If you were to poll Houston Texans fans, a overwhelming majority would overwhelmingly support the club hiring former star linebacker DeMeco Ryans as the next head coach. The 49ers defensive coordinator has already interviewed with the Texans. He cannot have a second interview until after the NFC Championship game on Sunday. Yet, there is already reporting out there that he has emerged as the favorite.
NFL.com is reporting that the two could be moving towards a deal. Ian Rappaport was also reporting that the two sides could reach an agreement as early as next week. Tom Pelissero was also mentioned in that report from Ian Rappaport. Obviously, getting Ryans would be a huge public relations victory for the Texans on a number of fronts.
#49ers DC DeMeco Ryans has emerged as a top candidate for the #Texans, sources tell me and @TomPelissero. He’s expected to meet with Houston at some point next week after the game. There is mutual interest and if all goes well, he could be their next head coach. pic.twitter.com/Wj2htQYEd1— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 27, 2023
Naturally, we have to tap the brakes some before we see this train reach the station. In a more recent report, Rappaport also said that the Denver Broncos are still very much in on Ryans. They also interviewed him last week, so they will also have an opportunity to schedule a second interview after the NFC Championship game.
With the #Texans eying DeMeco Ryans and his desire to interview with Houston next week, that may not align with #Broncos timeline despite DEN thinking highly of Ryans. GM George Paton and CEO Greg Penner have continued conversations with other candidates throughout the process.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 27, 2023
So, it could become a race between two AFC rivals to see who ends up with Ryans. Either one could have an inside track depending on what Ryans values the most. The Broncos have a higher rated defense and Russell Wilson. The Texans have the second overall pick, a second first rounder, and obviously a previous relationship with Ryans. Either way, things could be winding down on the head coaching search.