There’s a belief that last year’s season of HBO’s “Hard Knocks” was the best one yet. And there’s also a good chance that, this year, the show won’t have an opportunity to air (something about a labor mess).
This could be sort of a good thing. After all, who wants to follow Rex Ryan, Antonio Cromartie and the crazy-ass Jets? There’s already a faction of teams that will never participate in a reality show during training camp, and it seems like that list is growing.
The Buccaneers, Lions, Falcons and Broncos have already turned down invitations or publicly stated that they aren’t interested, and the Jets are not going to partake in the wildness two summers in a row.
Maybe a year off is what the show needs. If training camps are delayed or reduced in length and HBO can’t find an enticing team, they might be able to return with added excitement in 2012.
Still, football fans worldwide should be hoping for the return of the program sooner than later. Setting aside the aforementioned “thanks but no thanks” squads, let’s take a look at the teams GLS would be thrilled to see accept an invitation to be featured on the show.
But before we give you our top five, we should toss a few franchises out the window. There’s no chance that Bill Belichick would let the Patriots take part, even less of a chance that Tom Coughlin would allow his Giants to be involved and I can guarantee you that the Colts and Steelers wouldn’t touch this thing with a 10-foot pole.
If we’re lucky, one of these teams won’t feel the same way…
1. Green Bay Packers: This one’s obvious — they just won the Super Bowl. But I’m guessing it’s highly unlikely they accept an invitation.
2. Baltimore Ravens: They were the first team ever featured on Hard Knocks, way back when Ray Lewis was 26 years old and the team was coming off its Super Bowl XXXV victory. It’d be awesome to check in on them a decade later, with Lewis surrounded by a young and exciting group.
3. Philadelphia Eagles: Michael Vick and DeSean Jackson would bring every storyline and sound bite necessary. Throw in the possibility of Plaxico Burress and Nnamdi Asomugha arriving as free agents and the Eagles would be very entertaining.
4. Oakland Raiders: They’re notoriously private, which would make this extremely appealing. That said, I think Al Davis would only oblige if the access was significantly less open than in past seasons. We’d end up getting Hard Knocks with some heavy PR spin.
5. Dallas Cowboys: There’s just something about this team that intrigues fans. They’re the only team that has appeared on the show twice, so why not make it a trifecta? “America’s Team” would once again bring in killer ratings, regardless of how entertaining the players are. After last year’s flop, a look inside 2011 training camp would be quite interesting.