How do you suppose Head Coach Bill O’Brien of the Houston Texans feels about his team’s participation in “Hard Knocks” last summer? We know the Texans, though they really had no choice in the matter, went along with it without apparently trying to sabotage the show, but still . . .
There is a reason why the U. S. Supreme Court still resists having its proceedings and deliberations televised, and it is probably the same reason as Coach O’Brien’s when he initially resisted Hard Knocks: People behave differently when they are on camera. The media, of course, want to do the Supremes, just like they wanted to do Coach O’Brien. In the case of the Supremes, they invoke the argument that the Court’s actions are the public’s business, that the people have a right to know. In the case of Hard Knocks, the media (at least HBO) have an easier case to make to the NFL: it is good theater, a great marketing device for the league, and if it only screws up one team for one year, no big deal.
It is hard to watch the 2015 version of the Texans without forming the impression that something is very wrong, that the talent is not that bad (better than last year’s 9 & 7 team), that the problem might be the coaching. Do you suppose the coaches did a lousy job of preparing the team because they could not concentrate 100% of their attention upon their job of preparing the team? Same with the players? Do you suppose Coach O’Brien, who is a very smart and entertaining guy, got a little too caught up in playing to the camera?