Pull on your fan gear and your foam fingers... because football therapy is back in session!
Necessary Roughness returns for season two next week and picks right up after the dramatic TK shooting, as the show delves deeper into the characters' personal lives, while also dealing with the football off-season, and of course, Dr. Dani's sessions with a variety of other athletes.
After visiting the spacious set in Atlanta, GA (a football training facility, Dr. Dani's two story house and TK's apartment) and checking out the season two premiere episode, I had the chance to sit down with some of the show's stars and producers to discuss what's in store for this USA series.
Executive Producer Kevin Dowling was the first to spill on the new season's fine tuning, saying:
"I think it’s a pretty big decision to focus more on our team, on the Hawks family. I mean, there’s always been this parallel theme of Dani’s nuclear family and how it gets affected by taking on this new family and the fact that there are pressures that put all kinds of demands on the original family and what does that mean? But we only sort of cursorily got into what happens behind the scenes [in season one]."
Which means that other members of the Hawks team will get their chance to receive some of Dr. Dani's help.
"We are filming right now a linebacker with a weight problem and trying to deal with all of what that means, how it affects his relationship." Dowling added. "We’ll definitely expand with the Hawks, there’s quite a bit more coaches around, quite a bit more on how Matt [Donnally] will work his way up in the Hawks role."
And while Matt and Dani's relationship might involve "some strangeness" as they cozy up via a secret romance, viewers can also look for TK to return to his old neighborhood and for Nico's allegiances to get called into question, especially in dealing with the mysterious Marshall Pittman.
"When [Nico] promises her in the pilot that he’ll take care of Dani’s problems and not to worry and then you see it play out and she doesn’t even know how he did it but he gets rid of the P.I., that’s pretty much their relationship for a while." Dowling said. "But eventually that also is going to morph and get a little more complicated."
Of course, even with all of the football focus, the new season manages to explore a variety of sports that will include roller derby, bull riding and potentially even a spelling bee.
The EP even dished on guest stars, such as the return of Terrell Owens, implying that he and Mehcad Brooks, who plays TK, have a little food fight, as well as the introduction of Friday Night Lights Alum, Gaius Charles, to the Hawks team.
Dowling also remarked excitedly: "We meet Pittman finally and he’s a surprise I think."
But with all the fun asides and directions, the heart of the show remains those core characters and what challenges might face them down the road.
"We’ve tried to keep it based on reality and based on stories that we know but also weave that into the fictional Hawks family in our sort of story," Dowling said.
Necessary Roughness returns for some football fun at 10/9c on USA Network, Wednesday, June 6.
Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.