Steelers Mike Tomlin Calls HBO Hard Knocks “A Joke”

It’s very possible that the Pittsburgh Steelers could be chosen this year to be the subject matter for the HBO training camp documentary, “Hard Knocks”, and if that ultimately happens, head coach Mike Tomlin will not be happy camper.

During a recent sit down interview with Bob Pompeani of KDKA-TV, Tomlin shared his thoughts on the matter.

“On a personal level, I’m not in favor of it,” said Tomlin. “That’s just me. I think that time of year in terms of team development, there are a lot of complex things going on as it is. There’s many layers to it and to add to it, is not conducive to what we go there to do, from my perspective.”

Tomlin did not stop there with his feelings on possibly being the subject matter this year.

“It is a joke and just because it happens to be popular, doesn’t mean I have to participate,” he said.

The NFL will not decide on which team will be on the NFL reality show until June or July.

  • Maureen A Gomes

    Just what Goodell needs to hear. The Steelers will definitely be selected now. Oh well, as a fan of this team, I’m looking forward to it.

  • Superdriller316

    Is the league going to pull a comp pick for Tomlin calling Hard Knocks a JOKE? Maybe another 100K fine?

  • T R

    Well as a big fan and woudl love to watch it.. Tomlin pretty much gauranteed we will be watching it.. well guess i gotta subscribe to HBO now.. ugh..

  • Brendon Glad

    As much as I get tired of Goodell’s power-trips…I actually can understand this one. I don’t think it’s fair that a show which NFL fans love receives such tepid volunteerism by the teams. This is NOT live television, mike. Nor is it military intelligence. Your genius military strategies will not be exposed, and thus collapse the free world. I hope the NFL forces the Steelers to participate…and guess what? There will be one new HBO subscriber named Brendon Glad if that happens. And I’m pretty sure both the league and HBO know I won’t be the only new subscriber who would join specifically for that reason.

  • Game_Time

    I agree that it is a Joke and most of the organizations/teams that have been featured on Hard Knocks are jokes as well

  • Brendon Glad

    And I will giggle like a little schoolgirl the year they force Belichick to do it. He thinks he’s holding Riddle of the Sphinx behind his gates, and it gets REALLY annoying how important he thinks his secrets are. Of course, he does cheat a lot, so I’ll touche’ myself.

  • T R

    If you make playoffs you can’t be forced to attend it. So Belichick is free unless he volunteers.

  • PA2AK

    As a fan…i’m dreading the possibility.

  • PA2AK

    i get the exact opposite reaction. I don’t want to see this happen at all!

  • John A Stewart

    If we would have made the playoffs coach Tomlin wouldn’t have to worry.

  • Jazz

    You’re an idiot!!! How long have you been a fan of the Steelers? This isn’t something the Steelers are in favor of, not just Mike Tomlin but the entire Rooney Family in the front office. This isn’t the Steelers way at all.

  • Jazz

    Hmm! Another idiot!

  • SteelersDepot

    If you want to stay around here, you will change your ways quickly.

  • SteelersDepot


  • steeltown

    Thank you Tomlin.. I couldn’t agree more

  • Steelers12328882

    Mixed feelings on this one. Probably not the greatest thing for the team, but as a fan I’d love to watch it. Definitely not the smartest thing for Tomlin to call it a joke tho, and say he doesn’t have to participate just because it’s popular lol. If there’s someone out there that wants to stick it to the Steelers then he just gave ’em extra motivation.

  • Matt Manzo

    The first year of the show I was in love! Even if it was the Bengals! Sure it’s not ideall for the team but these guys have to understand how little we know about how they run their business and it’s such a treat to peak behind the curtain! I just got HBO so I’m hoping it’s us!
    Especially with all the new faces we’ll have this year! Being on the west coast I never get this kinda coverage of my team!

  • Milliken Steeler

    We don’t need that garbage. Isn’t life reality enough for you guys? Go watch swamp garbage or something.smh

    We are rebuilding for the near future and this reality garbage is not welcome by me.


    I agree 100% with Tomlin. That show is a joke and is for franchises with no class.

  • steelster

    I don’t care about hard knocks but I wish they would do away with that Thursday night game.

  • J&LSteeler

    Agree. The folks who want to see this are akin to the paparazzi….c’mon, get real…

  • Louis Goetz

    Belichick just spent the entire 2013 season mic’d, which the NFL Network is turning into a series.

  • PoKey21

    I’m so torn. I want to see my team on Hard knocks really bad, but also don’t want the distraction. I would despise bringing in Someone like Micheal Sam or Tim Tebow not because of their religion or sexual orientation but because the media circus that will follow. I guess if I was forced to choose one way or the other I would agree w Tomlin and be against it. Does anyone know exactly how long the filming takes place for??

  • Tom

    If the cards fall right, we can see James Harrison on Hard Knocks, two years in a row.

  • Tom

    Why is that?
    I wish there were NFL games every night of the week, 52 weeks of the year.

  • joed32

    Does that mean that you wouldn’t watch if the Steelers are on? I don’t like the idea either but I would feel compelled to watch it.

  • Virdin Barzey

    Couldn’t disagree with you anymore.

  • Virdin Barzey

    Amen. Mike, I hope you fight this crap. To even make it mandatory is just plain stupid. Just because some fans want it don’t mean you should do it.

    For Goodell its all about the money and trust me, if he gets additional games, HBO might be the next billion dollar bidder.

  • Its complete crap! Good for him

  • PA2AK

    No I wouldn’t. That’s more because I’m cheap and won’t pay for HBO, but I’ll say it’s because I don’t agree with them being on there, lol.

  • Steve

    After what Tomlin said, wouldn’t be surprised if they made the Steelers do Hard Knocks this year and maybe next time he won’t open his mouth and say something stupid.

  • joed32

    Fair enough, but there’s always the possibility of a friend’s house.

  • ThinkerT

    Unfortunately, I think Tomlin DOES have to worry about it. Of the eight teams eligible this year (Arizona, Buffalo, Chicago, Jacksonville, New York Giants, Oakland, Pittsburgh, St. Louis) the Steelers are by far the most nationally popular and likely the biggest possible attraction for the show (followed by the Bears and Giants, IMO). If no one volunteers I could see them being picked.

    However, the Rooneys do have considerable pull in the league…

  • Fr33th1nk3r

    So let me get this right….
    When Tomlin gives the standard PC answers in press conferences– the fans castrate him for his clichés.
    When Tomlin actually gives his opinion on something (an opinion shared by most fans)– now he is stupid for opening his mouth?

    You just can’t please some fans…

  • Brendon Glad

    Wow! Gotta say I never would have seen that coming. Good for him. maybe he’s learned that it’s not that big of a deal to give access. Hopefully the Steelers will learn the same this year.

  • Brendon Glad

    Based on Louis’ comment below, looks like I need to backtrack on my second blurb. That’s fine. I’m glad Belichick is coming to realize that you can still win football games while giving access. If it was a live telecast, I’d understand. But it’s carefully edited to not put teams at a disadvantage.

  • Louis Goetz

    Hard Knocks chronicles training camp; that’s all.