- For the first time ever, HBO’s Hard Knocks will be filming and airing in the middle of the NFL season.
- The popular docuseries will be following the Indianapolis Colts, also for the first time, and releasing episodes beginning in November.
- More NFL news here.
2021 marks 20 years since HBO’s popular NFL docuseries Hard Knocks debuted by following and filming the Baltimore Ravens as the team prepared to try and repeat as Super Bowl champions.
Since then, 15 more seasons have aired on HBO (the docuseries did not air in 2003 to 2006, and again in 2011) featuring the Dallas Cowboys (three times), Kansas City Chiefs, Cincinnati Bengals (twice), New York Jets, Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons, Houston Texans, Los Angeles Rams (twice), Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, Oakland Raiders, and Los Angeles Chargers.
However, none of the Hard Knocks episodes were filmed and aired in the middle of the NFL season. Until now.
Thursday night, during the game between the New York Giants and Washington Football Team, it was revealed that the Indianapolis Colts will be the subject of a new, in-season edition of Hard Knocks.
— NFL Films (@NFLFilms) September 17, 2021
Fans of the show need not worry about this latest iteration of Hard Knocks replacing the preseason versions they’ve become accustomed to as HBO says this in-season version is just a new addition to the series.
“We could not be more thrilled to bring Hard Knocks and the remarkable behind-the-scenes access it provides for the entirety of an NFL season,” NFL Films senior executive Ross Ketover said in a statement. “Thanks to HBO, along with the incredible cooperation from the Colts, we are able to deliver a groundbreaking new edition of the series.”
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) September 17, 2021
Colts fans, and others who follow the NFL, weren’t quite sure what to make of this news.
The only thing I want to watch less than a Carson Wentz-led Colts team is a Carson Wentz-led Colts team on Hard Knocks.— Phillip Heilman (@phillip_heilman) September 17, 2021
Peyton NEVER would have agreed to that. No way in hell he'd want cameras in meeting rooms and at his practices— Leah (@leah_bh) September 17, 2021
Why did they choose one of the most uninteresting teams— RJ CHIEFS 2021-22 SUPER BOWL CHAMPS (@RJames0110) September 17, 2021
F my life.— Rodolfo Jiménez (@RodolfoJimR) September 17, 2021
Putting a tent around this circus. Nice— Biggs (@njsgambato) September 17, 2021
you know how that Netflix F1 show turned some of our seemingly normal friends into people who wake up really early on weekend mornings to watch European car racing? what if in-season Hard Knocks turns random Europeans into diehard Colts fans— Rodger Sherman (@rodger) September 17, 2021
If this new Hard Knocks format sounds familiar it may be because NFL Films has already done something very similar with Amazon Prime Video’s All or Nothing docuseries.
All or Nothing aired from 2015 to 2019 and featured the Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, Dallas Cowboys, Carolina Panthers, and Philadelphia Eagles.
The big difference with Hard Knocks airing in-season with the Colts is the fact that All or Nothing episodes did not get released until until the following summer.
The first episode of this new in-season Hard Knocks featuring the Colts will begin airing on Novemeber 17 with new episodes airing on each following Wednesday.