Hard Knocks is just an incredible show. The level of access that HBO’s cameras get is absolutely nuts. They showed Chad Johnson getting cut last night, and as they were doing it, I’m thinking “They’re not really going to let HBO’s cameras be in the room while they cut him, are they?” But they did. The beginning of the show where Joe Philbin talks about his son dying was some “real” TV. Also, plenty of comedy with the haircut they gave one of the rookies. It really has it all. I mean… you don’t even have to be a football fan to watch this show, but if you are, it is must see TV. However, I would never want Hard Knocks to follow my team around, for two reasons. One, and I’ll note here that my team happens to be the Eagles, there’s no doubt those cameras are a distraction. I can’t see how they’re not. When the coaching staff is sitting around the table and they’re openly laughing at one of their receivers, calling him “ankle weights Wallace,” that kid is going to see that. And two, if they covered the Eagles, I’d be deathly afraid of them airing some dumb question I asked one of the players or coaches. A few examples:
- In 2010, Quintin Mikell was coming off the field, and I said, “Q, you got a sec?” Mikell stopped to talk, and when he did, I realized I didn’t really have anything to ask him. I mean, why the hell would I stop him if I didn’t have anything ready? Anyway, I fired off three of the dumbest questions imaginable, which he politely answered, and I was like, “OK, thanks Q.” It was reminiscent of the scene in Dumb and Dumber where Jim Carrey comes out of the 7-11.
- This year, special teams coach Bobby April was sitting down talking with reporters, and I was sitting directly across from him. I started in on this long-winded, rambling thing about… well, I don’t even remember. Anyway, as I was was about 15 seconds into my question (15 seconds is the equivalent of 3 eternities for a football reporter question), I realized I had forgotten the question I was getting at, and I just kind of stopped talking. Bobby April was politely sitting there trying to understand what I was asking, and he tries to bail me out by saying “Are you asking me (and then he took a stab at a question I might have been leading to)?” It wasn’t where I was going, but I was like “Yeah, that’ll do.” Embarrassing.
The “small beds” story emerging from Giants camp is great. Apparently, a half dozen or so of the Giants’ beefier players are experiencing back stiffness and/or pain from sleeping on terrible dorm beds. I think it would be pretty easy to make fun of that situation, but being 6’4 myself, I feel for those guys. I’ve slept on many a sofa in my day, and feel their pain. Of course, they’re practicing football all day, as opposed to me playing football video games.
The Cowboys 3-0 win over Oakland Monday night was one of the sorriest displays of professional football I’ve ever seen. I understand that some guys were out with injuries, but that Cowboys OL has all the makings of being an utter disaster this year… even more so than in previous years. But it wasn’t all bad. I like that Andre Holmes kid. He has a chance to be that #3 WR. Big body, but looks smooth when he runs. I’d like to see more of him against another team’s 1’s, but so far so good. I’d give him the better reps over Kevin Ogletree in preseason game 2 if I were the Cowboys.
A few season ending injuries to defensive linemen to report: Shaun Rogers’ tenure with the Giants is over before it really got started. Blood clot for him. I’d have to imagine this will be the end of his career. Also, NT Chris Neild of the Redskins is done for the season with a torn ACL. In the opener last season, Neild got on the field for 8 snaps against the Giants. He had 3 tackles and 1.5 sacks. If he had played all 1056 snaps on defense last year and kept up that pace, he would have had 396 tackles and 198 sacks. There was such promise with young Neild.
Eagles camp is over up at Lehigh, which means one thing: More time for the rest of the NFC East. Yay!