The Hard Knocks Team has Been Announced and Vikings Fans May Want to Tune In

Well, the long wait is over. No, not for training camp but, rather, for the Hard Knocks team announcement.

Every year, the folks over at HBO offer viewers an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at one team’s training camp and preseason. The series always generates plenty of interest, especially when a personality like Dan Campbell gets featured (last year, the Lions were the team).

While Campbell is hard to dislike, Aaron Rodgers is very easy to dislike, especially since Vikings fans are accustomed to seeing him as the Green Bay QB1. Both supporters and detractors will get the chance to see a bit more of Rodgers since the New York Jets are the featured team on Hard Knocks.

Hard Knocks and The New York Jets

ESPN’s Adam Schefter shared the news, writing, “NFL and NFL Films have selected the New York Jets to serve as this year’s team on Hard Knocks, per sources. Jets report to training camp one week from today, July 19, and the cameras will be rolling in full force.”

Of course, the main intrigue with the Jets is that Mr. Rodgers is the new sheriff in town. Zach Wilson vowed to make the incoming QB’s life hell in practice, but one has to think Rodgers is getting by alright. Maybe the cameras will show us something different.

Questions Answered: Packers Cooked, Team MVP at Bye, Most Exciting Game
Oct 23, 2022; Landover, Maryland, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports.

The Jets go beyond just their mercurial QB.

Currently, Quinnen Williams is holding out. The All-Pro DT is one of the best defenders in football so he wants to be paid accordingly. The lack of resolution with his contract means he’s one of the NFL’s preeminent trade candidates. If nothing gets down in the coming days, the HBO series will likely spend some time unpacking the situation and its significance.

Moreover, Robert Saleh is a fascinating head coach. He rose to prominence by creating a sensational defense in San Francisco, leveraging that brilliance into an opportunity to be the head coach for the Jets. Seeing him lead his team will be a fascinating part of the series.

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Dec 22, 2022; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) is sacked by New York Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (95) forcing a fumble during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Furthermore, New York is a team with some Vikings connections. Tyler Conklin — who recently petitioned for Dalvin Cook to join the Jets — is playing tight end for the Jets. On defense, Chazz Surratt is trying to establish himself as an everyday NFLer.

Plus, the Cook free agency drama is ongoing. Every team in the AFC East has been linked to the talented RB, so even if Cook decides to sign elsewhere it could very reasonably impact the Jets in a major way.

Purple Headlines
Jan 1, 2023; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) rushes with the football as Green Bay Packers safety Darnell Savage (26) defends during the first quarter at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Unfortunately, Minnesota won’t be playing New York during the upcoming season. However, the Vikings did play them last year, pulling off a 27-22 win to climb up to 10-2. During that game, Mike White threw for a whopping 369 yards but he did toss a pair of INTs while Kirk Cousins went for 173 yards and a touchdown.

Minnesota’s training camp begins on July 23rd when the rookies arrive. On July 25th, the veterans get to town and the official countdown will be on. Week 1 features the Tampa Bay Bucs on September 10th.

In the meantime, enjoy Hard Knocks.

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