‘Hard Knocks’ to Feature Dallas Cowboys: How, When to Watch the Premiere

by Suzanne Halliburton

Get ready for the Dallas Cowboys to go through the Hard Knocks spin cycle. The long-running docuseries on HBO premieres Tuesday night.

And will America’s Team be compelling enough to entertain and inform Hard Knocks audiences? The Cowboys certainly have enough storylines to fill up lots of episodes.

HBO announced the choice of the Dallas Cowboys more than a month ago. Ken Rogers, who is vice president and senior coordinating producer for NFL Films, explained why the Cowboys would be so compelling.

In a statement to the media, Rogers said: “The Cowboys are one of the most storied franchises in NFL history and a team that elicits strong reactions from fans around the world. Tens of millions of fans love them, but just as many people love to hate them. Either way, when the Cowboys show up people watch, which makes them perfect for Hard Knocks.”

Interested in Hard Knocks? Here’s How to Watch It

If you’re a subscriber to HBO on cable or HBO Max, you can watch on cable or stream Tuesday’s episode. It’s the first of five Hard Knocks segments. They’ll be weekly and finish two days before the Cowboys kick off their season with a road game against Tampa Bay, the Super Bowl champions.

This will be the third Hard Knocks appearance for the Dallas Cowboys. The team also did so in 2002 and 2008. No other NFL team has made more than two appearances. Although Dallas was 6-10 last season, Jerry Jones’ team is still the most valuable franchise in the NFL. Last week, Forbes estimated Dallas’ value at $6.5 billion. Forbes has placed the Cowboys atop the list for 15 straight years.

Who might be some popular players to follow? What are the most compelling storylines for Fall, 2021?

Every Cowboys fan is paying close attention to the health status of quarterback Dak Prescott. He missed the final three months of the season after suffering a compound fracture of his right ankle. He was healthy when Dallas started training camp in Oxnard, Calif. But he’s now limited after straining his right (throwing) shoulder. The Dallas Morning News reported that the Cowboys contacted their neighbors — MLB’s Texas Rangers — about how best to treat such an injury.

Plus, count on Hard Knocks showing fans how Prescott and running back Ezekiel Elliott celebrated their birthdays in training camp. The show’s social media account already tweeted a link of Elliott wrapping a present for Prescott.

New Dallas defensive coordinator Dan Quinn also could fill up his own episode. He’s a fan of old-school rap and uses the songs to teach his new defensive scheme. He had his players write down the lyrics to Run DMC’s Sucker MCs earlier in camp.

Hard Knocks also likes to focus on new players. Dallas went defensive heavy in the draft. Eight of the Cowboys’ draft pick play on the defensive side of the ball. Linebacker Micah Parsons, at No. 12, was Dallas’ top draft choice.

So if you’re counting down the days until the start of the NFL season, a weekly dose of Hard Knocks will give you a good taste of your favorite sport.