In the penultimate episode of “Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Detroit Lions,” we saw a lot of things we’ve been waiting for the show to get around to showing. We got to see a behind-the-scene look at Detroit’s coachless practice, finally got some screen time for offensive coordinator Ben Johnson, and even Jared Goff worked his way into the storyline—finally.
Of course, it’s still the Dan Campbell show, and the Lions coach did not disappoint yet again with some memorable quotes throughout the episode.
But he wasn’t the only one that provided a can’t-forget moment. Here are the top 14 quotes from episode 4 of “Hard Knocks.”
“I had three ‘what the fucks’ and two ‘bullshits’ in the first drive alone. Like, I don’t know what he was doing. It was bullshit, man.” — Dan Campbell
This was a fascinating scene where Lions general manager Brad Holmes held a collaborative meeting—between coaches, front office scouts and coordinators—to reset the depth chart and detail where players currently stand. Campbell is describing the play of someone—presumably from the Colts game—but the identity of that player is never revealed.
“It’s completely on y’all there. But make sure this ain’t a shit show, fellas.” — LB coach Kelvin Sheppard
As expected, we got the behind-the-scenes look at Detroit’s coachless practice from last week. The best part was just watching some players’ facial reaction to Campbell telling the team.
“Who needs fucking coaches, you know? [To David Blough] Sorry for swearing. They’re sitting up there in their air conditioning. What’s that quote? ‘The man in the arena...’”
Hey, we finally got some Jared Goff on “Hard Knocks” 3.0 for him! And he and David Blough are pulling off quotes from Theodore Roosevelt! He’s come a long ways since his sun-rising days.
“You’re on fire right now, tell you what, man. Fuck. You and him (DJ Chark), you and (Josh) Reynolds, you and (Amon-Ra) Saint (Brown). I’m telling you, man, I feel... fuck.” — Campbell
Dan Campbell is feeling some Jared Goff right now and he can’t even put into words how optimistic he’s feeling about his starting quarterback.
“They did exactly what they wanted to do. They played us like fucking puppets.” — Defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn
We’ve really only seen Glenn in front of the podium during press conferences or taking shit from Duce Staley, but this was a strong scene of him laying into the defense after getting torched by the Lions offense in practice.
“I wouldn’t cut him. He’s everything we represent.” — offensive assistant John Morton
Craig Reynolds was heavily featured in this episode again, and there was a great scene where Campbell asked the offensive coaching room if they would be “sick to our stomachs” if they cut Reynolds. Morton was the first one to step up for Reynolds in the room and gave insight into why they like him. Obviously, Morton’s word carried a lot of weight as we know now that Reynolds made the initial 53-man roster. Just be careful with the Icy Hot, Craig.
“You’ve got to take it slow with guys from Minnesota sometimes.” — OL coach Hank Fraley
Fraley with a dig on Frank Ragnow after the jugular/juggler pun went over his head. Four out of five dads approve of that joke, Obinna Eze.
“Where’s Ben? He’s a genius. Ben! Ben, you’re a genius!” — Amon-Ra St. Brown
Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson had been MIA in the first three episodes of “Hard Knocks,” but he finally got some face time this week. Faced with a challenge from an angry Aaron Glenn, Johnson provided a nice game plan during a heated practice that earned the respect of his star wide receiver.
“Don’t get stiff-armed or you’re going to get embarrassed.” — Gabriel Rodriguez, brother of Malcolm Rodriguez
We got to meet Malcolm Rodriguez’s family during a cute little scene in a Pittsburgh hotel. Just watching Gabriel and Malcolm fawn over Steelers running back Najee Harris is a good reminder of just how young these kids are. Of course, Gabriel had to get a little jab in on his older brother.
“I’ve got to say hi to my favorite coach of all time. How are you doing? We need more people like you in the league.” — NFL line judge Jeff Bergman to Dan Campbell
WE NEED JEFF BERGMAN ON ALL LIONS GAMES THIS YEAR. WE FINALLY HAVE AN OFFICIAL IN OUR CORNER. Bergman was the same official who knighted Chase Lucas with the onside kick recovery ball. I... like an NFL ref now?
“This is exactly why I fucks with you. That’s a fucking hell of a job. You understand me? Yeah, you gotta make (the tackle), but you brought your ass on, and you helped that shit happen. You understand me? You just do that.” — Glenn to Rodriguez
Cool teaching moment on this play:
Beautiful run fits here by the Lions... and it starts with the downhill trigger from Malcolm Rodriguez@malcolmlrod hits EVERYTHING with his face. Eyes up and snapping the hips. Textbook. pic.twitter.com/ifV4Ie1lWh— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) August 29, 2022
“I think we’ve got a defense, gentlemen.” — Campbell
Okay, I got chills. Please let this be true.
“Listen, all you can do is give him a chance to make a play, and either they do or they don’t. At least we know now.” — Campbell
We’re getting towards the end of “Hard Knocks,” which is always the most heartbreaking part of the series. Every season, we have to watch as some of the roster bubble guys that get featured on this show eventually get cut.
After Kalil Pimpleton’s dropped touchdown pass, it sounds like Campbell essentially made up his mind about the undrafted rookie wide receiver. It sounds like Pimpleton knew it, too, as he walked off the field telling his teammate, Devin Funchess, who was trying to console him, “That shit ain’t good, brah.”
“This is the hard, cold truth. We’re sitting at 80 and we’ve gotta get to 53, and it’s a bitch, man. It is the worst part of this fucking job. The blood, the sweat, the tears, the devotion, everything that you’ve put into it, you’ve got my respect. You’ve got all of my respect. I’d do anything I could for you, man, and I wish I could fucking keep you. We all do, but it’s just not how it works. But we appreciate the hell out of you because you gave us your best.” — Campbell
Campbell’s solemn speech at the end of the Steelers game was tough to listen to, especially now that we’re on the other side of that 53-man cutdown date. For months, so many of these players devoted their time, body, and energy to this team only to see their dream deferred. We can’t ever lose sight of that, no matter how much money these guys are making.