HBO’s Hard Knocks serves a very important purpose. From February to August each year NFL fans are forced to scrape by on off season trade news, drama and outright lies. There isn’t much substance there for your average football fan but we engage in it anyway because there’s nothing else. Until HBO’s Hard Knocks hits the air that is.
Hard Knocks follows an NFL team (a different one is chosen each year) as they go through pre-season training. This may sound boring but it’s really anything but. Rookies get cut, stars give it their all and a team comes together before the first big game. You’ll also be watching them on Sunday Night Football late on and you’ll actually recognize them!
There are a few different options for streaming HBO’s Hard Knocks online so let’s get to them.
Watch Hard Knocks Live with Sling Premium
Sling is a cable alternative that doesn’t require much more than $20 a month to get most of your favorite channels. This doesn’t include HBO or Hard Knocks, though and you’ll have to add $15 for HBO to that if you want to watch Hard Knocks live that way.
You can sign up or explore the service more here. There’s a 7-Day free trial so this might be a nice alternative if you want to give it a chance.
Try DirecTV Now for Free and Add HBO for $5
This is actually the cheapest way to get Hard Knocks online that we know of. You subscribe to DirecTV’s new service for about $35 which gives you tons of channels (almost all cable channels you could think of) and then for $5 more you can add HBO. Usually it’s about $15 anywhere else. Give it a shot! There’s a 7-Day free trial so it can’t hurt to give it a try.
UPDATE: DIRECTV NOW is offering a $25 per month discount on the service for anyone who has AT&T Unlimited (AT&T is the parent company of DIRECTV. They’re also throwing in HBO for free which is pretty amazing. This is the best deal in town, folks.
Is Hard Knocks Streaming on Netflix or Hulu?
No. In fact no HBO program is on Netflix or Hulu at the moment. HBO’s Hard Knocks will probably never be on Netflix or Hulu because they’d need to square that deal with both the Home Box Office (a rival of both of those streaming services) as well as the NFL.
Watch Hard Knocks Online with HBO Go or HBO Now
In season’s past HBO and the NFL have not been able to come to terms with how to stream Hard Knocks online. This means that you needed a full cable subscription to watch Hard Knocks. And you couldn’t even live stream on HBO Go! But for the first time ever, in 2015 Hard Knocks will be made available on HBO Now! Here’s what the show’s producer had to say about the subject:
“A lot of people ask ‘do I have to have HBO to watch Hard Knocks,’ and the answer to that question is yes, but there are multiple ways to see the show. We would love for everyone to tune in for the premiere, starting Tuesday night, August 11th at 9:00 PM central. You can also watch on demand at HBO On Demand, or on your mobile device on HBO GO, and for the first time this year you can watch on HBO NOW, which is a streaming on demand service that does not require a cable subscription. There’s many ways to watch, and we hope everybody will.”
This is probably your best bet, then! So head on over to HBO Now and subscribe before the big show. You get a 30 day free trial so if this is the only show you care about, give it a go.
Pirating Hard Knocks
We can’t recommend trying this because most of the HBO live streams are simply bogus. Not only are you bombarded with ads, you’re very likely to catch a virus when trying to pirate the Hard Knocks. All on a tiny screen with no High Definition, fuzzy sound and a sinking feeling in your stomach that you just stole a product you love.
Do yourself a favor and subscribe to HBO Now so that you’ll get the show in glorious HD. It really is the best, free solution for watching Hard Knocks online. No excuses this year, Pirates! It’s available and easy to watch without cable.
Can you hear the theme music in your head? GET IN THE GAME!
UPDATE: If you’re attempting to stream the regular NFL season after Hard Knocks ends we’ve put together a collection of guides that might be helpful for watching games online:
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