The Houston Texans are generating a lot of interest from fans and media alike. Sean Pendergast has been a mainstay in Houston radio for more than a decade. Pendergast has appeared up and down the dial, but has landed at the flagship station for the Texans KILT Sports Radio 610 AM. He and his cohost Seth Payne work the 6 to 10 AM slot where they frequently get a one-on-one conversation with general manager Nick Caserio.
Pendergast is very busy these days. In addition to his morning show on 610, you can also find him on Sunday’s from one to five PM on CBS Radio. He also joins John McClain twice a week on the “Houtopia Football Podcast” as well as regular features in the HoustonPress.com. These can all be found on the Audacy app. You can follow Sean on twitter at @Sean1Pendergast and on Instagram at @sean.pendergast.
Just like with the other local personalities, we began by looking back at the recent DeMeco Ryans hire to hear his take on the decision and then moved onto the draft, free agency, and the outlook on Nick Caserio.
Battle Red Blog: What are your thoughts on the DeMeco Ryans hire? What style of play can Texans fans expect from him moving forward?
Sean Pendergast: I think the hire is an A, and that grade has nothing to do with DeMeco’s history with the organization and the city. Purely from a coaching standpoint, it’s quite evident that Ryans is a rising star, and someone who’s been pegged for this by his peers for a long time now. Add in, though, what he means to this organization and city, and it’s an A+. He’s immediately reinvigorated the fan base, and reengaged the Texans “alum”. I think stylistically, it will be a more aggressive version of defense than we’ve seen in recent seasons, and most importantly, I think he will do light years better at putting guys (ahem, STINGLEY) in position to accentuate their strengths. It will be fun!
BRB: If it were you making the call, are you definitely going QB at number two? Assuming they are all on the board which one would you take? Assuming your favorite is taken at number one, who is your second choice?
SP: With the caveat that things CAN change between now and the draft, right NOW, I would say absolutely QB with the first pick. For me, it’s Bryce Young, and I’ve been steadfast in that since the beginning of the 2022 CFB season. Other than his slight build, I love everything about him. Particularly, I love his leadership skills and I think his personality builds on the “hope momentum” we are already feeling from the Ryans hire. I’d take Stroud with the number two pick if I had to, and feel decent about that.
BRB: Free agency is coming fairly soon. Which positions do you see them targeting? Are there any names off the bat that intrigue you?
SP: I’d like to see them spend money on the interior of both lines. On offense, I’d love to see them bring in a veteran center who can help steady Kenyon Green and who might fit what Bobby Slowik wants to do offensively; Connor McGovern of the New York Jets comes to mind. On defense, an ass-kicker on the interior would be awesome. If they’re going to splurge, swing for Javon Hargrave or Daron Payne. I wouldn’t mind a veteran safety to put alongside Jalen Pitre. Also, if they can get a high level veteran running back for 60 cents on the dollar, I think that’d be great, too. They pretty much need everything.
BRB: Nick Caserio has come under some fire for some of the questionable decisions that have been made in the last two years. How much are you putting on him vs. others within the organization? How much rope are you giving him from this point forward?
SP: Nick definitely hasn’t been perfect. To wit, the Brandin Cooks extension, the Shaq Lawson trade (and restructure), and until I see reason for otherwise, the Stingley and Green picks in the first round in 2022 deserve intense scrutiny. That said, I can’t think of a GM who inherited a worse situation, and that’s BEFORE Deshaun Watson asked for a trade, and BEFORE Watson was sued by 24 women. (Is that the number? I lost track at 22.) Obviously, if things go sour over the next two seasons, Caserio will be gone and Ryans will be working with a new GM. But I blame a lot of where we are right now on the damage Bill O’Brien and Jack Easterby did to the roster and the organization. They did a number on the Texans.
BRB: The Jaguars went from last to first. Can you envision any scenario where that happens in Houston? If not, what do you see as the ceiling for the 2023 Texans?
SP: I think it’s possible. First, if DeMeco gets the defense somewhere between 10th and 15th in the league in DVOA (they were 22nd in 2022) it could be huge. Secondly, if the QB they draft is a quick study and can hang around the middle of the pack his rookie season. Third, Jacksonville’s last two months were more of a mirage than reality. 9-8 won the division last season, and I totally see that being the case again. More likely, I think the Texans are a six win team next season, but a much more competent and competitive outfit than the last two years.
We want to thank Sean again for the opportunity to sit down with him and ask a few questions. Always remember, if you are night owl and find 6 AM too early to get up, the Audacy app will allow you to go back and listen to every minute of Payne and Pendergast Show at your own leisure. Plus, you can check him out at his other stops as well.