Falcons To Be Featured on HBO Hard Knocks

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

This will be the Falcons first appearance on the show that goes behind the scenes of NFL training camps.

The Falcons could have declined the offer but I'm thinking the Falcons brass saw an opportunity to turn ticket and merchandise sales around improve their brand. I assumed their sales were bad but they are coming off of a record year. actually Sure ticket sales may drop from 2013 but you can't expect to set records every year.

Atlanta Falcons break season ticket sales record - The Falcoholic

The Falcons offseason continues to drag on, but one headline should all make you feel good about next season. Atlanta has already surpassed the mark for most season tickets sold in its 47-year history. Nice job, folks.

Plus the Falcons had to know if they decline this year it may be many seasons before they get another offer:

Atlanta Falcons to be featured on HBO's 'Hard Knocks' - NFL.com

The Falcons are taking part in the series by choice. Under new bylines adopted by the NFL last year, the Falcons could've ducked the show because they qualified for the postseason in the last two years. Teams can also decline if they have a new coach or have been the subject of Hard Knocks in the past 10 years.

There were sexier options on the market here, but great Hard Knocks seasons have never been guaranteed on team selection alone (the 2010 Jets being the obvious outlier, of course).

So what this also tells me is that it is possible for the Panthers to get on Hard Knocks at some point, if they get offered and don't have one of the caveats that allows them to decline.

I've watched several episodes of Hard Knocks in seasons past but I've never watched a full season. I may watch this season. There are three things I'm interested in seeing.

First I want to see if Matt Ryan really is the a-hole I think he is. He won't be able to hide it from the camera.

I'll also be interested to hear from local James Island hero WR Roddy White, who went to the same high school as my kids. Roddy recently lost his brother in a nightclub shooting so I'm sure that will be a story line at some point. BTW, my oldest daughter went to school with White's brother and my younger daughter went to school with the shooter. Now that is muffed up...but I digress.

My third interest in the show is around head coach Mike Smith. His sideline demeaner is something to behold so I do want to know if he eats baby chicks for breakfast.

So what else might we be on the watch out for during the coming season of Hard Knocks: Atlanta?

(Yes, humor is being requested)

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