At the league meetings on Monday, the NFL and HBO announced that the Detroit Lions will be featured on HBO’s “Hard Knocks” during the 2022 pre-season, which documents a behind-the-scenes look at training camp.
“We are excited about the opportunity to showcase the City of Detroit and the amazing culture we are building at the Lions,” Detroit Lions Team President and CEO Rod Wood said in a written statement. “HBO Sports and NFL Films are the best of the best and we know they will be excellent partners in sharing our story with football fans around the world.”
Because the Lions have not been featured on “Hard Knocks” in the past 10 years, don’t have a first-time head coach, and haven’t made the playoffs in the past two seasons, they could not decline being the featured team of the HBO documentary series. Two other teams—the Jets and Panthers—also met these criteria, but the league decided to go with Detroit over those two teams.
And it’s easy to see why. Head coach Dan Campbell alone should be able to provide enough content to fill an entire episode. It will also put a franchise that has spent far too long in the shadows right up in the public’s eye.
“As Hard Knocks enters its third decade inside NFL training camps, we are both thrilled and thankful for the opportunity to feature a historic franchise like the Lions,” said NFL Films Vice President and Senior Coordinating Producer, Ken Rodgers. “The city, the culture and the coaching staff in Detroit all have an exciting energy that will make the show must-watch television this summer.”
If you’ve never seen “Hard Knocks,” it documents the grueling five-week stretch of training camp, following the team’s top storylines. HBO cameras offer unprecedented behind-the-scenes access, as players fight for their jobs—giving fans a humanizing experience to one of the toughest months of the year for football players.
This is a fantastic opportunity for fans to see the behind-the-scenes working of an organization that has spent far too many years shrouded in secrecy.
“Hard Knocks” is scheduled to debut on Tuesday, August 9 at 10 p.m. ET with five, weekly hour-long episodes in the series. Mark your calendars.