Many, many fans of the Houston Texans have been clamoring for Bill O’Brien to hire an offensive coordinator. According to Alex Marvez and Aaron Wilson, that wish has been granted.
Source tells me Tim Kelly is being promoted to become new @HoustonTexans offensive coordinator & Will Lawing is being promoted from offensive assistant/offensive line to TEs coach replacing Kelly— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) February 2, 2019
Texans are expected to promote tight ends coach Tim Kelly to offensive coordinator and offensive assistant-assistant offensive line coach Will Lawing to tight ends coach, sources confirm. First reported by @alexmarvez Bill O'Brien praised Kelly repeatedly all season.— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) February 2, 2019
While this doesn’t necessarily mean O’Brien won’t call plays next season (e.g., in theory, O’Brien could still call the plays, and Kelly could be an offensive coordinator in title only or focus on other aspects of the scheme), it seems reasonable to assume that Tim Kelly will be in charge of Houston’s offense in 2019, with O’Brien focusing on oversight instead of making the specific calls each offensive snap.
When the Texans hired O’Brien to be their head coach back in 2014, recall that O’Brien initially decided to go without an offensive coordinator. After that first season in charge, O’Brien promoted George Godsey to offensive coordinator in 2015 before the Texans and Godsey “mutually agreed to part ways” about two years ago. Since that time (in other words, the 2017 and 2018 season), O’Brien has served as the Texans’ offensive coordinator with mixed results.
I’d say most Texans fans were impressed with how explosive the offense looked in 2017 once Deshaun Watson took over under center; that offense then looked putrid once DW4 was lost to a season-ending injury. Of course, it’s not fair to hang all that stink on O’Brien, as the drop and change in skill sets from Deshaun Watson to Tom Savage is not a small one.
Despite Watson playing a full season in 2018, it’s fair to say that the Texans’ offense did not frequently resemble the unit that set the league on fire for the first half of the 2018 season. We can debate how much of that was due to a porous offensive line, or Will Fuller’s season-ending injury, or curious play-calling, and so on.
It appears now, however, that someone else besides Bill O’Brien will be in charge of the Texans’ offense. How do you feel about that? How about the promotion of Tim Kelly (who was with O’Brien at Penn State and served as assistant offensive line coach and offensive quality control coach in Houston before becoming the tight ends coach in 2017) to the position? The floor is yours.