Hard Knocks 1st and 10: All Hail Mike Vrabel & Christian Covington

This is my third season watching the HBO show Hard Knocks, which takes a look inside NFL training camp of a given team each season. While nothing will compare to my Bengals in 2013, this season with the Texans is off to a good start (though I said the same thing about Atlanta and all we really ended up with was a really funny segment where the WRs go bowling). Nonetheless, I am keeping my hopes high this season, especially since I already have ten memorable moments from Episode 1:

10. Pop quiz time. While it is charming enough that Bill O’Brien quizzes his team on who the employees are, what I thoroughly enjoyed was the subtle lesson about nepotism in a sport that is a meritocracy. Who is the CFO? McNair, good job. And who is his father? The owner, good job. Like an NFL version of this:

9. Speaking of nepotism, I don’t really know why Arian Foster has been so injury-prone his whole career, but did anyone else raise an eyebrow when he is like, “This is my trainer. He is also my brother”?

8. I am not a fan of on-field fighting, nor was I particularly impressed with Deandre Hopkins and DeAngelo Hall trash talking one another. What was impressive was Hopkins running a route so vengeful dude broke his ankle trying to chase him down.

7. Vince Wilforke’s wife trash talking his basketball game. “Where’s Dick Vitale?”

6. I love how O’Brien and staff keep telling the team how everyone is underestimating them and no one expects them to do shit this season and that the media has it wrong and they are better than they think they are. Then not two second later they will say something like, “You know when he coached the Patriots…” or “When I was a Patriot…” or “The Patriots do it this way…” Hoping the season ends with an NFL version of this:

5. How much time is spent on JJ Watt interacting not with people, but random inanimate objects like a tire, one of those football contraptions you push pretending it is your opponent, a water bottle? Not to mention his singing along with his hype music. All I can think is that JJ would make an AWESOME American Gladiator.

4. Though, I can’t bag on JJ too hard, cause his commenting on how straight the lines are on the Redskins practive field. “Think dude was hammered when he painted these lines.”

3. The winner of the No Shame in My Game award goes to Ben Jones, who completely unprodded admits he vomited on the ball during a college game and continued on with the play. That’s my Pac-12, ladies and gentlemen.

2. Christian Covington took a massive lead in the “favorite rookie” contest when he informed the cameras he intended to spend his down time at camp reading CS Lewis.

1. There is always an adorable rookie on Hard Knocks and there is always a hilarious member of the coaching staff. We have our rookie. I’m pretty our coach is former Patriots player Mike Vrabel who won me over as soon as he gave his Snake Person players a stern talking to about what work is. Nothing like a guy not even your parents’ age reminding you that you are playing a game and it isn’t exactly hard work. All that was missing was a digging ditches reference, but hey it is only Episode 1.


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