For those not paying attention, the Houston Texans win yesterday against the Baby Horses of Indianapolis, that pushed them out of the #1 draft pick slot, was one of the most Texans things ever.
This team can’t even lose right...
If you’re a national level NFL fan watching the Houston Texans from afar, you’re likely shocked out how they continually screw things up. If you’re a Texans fan, you know.
You just know...
Houston Texans Fire Head Coach Lovie Smith After 1 Season
What are the Texans doing. What kind of operation is this where you don’t have any convictions about supporting the coaches you hire. Who is going to want to coach there if you might only get one year to implement your plans. Two years in a row is ridiculous. https://t.co/Lrn6jyVs7P— Tony Dungy (@TonyDungy) January 9, 2023
Of course Tony Dungy is going to be upset with this, Lovie Smith is one of his proteges. Dungy is also not intimately familiar with the inner workings of the Texans... or how to complete a battle pass on Fortnite when Cal McNair really wants that new Peely skin.
Despite the (
fake?) shock and disbelief to the contrary, Lovie Smith very well may have operated under a Tankathon edict for the 2022 season. That meant he was never more than a placeholder/seat warmer for the next Houston Texans head coach. Let’s get real, neither David Culley nor Lovie Smith was a serious consideration for ANY NFL team’s head coaching position prior to McNair hiring them...
And, when Smith realized the writing was on the wall skidding into the final week of the 2022 NFL season, he decided to show the world he could win a game. Maybe.
This is, of course, purely speculation.
And, it’s not like all the games in the 2022 season were winnable affairs. However, there’s a decent likelihood this team, if coached better, could have been middle of the pack, maybe going 7-10 or 8-9. Of course, that outcome would have done nothing for rebuilding a team in desperate need of star talent at the QB and EDGE positions. So, wink-wink, nod-nod, let’s “win”.
Lovie Smith’s Houston Texans Can’t Even Lose Right
Thanks to Smith’s inability to lose yesterday, the Chicago Bears hold the #1 overall draft pick in 2023. If Chicago decides to keep the pick, Alabama Crimson Tide EDGE Will Anderson Jr makes a lot of sense for them, at which point the Texans still have their choice of rookie quarterbacks.
Where it gets dicey is the trade market. A team like say, the Indianapolis Colts or Las Vegas Raiders (now in need a QB), could pull a trade with the Bears and select the signal caller the Texans want. If the Baby Horses do, Houston has to face that QB twice a year for the next several years to several decades...
Now, don’t take this wrong, Smith seems like an absolutely great guy who was effectively set up to fail in 2022. He’s a wealth of NFL knowledge and is likely a fantastic friend, neighbor and family member. We wish him all the best in the future.
We’ll likely never know the true circumstances around Smith’s hiring, but with the smoke of the Brian Flores lawsuit, the Rooney Rule and all the other dumpster fire nonsense at NRG, he may have been told up front he likely wasn't making it past 1 season.
Either way, winning yesterday’s game was more salt in the gaping wounds for a franchise bleeding out from far too many self-inflicted injuries.
At one stage in the 4th quarter, the Colts were in the lead. All Smith had to do was pull the goalie, just as he’s done multiple times this season. But, no...
The Next Houston Texans Head Coach
There was speculation yesterday that Texans general manager Nick Caserio was also on the hot seat. Thankfully he kept his job, since Cal McNair is anything but an NFL-talent-hiring-genius.
Despite the rocky start, 2023 is really the 1st year Caserio will have a chance to prove himself. He’s no longer saddled with the Jack Easterby / Bill O’Brien created disaster of bad contracts, terrible culture and lack of cap/draft resources. Caserio can actually hire the head coach of the future and fully shift to a respectable, winning program starting today.
Texans chairman and CEO Cal McNair and general manager Nick Caserio will hold a press conference at 5:30 p.m. Central on Monday in the wake of firing coach Lovie Smith after one season, a 3-13-1 finish.— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) January 9, 2023
All the indignation and faux shock aside, the Texans head coaching gig is actually more attractive than many people might make it out to be based on recent events.
Now, a new coach coming in would be wise to negotiate a deal that gives him a bare minimum 2 seasons to make a difference, if not longer. However, the team is well poised for future success with the right coaching staff in place and some solid draft picks and free agent signings.
#Texans have had, including Bill O'Brien, interim coach Romeo Crennel, David Culley and Lovie Smith four head coaches in past three seasons. Now, they'll be onto another in this hiring cycle. Attractive job with No. 2 pick, $47 million in cap room and some talent on the roster— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) January 9, 2023
With talented young players like running back Dameon Pierce, safety Jalen Pitre and others, there is something of a core roster to build on. It’s thin at the moment, but wouldn’t take much to solidify.
If Caserio can land the right head coach who shares his vision, the team could turn around quickly. Having a head coach and GM on the same page, seeing the same things, working as a partnership, is very powerful.
If Caserio buys into the new coach’s system, and knows how to bring the right players so that system can flourish, the Texans could indeed take the AFC South crown again next season. Let’s face it, the Cy-Fair Bobcats might have a shot in a division that only achieved a 23-43-2 record in 2022... for those keeping track at home, 11 of the 23 wins came against division opponents. Which means the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, Colts and Texans combined for only 12 wins outside the division this season. Pathetic thy name is AFC South
In this AM's Black Monday primer (https://t.co/CA21mb5VXp), we laid out potential @HoustonTexans candidates. One strong one: Eagles DC Jonathan Gannon. He and Nick Caserio have NE Ohio ties, know each other through mutual buddy Josh McDaniels.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) January 9, 2023
Gannon interviewed there last year.
Along with Gannon, Caserio also had his eye on current Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell, who took his team to a 13-4 record in 2022. So, it’s a good bet Caserio knows a talented head coaching candidate when he sees one.
Now, if he can land that coach, we won't have to suffer through Tankathon 2023...