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Patricia, Quinn Say Raiders Better Suited For 'Hard Knocks' Than Lions

"Nobody wants to do it -- except Oakland," Quinn joked.

February 12, 2019 - 9:01 am
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If the NFL and HBO come calling, the Lions can't say no. Detroit is one of five teams this year that's eligible for the hit TV show "Hard Knocks." 

But Lions head coach Matt Patricia and general manager Bob Quinn have a better idea. 

Asked by a fan at the team's season ticket holder summit Monday night about potentially appearing on "Hard Knocks," Patricia quipped, "I think Jon Gruden is an excellent choice for that show. I think the Oakland Raiders and everything they've got going on right now would be fantastic viewing for everybody to watch."

Per a rule passed by NFL owners in 2013, teams are only eligible for "Hard Knocks" if A) they don't have a first-year head coach B) they haven't made the playoffs in the past two seasons and C) they haven't appeared on the show in the past 10 years. That eliminates all but the Lions, Raiders, Giants, 49ers and Redskins for the 2019 season. 

The team that's tabbed by HBO has no say in the matter. 

In a follow-up question from the host of Monday night's event, Patricia was asked if being featured on Hard Knocks would be like a six-week long visit to the dentist for multiple root canals. He sighed and said, "Yeah," before adding, "I definitely think I would get a lot of phone calls from my mom at night if that show was on."

At that point, Quinn chimed in by pointing out that "Hard Knocks" provides extra scouting material for the rest of the NFL's teams. It's something he picked up on during his time with the Patriots. 

"One of my guys in scouting watches the show if we're playing (the featured team) that year," Quinn said. "We DVR that show, we watch that show. We might glean a little thing about a personnel matter or a scheme thing, so that's something that other teams always do. I know we do it, we did it at our previous team, I've done it here. So it's real.

"Is it going to be a matter of a win or a loss? I'm not sure, but we take the stuff that we do behind our doors pretty privately and pretty securely, so that's something that is definitely a factor." 

There's a reason, of course, the NFL doesn't allow teams the right of refusal. 

"Yeah, because nobody wants to do it -- except Oakland," Quinn said. 

Coming off a 4-12 campaign that saw them trade multiple star players, the Raiders own the fourth overall pick in the draft and have a made-for-TV coach in Gruden. They're also entering their final season in Oakland before relocating to Las Vegas. 

HBO typically announces its "Hard Knocks" team in May. The show, which debuted in 2001 and has aired every year since 2012, is comprised of five episodes during training camp and the preseason.