Browns to be fea­tured on HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’

Orlando Sentinel - - PAGE 2 - By Tom Withers

CLEVELAND — Ready or not, the Cleveland Browns are get­ting their close-up.

Com­ing off a historic, dis­mal 0-16 sea­son, the Browns have been cho­sen to appear on HBO's pop­u­lar “Hard Knocks” se­ries that gives NFL fans a be­hind-thescenes look at train­ing camp.

The Browns have turned down pre­vi­ous op­por­tu­ni­ties to be on the award-win­ning se­ries. But with re­newed op­ti­mism around Cleveland fol­low­ing the re­cent draft, and the se­lec­tion of quar­ter­back Baker May­field, the team is grant­ing HBO un­lim­ited ac­cess to its up­com­ing camp.

Cleveland is the 13th fran­chise to par­tic­i­pate in “Hard Knocks,” which be­gan in 2001 with the Bal­ti­more Ravens. The Tampa Bay Buc­ca­neers were fea­tured last sum­mer.

Although they've won only one game the past two sea­sons un­der coach Hue Jack­son, the Browns see the show as a pos­si­bil­ity to high­light some of their younger play­ers and put a pos­i­tive spin on their re­build.

“NFL Films has al­ways been ex­cep­tional at bring­ing fans closer to the game and they do an out­stand­ing job with ev­ery show they pro­duce, in­clud­ing HBO's Hard Knocks,” Browns own­ers Dee and Jimmy Haslam said. “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.”

HBO's cam­eras are cer­tain to fo­cus on May­field, the brash Heis­man Tro­phy win­ner from Ok­la­homa the Browns chose over other quar­ter­backs. May­field is ex­pected to back up Ty­rod Tay­lor this sea­son, but their com­pe­ti­tion could make for the kind com­pelling TV that has made the se­ries a must­watch for foot­ball junkies.

A 30-per­son film crew will be at the team's train­ing fa­cil­ity in Berea to record more than 2,000 hours of footage for the five-seg­ment se­ries that will de­but Aug. 7.

Browns gen­eral man­ager John Dorsey had reser­va­tions about the se­ries, but feels the team is equipped to han­dle the added scru­tiny.

“Once we sat down and talked about it as an or­ga­ni­za­tion, I feel a lot bet­ter and un­der­stand why the time is right,” Dorsey said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.