This offseason, Romeo Crennel left the Texans’ sideline (or press box) for a the special assistant job in the sky, that place where all defensive coordinators eventually go once they reach a certain age. Anthony Weaver took over as the Texans’ defensive coordinator. This sort of swap happened once before when Mike Vrabel was named DC for a year before he left to become the head coach in Tennessee. That year, a new voice calling the defense was a net negative, as the Texans’ defense went from 11th to 32nd in points allowed and from 9th to 23rd in defensive DVOA.
Now it’s Weaver’s turn to take over Crennel’s job and have his go at it. We learned yesterday, when Weaver met with the Houston media for the first time since he was promoted to defensive coordinator, that Weaver’s ascension means changes to the Texans’ defense. You can watch the entire interview here.
In the linked interview, Weaver discusses being more aggressive, becoming more exotic to get to the quarterback, how he believes Lonnie Johnson Jr. is a cornerback, and how important it is for J.J. Watt to play 16 games in 2020.
If you don’t want to watch the whole interview, you can check out some highlights below thanks to Rivers McCown.
DC Anthony Weaver on D: "I envision our defense being representative of our city ... We want a defense that plays with passion ... you gotta be Texans tough ... and then you gotta be resilient ... Whether or not we're gonna be aggressive? We're gonna do whatever it takes to win." pic.twitter.com/GyeEvbdFsE— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) May 13, 2020
Weaver on Greenard: "Position flexibility, particularly in the defense we're trying to institute, adds a tremendous amount of value. He's a guy that can rush off the edge, rush inside, drop into coverage ... when you can wear that many hats that poses a lot of potential problems" pic.twitter.com/VJuSd1HEMx— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) May 13, 2020
Weaver: "The creativity part of defensive scheming is one of my favorite parts about the job ... trying to put the pieces in the right place and get free runners and hit the quarterback ... some of the schematic changes that we've made have brought on some excitement for them." pic.twitter.com/s7bf6dD3Kl— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) May 13, 2020
Weaver on improving on third downs: "We have all the pieces to be more successful on third down ... schematically, we'll probably be a little more exotic ... so that offenses can't pinpoint exactly where players are going to be." pic.twitter.com/gZQ3PTYK5l— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) May 13, 2020
Weaver: "J.J. playing the full 16-plus is obviously critical for our defense ... I think Lonnie's a corner. He has press ability, he has length, he has speed ... I expect him to take a jump here in year two." pic.twitter.com/Adg04akCxP— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) May 13, 2020
Thoughts on what Weaver had to say about the Texans’ defense going forward?