If you’ve been holding your breath waiting to see if the Oakland Raiders are going to be on HBOs Hard Knocks, you need to see Antonio Brown’s Instagram story.
Brown can be seen working out while wearing a Raiders hoodie that says “Films” on the sleeve. Now, this is hardly confirmation that the Raiders will appear on the show, but it could be a hint at what’s to come. The Raiders are one of five teams that are eligible to appear on the show and everybody seems to be rooting for an appearance from Jon Gruden’s band of misfits.
The opportunity to see the likes of Antonio Brown and Richie Incognito watched under a microscope for training camp is certainly enticing, but the Raiders don’t want any part of it. Mark Davis went so far as to say he’d fire Jon Gruden and hire him back to avoid appearing on the show. However, it doesn’t seem like any team wants a part of it.
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A Big Distraction
Jon Gruden’s brother Jay went out of his to volunteer his brother and the Raiders for Hard Knocks. The Redskins, who Jay Gruden is the head coach of, are also eligible to appear on Hard Knocks and they are actually the betting favorite to land on the show.
It’s not surprising that most NFL teams would rather not appear on Hard Knocks, but it’s not a death sentence. Since the show started in 2001, 6 of 13 teams that were featured finished the season with more wins than they did the previous season. Most notably, the Cleveland Browns, who were featured last year, went 0-16 in 2017 and improved their win total by seven in 2018.
The Raiders are a team littered with volatile personalities, so it’s understandable why the Raiders would like to avoid it. That being said, nobody denies it would be must-watch television.