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Wade Phillips: Defensive Backs Coach Vance Joseph Will Call Plays; So Will Rick Dennison

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Gary Kubiak's gone, and Wade Phillips has been elevated to head coach for the remainder of the 2013 season. Wade is now making some changes of his own as it pertains to who'll be calling the plays on Sunday for the Texans' offense and defense.

Your new defensive coordinator, Texans fans.
Your new defensive coordinator, Texans fans.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Wade Phillips is overseeing the entire Houston Texans roster now, which means he probably shouldn't be focused on calling the defense during the games anymore. To that end, Drew Dougherty reports that Wade has disclosed who will be calling the plays when the Texans travel to Indianapolis to play the Colts on Sunday.

Defensive backs coach Vance Joseph will call the plays on defense. But Phillips will continue to have an input on the defensive play-calling. The interim head coach explained one of Joseph's strengths.

"He's very detailed," Phillips said about Joseph. "The players will know what they're supposed to do."

Joseph has coached the secondary since 2011, and while this will be the first time he's actually called the plays, Phillips said Joseph's always been involved.

"He always has input," Phillips said. "All of them have input, certainly. He’s going to call the same things I’m going to call overall. Again, I can override anything."

Phillips also discussed how the offensive play calls will be made, since former head coach Gary Kubiak had a major role in that area. Quarterbacks coach Karl Dorrell is a factor, too.

"The play-calling will go Rick, through Karl," Phillips said. "Karl will also have some input as far as more of the passing game than the running game. Of course, Karl’s in constant communication with the quarterback when the quarterback’s out of the game and obviously when he’s in the game, really."

Vance Joseph calling the defense is a logical move. On balance (though this year isn't exactly a ringing endorsement of anyone on the coaching staff), Joseph has done a good job with the secondary during his three years in Houston. His tutelage turned Kareem Jackson into a legitimate NFL cornerback, which is something no one thought possible in 2010. V-Jo even made Brice McCain look like the best nickel corner in the NFL in 2011, an accomplishment on par with cold fusion, given what we've seen from McCain every other season of his professional career. Vance Joseph should get the opportunity to call a defense; defensive coordinator is the next step for him, even though it seems rather unlikely it happens in Houston after this season ends.

In terms of the offense, Gary Kubiak's dismissal as head coach served as a joint firing of the Texans' offensive coordinator, so my reaction to Rick Dennison (Kubiak's faux offensive coordinator) being elevated to actual offensive coordinator is best summarized by the following timeless clip:

I like to think Rick Dennison plays a mean violin. "Nearer, My God, To Thee" indeed. Women and Ben Tate first, Dennison.

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