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Atlanta Falcons to be Featured in HBO's 'Hard Knocks'
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Atlanta Falcons to be Featured in HBO's 'Hard Knocks'

Jun 13 2014, 2:46am CDT | by

The Atlanta Falcons will be featured in HBO's "Hard Knocks" this season, per multiple reports.

The Atlanta Falcons will be featured in HBO's "Hard Knocks" this season, per multiple reports.  Jay Adams of the Falcons' official website wrote more about the development on June 12:  "The Atlanta...

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18 weeks ago

Atlanta Falcons to be Featured in HBO's 'Hard Knocks'

Jun 13 2014, 2:46am CDT | by

Atlanta Falcons to be Featured in HBO's 'Hard Knocks' Photo Credit: Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons will be featured in HBO's "Hard Knocks" this season, per multiple reports.

The Atlanta Falcons will be featured in HBO's "Hard Knocks" this season, per multiple reports. 

Jay Adams of the Falcons' official website wrote more about the development on June 12: 

"The Atlanta Falcons will be featured on HBO Sports' award-winning documentary series HARD KNOCKS, the club announced on Thursday. 

"The Falcons, HBO Sports, and NFL Films will team up for an all-access, behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to make it in the National Football League when HARD KNOCKS: Training Camp with the Atlanta Falcons debuts on August 5. 

"The sports-based reality series kicks off its ninth season, presented in HD on Tuesday, Aug. 5 (10 p.m. ET), excusively on HBO. Subsequent hour-long episodes debut on Tuesdays at the same time, with an encore replay every Wednesday in August at 11:00 p.m., culminating in the Sept. 2 season finale. 

"'We are excited about the opportunity to give our fans a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to prepare an NFL team for the rigors of a 16-game regular season and beyond,' said Falcons Owner & Chairman Arthur M. Blank. 'This marks the first time that our franchise will be featured on HARD KNOCKS and we look forward to showcasing our great players and coaches to football fans all across America.'

"The award-winning documentary will focus on the daily lives and routines of Falcons players and coaches and showcase the club as it prepares to do battle in the always competitive NFC South Division of the NFL. 

"'We are thrilled that the ninth edition of the HARD KNOCKS series will spotlight the Atlanta Falcons,' said Ken Hershman, President of HBO Sports. 'It's exciting to feature a team, a franchise and a city for the first time on HARD KNOCKS. We are grateful to head coach Mike Smith and the entire organization for agreeing to partcipate and look forward to what we expect to be one of the few summertime programs that is truly appointment TV and we can't wait for the premiere on August 5th.' 

"Additionally, HBO will chronicle an intriguing mix of high-profile veterans, including Pro Bowlers QB Matt Ryan, WR Roddy White, WR Julio Jones and S William Moore, along with free agents and rookie hopefuls throughout training camp and the preseason. Each week, players will experience drills, meetings and fun, while struggling to prove that they have what it takes to make the team and make their mark in the NFL. 

"Since 2008, the Falcons have recorded a .625 winning percentage and have qualified for the NFC playoffs four times (2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012). During the same time span, the Falcons posted a 13-3 record twice (2010 and 2012) and are one of the NFL's most dominant teams at home, posting a winning percentage of .750 at the Georgia Dome (36-12). 

"'We are looking forward to connecting with our fans across the country as the program chronicles our 2014 training camp,' said Falcons head coach Mike Smith. 'The series will give fans a behind-the-scenes look at the competition between players as we build our roster and prepare for the season. We are looking forward to the start of camp in late July.'

"A 30-person NFL Films crew will be at the Falcons' training camp at team headquarters in Flowery Branch, Ga., shooting more than 1,500 hours of video over the course of the five-week series. Camera and sound crews will be given unencumbered access to the players' and coaches' meeting rooms, training rooms, dormitories and practice fields."

