From the start of episode 3, I could tell that Hard Knocks would be a good show. The opening seconds of the show began with defensive leader J.J. Watt giving a cursing filled speech after practice to hype the team up. We also got to see J.J. Watt catch a few balls from the jug machine, because the Texans lined him up last season as a TE a few times.
From there, we go to Coach Bill O’Brien doing what he’s been doing on every episode, keeping it very real with his players.
“I don’t care about draft position, or things like that. This is not only your audition to make the Texans, but it’s an audition for the whole NFL,” said O’Brien as his players listened on.
From there we see the first rookie getting cut, a classic Hard Knocks moment. They cut rookie DE Jasper Coleman to make room for safety Quentin Demps, who the team felt was a greater need.
Jadeveon Clowney was shown briefly being cleared to practice, which is great news for the Texans. Players went on a field trip of sorts, to NASA, and the players seemed to be like kids in a candy store.
We then meet wide receiver Uzoma Nwachukwu, who goes by the nick name “E.Z.”. Now we know he doesn’t have an E in his name, and now, so does his teammates. Former Jaguar Cecil Shorts was bothered by that.
“I’m done calling you E.Z. by the way cuz, I’m done. I don’t know what I’m gonna call you, but I’m done callin’ you E.Z. There’s not an ‘E’ in your name. You’ve been lying to me since April 20,” said Shorts.
E.Z. was very funny at NASA, asking some crazy questions like “Is there water in space?” and “I used to love Pluto as a planet. What happened there?”.
Rookie Khari Lee delivered an impersonation speech of Coach Bill O’Brien and received a plethora of laughs and applause for his performance.
We get to take a look into the life of running back Chris Polk, who is impressing the coaches on the field. His mother, stated that she used to punch him to make him tougher. In a funny interaction between the two, she tells the story of the day he finally hit back.
The best part of the episode to me however, was getting the answer EVERYONE wanted to know……..the starting QB was named. In dramatic fashion, O’Brien called Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallet into his office and proceeded to say that they’re almost the exact same QB. But in the end, he lets Hoyer know that he’s the starter for the season, right now.
The next episode of Hard Knocks will air on Tuesday September 1 at 10pm on HBO. To catch a re-run of this episode, you can watch it 5:45 pm today on HBO or get HBO Now.