Browns Declined Being Featured In HBO's "Hard Knocks" Series
Browns head coach Mike Pettine confirmed that the team “rejected an opportunity to be considered” as this year’s featured team for HBO's "Hard Knocks" series, according to Tom Reed of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. Pettine said that the Browns were “approached before” they drafted QB Johnny Manziel. Teams with first-year coaches have the “right to decline” appearing on the series. Pettine said, "It was for the same reason we didn't feel super comfortable having a camera in the draft room. Let's get through the first time, let's get through the first year." Pettine said that he is “not sure if HBO made a second request for the upcoming training camp after the Browns selected Manziel.” But it is “hard to imagine HBO not making another run at the Browns next season” with Manziel on the roster (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 6/9). In Cleveland, Chris Fedor wrote it is “not a surprise that the Browns were given consideration as they have plenty of intrigue” heading into the ’14 season. Pettine is a “first-year head coach” and the team has a new GM with Ray Farmer. There is going to be a “quarterback competition during training camp” between Manziel and incumbent QB Brian Hoyer, and the team has young players who are “emerging as top talents” in WR Josh Gordon and CB Joe Haden. The Browns have the “formula to be a surprise team in the NFL, one that finally ends a streak of futility that has lasted for more than a decade” (CLEVELAND.com, 6/9). CBS Sports Network's Tony Luftman called Pettine's decision a "wise and pragmatic one" ("Lead Off," CBSSN, 6/9).