The Houston Texans organization and fanbase have been starving for a good and consistent head coach since Bill O’Brien was fired during the 2020 season. The Texans hired David Culley in 2021 and was fired shortly after the conclusion of the season. Lovie Smith was hired in 2022 and was fired hours after their last game of the season.
The Texans need someone who can bring consistency and set a new standard for the entire organization. The Texans have begun interviewing several candidates already.
Here is a look at the Houston Texans candidates for their vacant head coaching position:
- Sean Payton (Under Contract With The New Orleans Saints)
- DeMeco Ryans (Current San Francisco 49ers Defensive Coordinator)
- Shane Steichen (Current Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Coordinator)
- Jonathan Gannon (Current Philadelphia Eagles Defensive Coordinator)
- Ejiro Evero (Current Denver Broncos Defensive Coordinator)
- Thomas Brown (Current Los Angeles Rams Assistant Head Coach / Tight Ends Coach)
- Mike Kafka (Current New York Giants Offensive Coordinator)
- Ben Johnson (Detroit Lions Offensive Coordinator)
Houston Texans fans will take one look at this list and a majority of the votes will be for DeMeco Ryans, who is a former second-round pick by Houston in 2006. Ryans is a highly coveted candidate and will not leave the 49ers unless he has a good opportunity. Ryans has accepted an interview with the Texans and that should occur on Thursday or Friday before the 49ers next playoff game, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan.
The other name that will likely get most of the attention is Sean Payton. Payton is currently under contract with the New Orleans Saints and any team that is interested in Payton must trade draft compensation for one of the best coaches in the NFL. The price for Payton is a first-round pick, according to Payton. The Texans completed an interview with Payton through zoom on Monday. Although unlikely, if Payton and the Texans can mutually agree to work something out, the organization would gain instant respect and credibility.
One of the top candidates for the Texans head coaching job is rumored to be Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon. Gannon had extremely positive interviews with the Texans last offseason and made quite an impression.
New York Giants offensive coordinator Mike Kafka and Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen are both amongst the top candidates available and could be under heavy consideration moving forward. Both could transform the Texans offense into something special.
Broncos defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero is a name that many may not know, but is highly respected around the league and could be an interesting hire. Thomas Brown, who is the Los Angeles Rams associate head coach is another name that has been floating around and is highly respected. Many believe he will certainly be a head coach sooner rather than later. Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson announced that he will be staying in Detroit, removing himself from any head coaching opportunities.
Every candidate the Texans have interviewed thus far have been lightyears better than their coaching search last offseason. Texans General Manager Nick Caserio has to get this hire right or his job will certainly be on the line.