ARIZONA CARDINALS

‘Hard Knocks,’ more than just a series for Arizona Cardinals in 2022

May 24, 2022, 6:55 AM | Updated: 7:39 am
Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 20...
Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)
(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

TEMPE — The Arizona Cardinals will have even more eyes on them than normal as the latest team to join HBO’s “Hard Knocks” franchise.

The series gives unprecedented access to the ins and outs of a franchise, bringing with it more narratives and a whole lot more cameras.

Bringing in a production of “Hard Knocks'” magnitude can come with its distractions. Uncover more and you’ll find out more.

But for head coach Kliff Kingsbury and Co., the franchise is taking the venture in stride, looking to turn the extra attention into added motivation.

“I think it’s exciting,” Kingsbury said. “Any time you get a chance to highlight some of the great people we have in this building, not just players but coaches, staff, and kind of tell their stories, see a different side of them. I think it will be really good TV.”

While this marks the first time the Cardinals have been in the HBO limelight –and only the second team to participate in “Hard Knocks In Season” — they aren’t completely flying blind.

With Arizona slated to be the next team in the series, Kingsbury reached out to someone with good authority on the matter in Indianapolis Colts GM Chris Ballard.

Ballard and the Colts just wrapped as HBO’s first in-season team. There’s certainly give and take involved in the process, but at the end of the day, Indianapolis looked like a much better team once the cameras started rolling.

“There’s some positives and some negatives but they were 3-5, when the show came they won six out of seven and felt like it was kind of a shot in the arm I think having them come in. We’ll see but it should be a pretty cool experience.”

That’s music to the ears of many Cardinals fans given Kingsbury’s infamous second-half-of-the-season record, highlighted by last year’s abomination of a finish on Arizona’s part.

Throw in the return of DeAndre Hopkins, and the pick-me-ups later on in the season are there for the Cardinals. They just have to roll with the punches and avoid the knockouts that have plagued Kingsbury in his coaching tenure.

“I think it’s something you have to go through to really figure it out,” Kingsbury said of “Hard Knocks.” “I think each case will be different.

“In my experience, any time a camera’s around, people tend to step up and be on their Ps and Qs a little bit more. I think it can be a real positive in that stretch of the season for us.”

Arizona Cardinals RB Eno Benjamin warms up ahead of OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) An Arizona Cardinals helmet during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals CB Darrell Baker Jr. warms up ahead of OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals WR Rondale Moore warms up ahead of OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals WR Rondale Moore warms up ahead of OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals WR Antoine Wesley speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals S Budda Baker speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL Manny Jones runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL Leki Fotu runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL Kingsley Keke runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL J.J. Watt runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL J.J. Watt runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals DL Leki Fotu runs through drills during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals S Budda Baker talks with CB Marco Wilson during OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports) Arizona Cardinals TE Zach Ertz speaks with the media after OTAs on Monday, May 23, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

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‘Hard Knocks,’ more than just a series for Arizona Cardinals in 2022