NFL Films’ Steve Sabol tells Bengals.com’s Geoff Hobson that the team’s run to the playoffs has “broken the jinx” and that as a result, two NFL owners have approached him about being featured on Hard Knocks next August. Moreover, the 2009 iteration with the Bengals is up for the series’ first-ever Peabody Award.
"“We owe a lot to the Bengals. It’s like breaking the Sports Illustrated jinx,” Sabol said. “They proved you can be the subject of that kind of show and it’s not a distraction, or an obstacle. Now when anyone turns me down, I can just show them what the Bengals did this season.”"
This is in stark contrast to the past. After the 2002 Dallas Cowboys went 5-11 following their appearance on Hard Knocks, the series would find just one taker, Jacksonville in 2004 (9-7), until 2007, when the Kansas City Chiefs did the show, and promptly went 4-12. Dallas appeared on Hard Knocks again in 2008, and ended up missing the playoffs at 9-7.
The Bengals and the 2001 Baltimore Ravens are the only teams to make the playoffs after being featured on Hard Knocks