For some, the news is a tremendous relief while for others it is a disappointment. Regardless of where various fans fall on the spectrum, it appears the Pittsburgh Steelers will not be featured on the HBO reality series “Hard Knocks”, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
For the first time, Hard Knocks is planning to supersize and feature two teams this summer: the Los Angeles Rams and the Los Angeles Chargers, league sources tell ESPN.*— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 7, 2020
*(If there’s training camp)
The note included in Schefter’s report is of significance as teams continue to plan on holding training camp beginning in late July. But with the current coronavirus pandemic shutting down all sports, there is no guarantee the Steelers will be traveling to Latrobe on schedule to begin their preparations for the 2020 season.
Instead, HBO will be covering two teams at once as the city of Los Angeles will be featured by both the Rams and the Chargers. While many believed the Steelers would be the most attractive option for ratings due to their very large fan base, having the opportunity to cover two teams may have been more than HBO could expect.
What is curious about this choice to be featured on the show is that neither team fit the criteria which has been widely reported. With both teams reaching the postseason in 2018, including the Rams making it all the way to the Super Bowl, both teams were excluded from the list of franchises which were believed to qualify. It is uncertain at this time exactly how these two franchises came to be the choices.
As for the Steelers, what may have been there saving grace from being featured on the show, which many believe management did not want to have to go through, is the fact they were selected to play in the Hall of Fame Game against the Dallas Cowboys on August 6, 2020. With both the Hall of Fame Game and dealing with the filming of Hard Knocks being a situation most teams do not desire, asking one franchise to do both in the same offseason may have been more than what the NFL, or Art Rooney II, was willing to require.
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