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Roger Goodell wants formal rotation of teams for 'Hard Knocks'

By John Breech | CBSSports.com

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell would like to see a 'formal rotation of teams on HBO's Hard Knocks. (USATSI)
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell would like to see a formal rotation of teams on HBO's Hard Knocks. (USATSI)

If NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has his way -- and well, he usually does -- HBO's Hard Knocks will eventually involve a formal rotation of teams.

That's probably good news for a show that was reportedly turned down by the Falcons, 49ers, Texans, Seahawks and Redskins this season and will probably be turned down by everyone except the Jaguars next year if the Bengals tank it in 2013.

"We're talking about some kind of formal rotation where teams participate in the show on a more regular basis," Goodell said, via the Bengals team site. "Not necessarily more frequently, but on a regular basis so that it is a shared obligation and it would give more teams an opportunity to have this."

A 'shared obligation' sounds like Goodell would like to see more than one team per season on the show, which could be tough because, as noted above, teams don't really seem too enthusiastic about the chance to be on the show.

On the other hand, the plan could work with multiple teams if that means the NFL Films crew won't be taking over a team's facilities for six weeks.

Teams may be more open to the idea if they're only featured for one of the six weeks. That way they don't have to deal with the Hard Knocks distraction throughout training camp.

However, that probably wouldn't be as interesting to the viewer because you wouldn't have storylines developing over the course of camp.

Either way, we could get a sample of a multiple team Hard Knocks in August when the Bengals practice with the Falcons. Cincinnati and Atlanta will be practicing together at the Falcons' team facilities in Flowery Branch, Ga., on Aug. 5 and 6, and it's hard to envision a scenario where Atlanta doesn't end up in at least one episode.

So the joke's on you, Atlanta. You turned down Hard Knocks but then agreed to practice with a team before you knew they were going to be on Hard Knocks. So you're probably going to be on Hard Knocks anyway. And because of that, you may have paved the way for Goodell's multiple team Hard Knocks dream to come true.


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