3 Exceptions to "Hard Knocks" Rule and Why Bruce Arians Questioned NFL's Integrity

By Ryan Heckman
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Tuesday, some very interesting news was revealed around the NFL. There was a set of new rules that passed in regards to the hit series on HBO, “Hard Knocks.” When discussing future seasons and which teams will be apart of it, the question was brought up in the case that no team volunteered to be on the show — what happens then?

The NFL ruled that they may choose any team they would like to be a part of the series each season with three exceptions:

1. Teams with new coaches cannot be selected to participate.

2. Teams that made the playoffs in either of the previous two seasons may not be selected to participate.

3. Teams that appeared on “Hard Knocks” in the previous 10 years are not allowed to participate.

In light of the new rule change, Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians was asked about his thoughts on the matter, and let’s just say he doesn’t exactly adore the change.

“I think it’s a total distraction and I think it’s an embarrassment to the players,” Arians said on an interview with Sirius XM NFL Radio. “I think when players are released that some of the things that are said between coaches and players are too personal and nobody else’s business.”

Arians also said he would fight “all the way, all the way” to keep his Cardinals from appearing on the show if they did not make the playoffs this year.

While the idea of “Hard Knocks” is a very clever one, Arians hit the nail on the head in regards to one particular area. Many will remember the season in which Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson was caught up in a domestic violence case with his ex-wife and the Miami Dolphins chose to cut him in the waking hours. That conversation between Johnson and his coach was broadcast for the whole world to see.

Those kinds of conversations should absolutely not be allowed for the public to see. Athletes are already doing fans a favor by allowing cameras to follow them around all day long for the duration of training camp. There is a line that “Hard Knocks” has crossed and that line is drawn between general drama and personal privacy.

I am all for Arians’ decision to fight the cause if his Cardinals are chosen. The league should not be able to force something like this upon a team that is focused on winning and not on the spotlight. Arians has his head on straight and his priorities in line — the NFL has yet to follow that example.

Ryan Heckman is a Senior Writer for RantSports.comFollow him on Twitter  @ryanmheckman, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.



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