The Houston Texans’ analytics department is now considerably deeper than it was when the offseason began. Russell Joyner is (and has been) the Director of Football Information Systems. Weller Ross is (and has been) the Assistant Director of Football Information Systems For Analytics. Ross, of course, was the man who once wrote a groundbreaking paper that said going for it on fourth down is good. The Texans went for it on fourth down more last season. What do you know? Analytical statements written twelve years ago work.
Bill O’Brien/Tim Kelly rank 3rd most aggressive on 4th down. Texans Analytics coordinator Weller Ross’ thesis was titled “An Examination of Decision-Making Biases on Fourth Down in The National Football League” https://t.co/8xCvtMgz0c— Seth C. Payne (@SethCPayne) December 20, 2019
Now the Texans have doubled the size of their analytics department. This weekend, it was announced the Texans hired Curtis Goodwin as a performance data specialist.
Texans hired Curtis Goodwin as a performance data specialist. He is a former mathematics chair and assistant basketball coach at Boswell High School in Fort Worth— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) May 31, 2020
Earlier this offseason, Houston hired Kevin Clark as a Football Data & Applications Engineer.
The Texans also hired Kevin Clark as a Football Data and Applications Engineer, per source.— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) May 31, 2020
Clark previously was the Research & Data Development Data Engineer for the Arizona Coyotes.
Houston’s analytics department has doubled from two to four employees. Hopefully this leads to continued football innovations, like recognition that establishing the run is a myth, throwing the football is more efficient than running it, and basing performance solely on win-loss record can lead to an overestimation (or an underestimation) of a team’s true talent level. It would be great to see the Texans continue to expand upon this focus on data.
Analytics work. Continued investment into this side of the game will only make the Houston football team a better organization.