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's D. Orlando Ledbetter, who says last year's "Hard Knocks" espisode featuring the Cincinnati Bengals averaged 3.6 million viewers, says the Falcons declined an offer to be on the show several years ago. He posted a 2011 interview with Atlanta general manager Thomas Dimitroff who explains why the team turned down the opportunity: 

"I truly believe that an organization has to be in the right spot to jump into something like Hard Knocks. I think it sheds a lot of light in our league. This is a league of entertainment. There are some traditionalists that struggle with it, but they have to work against the grain a little bit and see that this is about entertainment. Hard Knocks is a good show for the fan base. 

"Two years ago we were approached and decided that it wasn't right for us at that point. Dimitroff said back in 2011. That's not to say we wouldn't go down that road if it was presented to us at another time. We are much closer to being in that spot where it's not going to be as much of a distraction as it would have been another time. 

"It's such an individual thing. Hard Knocks could be right for some of the teams that are fairly entrenched. It could be right for some team that wants to kick some more brand recognition"

Falcons free safety Dwight Lowery, who was part of the New York Jets team who was on "Hard Knocks" four years ago, told ESPN's Vaughn McClure that being on the show can help the team with its focus heading into the 2014 regular season: 

"New Atlanta Falcons free safety Dwight Lowery knows firsthand all about the HBO series 'Hard Knocks.' 

"And Lowery knows things can get ugly. 

"Lowery was a part of the award-winning documentary in 2010 while a member of the New York Jets. He was a spectator what they called the 'King Ugly' competition between the rookies. 

"'That thing was hilarious,' Lowery recalled. 'Pretty much the players voted for who the ugliest player on the team was. You had to put money in as your vote. Whoever got third place, they got 75 percent of the pot. Second place got 25 percent of the pot. And first place didn't get anything, because they were so ugly. Some defensive back won, too (Brian Jackson).

"'I just watched it the other day. And watching it, knowing that I was in those seats, it brings back a lot of memories.'"

Lowery then says having HBO around to film the Falcons' training camp should help loosen the players up, per ESPN. 

"Honestly, my point of view is this: If you're not able to function when there are cameras around at the facility or practice or wherever, how are you going to go out and win a national game with 60,000 people in the stands? You're on national TV. Cameras are rolling. If you're a team that's fortunate to go all the way, Super Bowl week has become crazier and crazier as the years have progressed. 

"There is going to be a lot of that kind of hoopla and jazz going on that you need to focus in that type of situation as well. 

"Hopefully, it will be something that we can use for energy on those days in camp where it gets hard and long; kind of keep the mood light, I guess. I honestly don't think it will be a distraction. If it is, I think only at first because it's brand new. I think three weeks into training camp, guys will get accustomed to them being there and actually kind of get sick of it." 

 
Update
11

1 hour ago

Beckham 'should ground share in MLS'

Oct 22 2014 12:08pm CDT | Source: BBC Sport

David Beckham should ground share if he wants to create a franchise in the MLS, says the owner of the Atlanta Falcon ...
Source: BBC Sport   Full article at: BBC Sport
 

 
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4 hours ago

Calvin Johnson misses practice Wednesday, expected to be out of fantasy lineups a while

Oct 22 2014 9:15am CDT | Source: SBNation

The Lions' superstar did not practice with the team on Wednesday and is likely out against the Falcons for Week 8. We break down the fantasy implications. Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (ankle) stayed on the sidelines at Wednesday's practice, according to Lions' senior writer Tim Twentymen. Johnson has missed the last two games with the ailment. Fantasy Impact: Given that th ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation
 

 
Update
9

2 days ago

Calvin Johnson will travel to London, playing status uncertain

Oct 20 2014 12:27pm CDT | Source: SBNation

Detroit isn't sure yet whether the star wideout will be healthy enough to play against the Falcons. Calvin Johnson will be crossing the pond with his team this week. Whether he'll be doing anything more than sightseeing has yet to be determined. Detroit Lions coach Jim Caldwell said the star wide receiver will "absolutely" travel to London with the team to take on the Atlanta Falcons, according to Rod Beard of The Detroit News. But the ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation
 

