“Hard knocks” is an apt way to describe the recent history of the Cleveland Browns. Now, they’ll be under the lens of cameras throughout training camp. Earlier today the NFL announced the Browns were the team chosen to be featured in 2018.
“We have been asked multiple times about being featured on Hard Knocks, and we really felt like it was our turn this year and the timing was right,” Browns’ owner Jimmy Haslam said in a statement. “We want to be great partners in this league, and we also recognize Hard Knocks gives fans a special opportunity to learn more about our team and players.”
Cleveland has a chance to get out of the basement its dwelled in for each of the last seven seasons. Much of the focus will be on an impressive rookie class. Baker Mayfield isn’t expected to start Week One, those honors will go to Tyrod Taylor, but as the #1 pick, he’ll forever be under the microscope. There’s also cornerback Denzel Ward, drafted 4th, running back Nick Chubb, and offensive linemen Austin Corbett as the team looks to replace Joe Thomas.
For any special Steelers’ interest, Chris Hubbard signed a five-year deal with the Browns and will be their starting right tackle.
The Browns were one of six teams who weren’t allowed to decline if the league chose them. The other five included: San Francisco, Denver, Baltimore, Washington, and the LA Chargers. Teams who haven’t made a head coaching change, haven’t made the playoffs in the last two years, and haven’t been on the show the last ten years aren’t able to decline if selected.
As USA Today points out, history isn’t on the Browns’ side. Only five of the 12 teams picked in its history have made the playoffs. Last year, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers slogged their way to a 5-11 season. But for fans, it’s an intimate look at the inner-workings of the game and NFL Films always tells an amazing story.
The first episode will debut August 7th.