The Chicago Bears are one of eight eligible teams for the HBO series, Hard Knocks. While being saddled with the show carries a negative connotation, here’s why it could actually be a good thing.
The Chicago Bears will look to bounce back this offseason, but they may have a few more eyes an ears along for the ride. As of January 6th, Chicago is one of eight teams eligible for Hard Knocks. Currently, the Buccaneers, Jaguars, Eagles, Saints, Ravens, Browns, Colts, and Titans are eligible with the Bears.
The NFL ultimately decides who appears on the show each year; the teams have no say.
Bears’ Chairman George McCaskey has publicly stated that he hopes the Bears never get featured on the hit HBO show. He cited the desire for privacy in the locker room and in coaching meetings as his main grievances. However, McCaskey could see his franchise benefit from the added media coverage this offseason.
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Head coach John Fox has earned a reputation for running a covert operation throughout the last two seasons. Outside of Bill Belichick and the Patriots, the Bears might be the most deceitful organization when it comes to injuries and personnel decisions. The Bears were especially quiet about injuries to Kyle Fuller, Jay Cutler, Kevin White, and Pernell McPhee over the past two seasons.
Losing seasons combined with a borderline deceitful head coach has created a rift between the fan base and the Bears. Perhaps the most telling evidence of the rift occurred when over 10,000 fans opted not to attend the last two home games this season. Attendance at Soldier Field dropped nearly 2,000 on average from 2015 to 2016.
HBO would have plenty of storylines to cover if the NFL elected Chicago. Kevin White’s comeback coupled with questions at quarterback and an incoming 3rd overall pick would be just a few things to cover.
While McCaskey might not like the breach of privacy, his franchise is losing connection to its fans. Allowing the cameras to come in could help reestablish a rapport with the disgruntled fans.