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Jets are bracing for an involuntary Hard Knocks assignment

The NFL apparently will not be listening to the preferences of the HC of the NYJ.

Per a league source, the Jets are bracing for the preseason Hard Knocks assignment, despite making known publicly (and privately) their lack of interest in serving as the focal point of this year’s show.

The Jets, Saints, Bears, and Commanders fit the criteria for being required to do the show in the 2023 preseason. Under a formula developed several years ago, the teams that can be compelled to do it include those without a new head coach, those who have not been to the playoffs in either of the last two years, and those that have not been the subject of the show for the last ten years.

The Jets, Saints, and Bears have made it clear that they don’t want to do it this year. The Commanders, we’re told, would do it, if assigned. (We’re also told the league prefers to wait until after the sale of the team is finalized, and that the Commanders could be this year’s in-season option.)

The league had commenced talking to some of the other 28 teams, hopeful to find a volunteer. The Lions were approached about a second straight appearance. They declined.

The Jets technically can’t decline, although the NFL typically does not make a team submit to Hard Knocks when it doesn’t want to.

Most fans would prefer the Jets. With high expectations, the presence of quarterback Aaron Rodgers, and the memories of a successful run in 2010 (when coach Rex Ryan had the Jets eating goddamn snacks), the Jets are definitely the most interesting of the four teams that can be required to do it — and more interesting than most if not all of the other 28 teams.

If the Jets get the short straw, it could actually make for a more compelling presentation, with a possible attitude emanating from the coaching staff and the rest of the team that they don’t want the cameras and microphones there. Now that would be a reality show.