Last night, Aaron Wilson reported that, despite all the weeping and gnashing of teeth about the Texans interviewing Josh McCown for their head coaching position, Leslie Frazier “is expected to receive a second interview for the Texans [job] after [today’s AFC Championship] game.” Wilson also said Eric Bieniemy “made a strong impression while communicating his vision” in his initial interview earlier this week and is “under consideration for a second meeting [with the Texans].”
This morning, Adam Schefter expanded on Wilson’s work:
Both candidates believe they have a legitimate chance to land the Texans’ head-coaching job and have begun assembling a coaching staff in the event that they are hired, sources said.
Schefter noted that when Bieniemy’s Chiefs offense squares off against Frazier’s Bills defense in the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium this evening, the loser of that match-up could find himself in the driver’s seat for the opening in Houston.
As Houston’s head-coaching search ramps up, the winning coordinator from Sunday’s game could be the loser in the Texans’ search, as they would have to wait to hire him. The Texans could act quicker with the coordinator from the losing team.
While it’s clear an overwhelming majority of the Texans’ fan base would prefer Bieniemy for many reasons—with the biggest being that it seems the surest path to making Deshaun Watson happy and perhaps ending the exhausting speculation about whether he’ll demand a trade—there’s a lot of smoke about a Frazier hire. In fact, I would probably go so far as to label Leslie Frazier the favorite right now. Houston’s refusal to allow Tim Kelly to interview for other offensive coordinator openings is a curious move that makes some sense if the Texans were leaning toward hiring a defensive-minded head coach; perhaps they believe they could satisfy Watson by keeping the offensive coordinator he championed if they don’t go with his choice as head coach.
I imagine Texans fans, rightfully frustrated as they are by the organization’s horrendous and farcical decision-making process this offseason, will initially be furious if the Texans pass on Bieniemy in favor of Frazier. But if Frazier kept Kelly as his OC and Watson then publicly said he was committed to staying in Houston, that fury would dissipate to a large degree. Should such a pledge from Watson not materialize in the wake of a Frazier hire, however, discontentment with the ongoing bumbling manner in which the Texans operate would only increase exponentially.
No pressure, Nick Caserio. This is why Cal McNair pays you the big bucks.
UPDATE: With the Bills’ loss to the Chiefs last night, Leslie Frazier (and David Culley) will have a second interview with the Texans in short order.