The Chicago Bears could be the favorite for HBO Hard Knocks this season
The Chicago Bears are a team with a lot of story lines going into this offseason, circling around the quarterback position. The team has a big decision to make on whether or not to keep Justin Fields or move forward with Caleb Williams.
Holding the No. 1 overall pick means Chicago can control the offseason with their decision. And the intrigue surrounding the Bears will likely lead into the Summer and the regular season which means a lot of eyes will be on them. That could include them being featured on HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’ series.
The Bears have never been featured on the show but for the 2024 version, they are likely the favorites to be on it. Per Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk, the Bears are one of three teams that can be forced into doing HBO Hard Knocks next season.
Most NFL teams don’t want to appear on HBO Hard Knocks, the annual training camp documentary partnership between HBO and NFL Films. But the league sees Hard Knocks as a valuable marketing tool, so when no team volunteers, a team is forced to do it. And this year, the Bears, Broncos and Saints are the three teams that won’t have the option of saying no.
Those are the only three teams that meet the following criteria: They don’t have a first-year head coach, they didn’t make the playoffs in either of the last two years, and they haven’t appeared on Hard Knocks in the last 10 years.
There is a criteria where teams can avoid doing it including having a first year head coach, teams that have made the playoffs at least once in the last two years and teams that have done the show in the last 10 years including the in-season version which debuted three years ago.
The Bears don’t fall into that criteria along with Denver and New Orleans.
The Chicago Bears aren’t fans of HBO Hard Knocks
If you’ve followed the Bears, you know that the team likes to keep things a secret by limiting reporting at training camp from beat writers. They also don’t like the cameras on them at Halas Hall, which has been clear multiple times.
Last season, when the Bears were rumored to be one of the teams HBO wanted behind the favorite and eventual choice, the Jets, chairman George McCaskey made it clear there was no interest. McCaskey met with Bears reporters last Spring in Phoenix at the annual NFL owner’s meeting and told Kevin Fishbain:
“We feel there are a number of teams that have compelling stories to tell on ‘HBO Hard Knocks,’” McCaskey said, per The Athletic. When asked if the Bears were part of those teams? “Thirty-one others,” he said.
The Bears will be the favorites for HBO Hard Knocks
So what will the Bears do this year? Of those three teams, it’s clear that the Bears are going to be the favorite to be on HBO’s Hard Knocks. Even if they stick with Justin Fields as quarterback, they have a few intriguing story lines.
But it feels like it’s a lock if they do draft Caleb Williams at No. 1. The Bears could potentially have a franchise quarterback and a roster that feels ready to make a run at the playoffs. They would be an intriguing option especially in a big market like the city of Chicago.
Maybe we will finally get the chance to get a look inside Halas Hall via HBO Hard Knocks and get a glimpse of how the coaching staff really runs things. And that would be awesome to see for fans as this team appears ready to break out and be a contender.
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