The Texans Are Still A Mess

Unreal.

Jim Rome
January 08, 2021 - 9:28 am
Deshaun Watson

USA Today

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It wasn’t that long ago that the Houston Texans were building a bully. They were stacked on defense with guys like Jadeveon Clowney and future Hall of Famer JJ Watt. They had another future Hall of Famer in DeAndre Hopkins. An All-Pro left tackle in Duane Brown. And they’d drafted Deshaun Watson.

Two fierce pass rushers, an elite wide receiver, a stud tackle, and a franchise quarterback. If you’re looking to assemble a roster, that’s the kind of stuff you dream about. Get yourself elite players at all those positions and it’s not a matter of if you win a Super Bowl, but how many you win.

And the Houston Texans have managed to do absolutely none of that. Duane Brown shipped out. Jadeveon Clowney gone. DeAndre Hopkins traded for a couple footballs. And now Deshaun Watson is reportedly pissed at the organization.

And my only question is: what took him so long? This has been a complete bleepshow for years and they’re lucky that he’s such a decent guy, team player, and leader that it hasn’t already reached this point.

Because just about every other person on the planet in his position would’ve demanded a trade months if not years ago.

Remember that somewhat cryptic tweet from earlier this week after reports emerged that Nick Caserio would be the new general manager?

At that time, Watson tweeted: “some things never change….”

And it wasn’t exactly clear what that was about. Now it’s a lot more clear. Because now we know that, according to multiple reports, team owner Cal McNair told Watson he would be involved in the hiring process for the general manager and head coach.

And then they went out and hired Caserio without informing Watson. Not only did they not inform him, he reportedly found out about Caserio being hired from Twitter.

I’m not going to say that’s a dumb way of handling things, I’m going to say that’s a moronic way of handling things. Just truly asinine.

And there are layers to this tiramisu of stupidity from the Texans ownership. Let me read a few lines from a Jason La Canfora report from October.

Specifically, owner Cal McNair has already talked to starting quarterback Deshaun Watson about the direction of the team going forward and solicited his opinion, according to sources with knowledge of the situation. While Watson will not be a formal part of the team that chooses the next coach -- and McNair intends to hire the GM first -- the owner does value very much the feedback of his highest-paid player, and sources said Watson has already advocated for Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy.

Sounds like a good plan. The owner wants to get a take from his franchise player as part of the process of determining the next head coach. And then the player stumps for one coach in particular and it just so happens that coach is the guy who’s one of the hottest coordinators in football, the guy who won a Super Bowl last year and is primed to win another. The guy who’s helped mold Patrick Mahomes.

In any functional, well run organization, with competent ownership, I wouldn’t say it’s a slam dunk that Bienemy gets the job, but he’d have to be at the top of your list and then go up another level when your star quarterback says that’s the guy he wants.

But not in Houston. Because not only is Eric Bieniemy not poised to get the job right now, he didn’t even get an interview.

Let me repeat that: according to reports, the Houston Texans have not interviewed Eric Bieniemy for their head coaching position. That isn’t just dumb, that’s criminally stupid. He should have been on your list from the beginning and should be underlined after Watson says that’s the guy he likes. 

And these clowns don’t even interview him? Not only did the Texans not interview Eric Bieniemy, they are the ONLY team with an opening to not interview Eric Bieniemy. At this point, you have to go out of your way to not interview Eric Bieniemy.

And when you do that, you’re going out of your way to offend your franchise quarterback. For who? For what? Why would you do that?

Even if you don’t want Bieniemy as your head coach, fire up Zoom and interview the guy. What does it cost you? A couple hours at most. And you keep your franchise quarterback feeling like you give a damn about him.

But instead, you don’t interview Bieniemy and essentially give Watson the middle finger. No wonder he’s pissed. If I were him, I’d be screaming my trade demand from the rooftops.

Actually, I’d have been screaming it months ago when they didn’t tell me they’d be trading DeAndre Hopkins. And I’ll be spray painting it all over H-Town today after the coaching search debacle.

And when it came to the hiring of Nick Caserio, according to Adam Schefter: “Watson offered input on potential general manager candidates, but the Texans neither considered nor consulted with those endorsed by their franchise quarterback.”

Didn’t even consider the advice he gave them. Awesome job, fellas. Really top notch work.

Oh, and it wasn’t just that they met once or Watson just referenced his thoughts in passing. According to Adam Schefter, Watson met with Cal McNair multiple times. He didn’t expect to be the one making the hiring decisions, but hoped that he could represent the thoughts of himself and other players.

And they just ignored him. What a waste of Watson’s time. Kind of like everything he’s done in Houston since he got there – because a guy this good should be having way more team success than he is. Instead guys like Watson and JJ Watt are just spinning their wheels, wasting prime years of their hall of fame careers, while the rest of the organization is a complete mess.  

It’s Cal McNair’s team. He can make whatever decisions he wants. I’m not even saying that he has to consult with Watson on any of this. I would say it is smart to make sure your QB is on the same page and feels like his opinion is valued, but you can do what you want.

What you can’t do is tell him that his opinion matters and he’ll have input, and then completely ignore him at every step of the way. Allegedly.

If that really is how it went down, that’s self-destruction of the highest order.

To recap: the team has consistently dealt away premium talent for pennies on the dollar because the previous head coach slash GM liked to do that kind of thing. They tell the franchise quarterback that they want his input in the hiring of a new general manager and head coach, and then they completely ignore his input.

Not only do they ignore it, they go out of their way to disrespect it and make decisions on their own. And then don’t communicate with him about the decisions that they have made.

If you were setting out to piss off the best quarterback in franchise history and create an environment where you have to trade him, you could not have done a better job. You might as well just dare him to demand a trade and force his way out of town.

And by the way, what a cool spot this is for Nick Caserio to walk into now. Through no fault of Caserio’s, the star quarterback is now pissed and Caserio has to solve a serious problem that he didn’t create.

By all accounts, Cal McNair tossed Caserio the keys to a Ferrari, but made sure to set it on fire before he did. Really sharp business strategy there.  

The whole point of firing Bill O’Brien was that you could get a clean start, a full reset. And instead, they somehow made it worse. And given what a disaster BOB was, that takes work. That takes a ton of work.  Well done; now just give Deshaun Watson and J.J. Watt away and just be done with it.