically comprised of teams with new coaches or teams that have made the playoffs two years in a row.

  70. dan46778 says: Oct 8, 2013 5:20 PM

    The patriots will have all of their meetings way behind the scenes n tell the film crews the wrong times etc. n if the film crews are there it would the awkward Silence

  71. 2cmorgan says: Oct 8, 2013 5:47 PM

    Lets see, a owner pays 100’s of millions of dollars to own a pro football team. Now just because the NFL makes money from HBO for they show if no team volunteers to be on it the NFL will pick a team for the show. Are we sure the government is not running the NFL?

  72. peehergriphon says: Oct 8, 2013 8:49 PM

    NFL bullies… It will be Raiders / Jags / Bills. NFL wont touch influential team.

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