Over the last few weeks the producers of HBO’s original series “Hard Knocks” have surely had more than their share of sleepless nights. The problem has been they cannot find an NFL team to follow as more teams have decided against an appearance than there are teams willing to take on the cameras.
So far the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Denver Broncos, and Detriot Lions have officially said “thanks, but no thanks” when approached with the opportunity.
Other teams names have been thrown into consideration — the Oakland Raiders, Green Bay Packers and Washington Redskins — among others. But it’s all just speculation at this point and there have been no confirmed reports that HBO has reached out to any of these teams.
Recently talk began to heat up about the Atlanta Falcons participation after GM Thomas Dimitroff confirmed during a radio interview that the franchise may be interested in the show, this after turning them down two seasons ago.
Head coach Mike Smith came out a few days later and seemed to withdraw Dimitroff’s statement, saying they had met and talked about participation, but in the end decided unanimously that it would not be in the best interest of the Falcons.
At this point HBO has to be considering just packing it in and not doing the show at it all this year. After all “Hard Knocks” follows a teams off-season preparation for the regular season. It seems more and more likely that a preseason will not exist this year due to the lockout.
While calling it quits seems like a viable option, I am willing to bet the producers see the show covering the NFL from a different point of view — the view point of seeing the lockout from the inside out — which could make it a huge success as fans want to know what the players are going through.
That could lead “Hard Knocks” right to the Saints doorstep. They were already said to have been in consideration from the start, and here are the reasons why.