 
Update
8

2 days ago

Steve Smith: NFC South is 'finesse' division; AFC North is 'physical'

Oct 20 2014 9:02am CDT | Source: SBNation

Former Carolina Panthers receiver Steve Smith says the AFC North plays tougher football than the NFC South. For the third time in four weeks, the Baltimore Ravens thoroughly dominated a team from the NFC South, cruising to a 29-7 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. Wide receiver Steve Smith played 13 seasons with the Carolina Panthers before joining the Ravens in the offseason and slammed his former division some after the Baltimore victory on Sunday: "I mean, foo ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation
 

 
Update
7

2 days ago

Undependable Jay Cutler at his most maddening in Bears’ loss

Oct 19 2014 9:31pm CDT | Source: chicago sun-times

WWAD? What would Aaron (Rodgers) do? Not this. WDJD? What did Jay (Cutler) do? Something not pretty. Something smelly and bad, for which the toilet was invented. It wasn’t just that Cutler threw for a mere 190 yards — half his total last week against the Atlanta Falcons — or that he threw a dreadful second-quarter interception ...
Source: chicago sun-times   Full article at: chicago sun-times
 

 
Update
5

1 week ago

10 Observations: Could this be a turning point for Mel Tucker, Bears?

Oct 13 2014 10:13pm CDT | Source: chicago sun-times

How do you like Mel Tucker now? The Bears’ defensive coordinator has been in the crosshairs of critics for overseeing the demise of a once-proud defense. But he earned at least a measure of redemption Sunday after he masterminded a defensive effort even Lovie Smith himself wou ...
Source: chicago sun-times   Full article at: chicago sun-times
 

 
Update
4

1 week ago

Roger Goodell could see pay cut after Ray Rice scandal

Oct 13 2014 1:43pm CDT | Source: SBNation

Arthur Blank hinted that the NFL owners are considering lowering the commissioner's compensation. Roger Goodell may very well end up surviving the Ray Rice scandal, but that doesn't mean the NFL commissioner won't pay a price for the mess he presided over. Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank, chairman of the league's compensation committee, hinted at last week's owners meeting that Goodell ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation
 

 
Update
3

1 week ago

49ers looked to extend Monday Night Football dominance

Oct 13 2014 10:45am CDT | Source: ninersnation

The San Francisco 49ers have won six straight Monday Night Football games. They look to extend their dominance when they face the St. Louis Rams in Week 6. Here is a look at some big stats for the 49ers. The San Francisco 49ers and St. Louis Rams square off on Monday Night Football to wrap up Week 6. This game marks the 49ers 71st appearance on Monday night, which is third behind the Miami Dolphins and Dallas Cowboys. The 49ers are 45-25 on MNF, w ...
Source: ninersnation   Full article at: ninersnation
 

 
Update
2

1 week ago

Larry Donnell has slow day, but has positive fantasy outlook going forward

Oct 13 2014 10:37am CDT | Source: SBNation

New York Giants tight end Larry Donnell had a slow day against the Eagles on Sunday. We break down the fantasy implications. New York Giants tight end Larry Donnell had a slow day against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. The second-year tight end caught just one pass for six yards, though he did have a touchdown reception erased by a penalty. Donnell has generated plenty of hype as a potential break out tight end this season, ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation
 

 
Update
1

1 week ago

Bears’ patchwork ‘D’ comes up big

Oct 12 2014 11:39pm CDT | Source: chicago sun-times

ATLANTA — It didn’t look easy, but cornerback Charles Tillman, with a bulky, signature-filled cast on his right arm, loudly and proudly managed to turn attention to the corner of the Bears’ locker room where the linebackers sat. “Here’s your unsung hero,” ­Tillman declared. ...
Source: chicago sun-times   Full article at: chicago sun-times
 

 

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Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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