Tim Kelly’s 2021 season as the offensive coordinator in Houston was a failure. He couldn’t design a competent run game, the empty spread sets he used with Deshaun Watson were put in a box until late in the season when the Texans found themselves down big, and Kelly struggled to adjust to the changes defenses would make in the second half. Kelly was fired with David Culley and has since moved on to Tennessee.
The man in line for a promotion in Houston was quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton. He interviewed for the Giants’ open offensive coordinator position and almost did the same in Carolina for their offensive coordinator position. Hamilton remained on Houston’s staff during their head coach hiring search. With Lovie Smith’s hiring, Hamilton has now been promoted to offensive coordinator. Special teams coordinator Frank Ross will also remain in Houston on Lovie Smith’s staff.
Pep Hamilton promoted to offensive coordinator, retained Frank Ross as special-teams coordinator— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) February 8, 2022
Hamilton lasted three seasons in Indianapolis as their offensive coordinator. He helped Indy to their only AFC Championship Game appearance during the Andrew Luck era. Heavy formations, a power run game, play-action, all of it felt plain compared to the deep passing dare devil offense Bruce Arians ran with Luck his rookie year. Hamilton was fired after the 2015 season when Indy went 8-8 and was replaced with Rod Chudzinski, a name we all haven’t heard in years.
Who knows what a Hamilton offense looks like in 2022? At least there should be a comprehensive set of principles and a set run scheme he can design. Plus Hamilton has experience working with Davis Mills as Houston tries to see if they struck gold in the third round.
The past season, Hamilton garnered a bit of a cult following in Houston as the sickos and sycophants clamored for him to take over as offensive coordinator. Now they get their wish, and we will find out what Pep can accomplish in nine short months.