Here's the deal: If an NFL team hasn't appeared on HBO's documentary series Hard Knocks in the last 10 years, hasn't reached the playoffs the last two seasons, or didn't just hire a new coach, they can be mandated by the league to take part in the show.
And that means the Cardinals, who just missed the playoffs last season (and would have made it if the postseason included 14 teams), are candidates for Hard Knocks 2014, which tapes and airs during training camp. This does not sit well with coach Bruce Arians.
"I think it's a total distraction to what you're trying to accomplish," Arians said via AZCentral.com, "because everything about Hard Knocks is getting on television and being an individual. And it's a team game."
Arians, who might be one of the most interesting people in the league, says he'll clam up if the Hard Knocks cameras end up in Arizona this summer.
"I don't watch reality TV," he said. "It does nothing for me so I don't really want to be on reality TV. I would have to change totally how I coach. It would not be acceptable to a lot of people, and I've been down the road with some people."
If this all sounds familiar, it should; back in October, Arians said the show was "an embarrassment to players," adding that, "I think when players are released, some of the things that are said between coaches and players are too personal, and nobody else's business."
Arizona is one of eight teams -- along with the Steelers, Bears, Bills, Giants, Jaguars, Rams and Raiders -- that the league could force to take part in the series. Early indications, according to AZCentral.com, are that the Cards won't be featured. That's good news for Arians, but bad news for Mike Tomlin or Tom Coughlin, our favorites to end up with the short straw.