NFL 'Hard Knocks' to require team participation (with exceptions)

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL has agreed to do 'Hard Knocks' every year, and will compel teams to participate if there are no volunteers.

The NFL and HBO have reached an agreement that will keep Hard Knocks on the air every year. At a league owners meeting on Tuesday, the league passed a proposal to require teams to do the show if no volunteers step up that year. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport tweeted the relevant details:

Hard Knocks debuted in 2001 and has run eight seasons since then, chronicling one team's entire training camp. It took a hiatus from 2003-06 and did not air in 2011 due to the NFL lockout. The teams featured on the show so far are the Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens, Kansas City Chiefs, Cincinnati Bengals, New York Jets and Miami Dolphins.

The show is a consistent ratings hit for HBO due to its unprecedented access inside the NFL locker room, but teams have backed away from the show for that very reason. HBO almost didn't have a team to cover for the 2013 season due to multiple teams declining the invitation. The Bengals agreed to do it at the last minute, becoming only the second team to appear on the show twice.

With the new agreement in place, the NFL and HBO now ensured that they will have a team to cover every year for the foreseeable future, even if they have to twist someone's arm to do so.

More from SB Nation NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Chiefs and Colts climbing

Fumblr: Matt Schaub hits rock bottom

Bois: The Quarterback Internet Hate Index

The NFL's new Pro Bowl uniforms look familiar

Lions' Raiola harassed UW marching band, school official tells SB Nation

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,


You must be a member of to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at You should read them.


You must be a member of to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.