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#pounditFriday, January 28, 2022

Articles tagged: Houston Texans

David Culley fired as Texans head coach

David Culley

David Culley was not really given a fair shot in Houston this season, but that will be the only shot the head coach gets with the Texans.

Culley was fired by the Texans on Thursday, Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo of NFL Media report.

Houston finished 4-13 this season, but Culley never stood a chance with the way the roster was constructed. The 66-year-old was hired amid the Deshaun Watson sexual assault allegation scandal and serious organizational dysfunction. Many suspected he would serve as a bridge coach, which is exactly what ended up happening.

Former New England Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio was hired as the general manager of the Texans last year. Brian Flores, who was recently fired by the Miami Dolphins, and Josh McDaniels will be two potential candidates to watch for the Texans head coach job. Flores was a former defensive coordinator under Bill Belichick, and McDaniels is the offensive coordinator in New England.

Culley had been an assistant coach in the NFL since 1994 before the Texans hired him. He will likely have no trouble finding another job in the league, even if it is not as a head coach.

Photo: Sep 12, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans head coach David Culley waves while walking off the field after the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Texans reportedly make major decision on David Culley

David Culley

Rumors have persisted that David Culley might be a one-and-done head coach with the Houston Texans. The organization, however, appears to feel otherwise.

The Texans plan to bring back Culley for a second season as head coach, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic. That decision is expected to be finalized prior to the team’s final game of the season.

Culley took over an incredibly difficult situation in Houston. The Texans dropped to 4-12 on Sunday after a loss to the San Francisco 49ers, but not much of that can be pinned on the 66-year-old head coach. The roster is simply devoid of talent, particularly after quarterback Deshaun Watson was essentially benched following an offseason trade demand and multiple sexual misconduct allegations. Culley has apparently won the respect of those within the organizations for how he has managed such a miserable situation.

The Texans have been historically awful throughout the season. There probably isn’t a coach in the league right now that could have salvaged much of anything from this season, and Houston’s management appears to know that.

Photo: Sep 12, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans head coach David Culley waves while walking off the field after the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Look: Simone Biles was at Texans game for boyfriend Jonathan Owens’ INT

Simone Biles celebrates Jonathan Owens' interception

Houston Texans safety Jonathan Owens recorded the first interception of his career on Sunday, and his girlfriend Simone Biles was in attendance to see it live.

Owens intercepted a Justin Herbert pass late in the second quarter of Houston’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers. Biles, who has been dating Owens for over a year, was shown in the stands at NRG Stadium celebrating the big play.

You can see the interception below:

Owens was elevated from Houston’s practice squad earlier this month. He made his first NFL start against the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, and Biles supported him then as well.

Biles, 24, is a four-time Olympic gold medalist. She entered the 2020 Summer Olympics as the favorite to win gold medals in multiple gymnastics events, just as she had done at the 2016 Olympics in Rio. Instead, she ended up with two medals, and withdrawing from four competitions, citing mental health issues.

Texans have now achieved embarrassing Triple Crown of futility

David Culley

Congratulations are in order for the Houston Texans for achieving a level of atrociousness that few in the sports world ever have.

The Texans were officially eliminated from playoff contention on Sunday with a blowout 31-0 loss to the Indianapolis Colts at home. It was an ugly showing all around, especially from the offense. Quarterback Tyrod Taylor got benched in the third quarter, Brandin Cooks was the only Houston wide receiver with a catch (recording a whopping three of them), and the team averaged a dismal 2.8 yards per play overall.

John McClain of the Houston Chronicle shared that the Texans now found themselves ranked 32nd in the league in rushing, 32nd in passing, and 32nd in total offense after the game. The reverse Triple Crown!

The Texans entered the week already ranked 32nd in both rushing and total offense. They were holding strong though at 31st in passing over the Chicago Bears. But the Bears produced 229 yards through the air on Sunday to overtake the Texans, who managed just 94 in their game.

It has been the season from hell for Houston. At 2-10, the Texans are now just barely ahead of the 1-10-1 Detroit Lions for the worst record in the NFL. On the bright side though, head coach David Culley probably doesn’t care about any of their embarrassing statistics.

Photo: Sep 12, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans head coach David Culley waves while walking off the field after the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Driskel making surprising position change for Texans

Jeff Driskel at training camp

The Houston Texans appear to be going full galaxy brain mode.

The team revealed on Thursday that backup quarterback Jeff Driskel will be moving over to the tight end position, per Brooks Kubena of the Houston Chronicle. Texans position coach Andy Bischoff added that Driskel’s speed and size should help him make the change, which could lengthen his career.

The former University of Florida star Driskel checks in at 6-foot-4 and 238 pounds. He was known as a versatile athlete in college and even got drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 2013 MLB Draft. Driskel has made nine career starts at the quarterback position, but none have come with the Texans.

The 1-8 Texans no longer need the depth at QB now that Tyrod Taylor has returned from injury. But their tight end spot is a bit of a mess, as Jordan Akins leads the position with 21 catches for 184 yards and zero touchdowns.

Still, this is a pretty unexpected change for the 28-year-old Driskel. The transition from quarterback to tight end is a rare one, though we have seen one well-known player attempt it at the NFL level.

Photo: Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Jeff Driskel (6) points during Bengals training camp on Aug. 6, 2019, in Cincinnati. Mandatory Credit: Albert Cesare / The Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Deshaun Watson not traded to Dolphins due to lack of ‘contingencies’

Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson is going to remain with the Houston Texans through at least the end of the season. Not surprisingly, the star quarterback’s impending legal situation was reportedly the main reason he was not traded ahead of Tuesday’s deadline.

The Miami Dolphins were always viewed as the most logical suitor for Watson. They discussed a potential deal with the Texans, but ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the two sides were not able to come to an agreement. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross ultimately decided not to acquire Watson after certain “contingencies” were not met.

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, Ross was only given permission to speak with Watson about a trade last night. That made it even more difficult to work out a deal.

Watson is facing sexual assault allegations from multiple women. Some of them have filed complaints with the police, but prosecutors have not yet determined if he will face charges. Despite that, the Texans were still asking for a massive haul in return for Watson. Teams like the Dolphins likely wanted some sort of assurance that they could recoup some draft capital if Watson winds up being charged. It’s no surprise the Texans were not interested in that type of agreement.

The Texans appear to have moved on from Watson, but they will now have to wait until the offseason to trade him.

Report: Only one team in play for Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson

The Houston Texans are open to moving Deshaun Watson ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline, but it does not sound like they will be able to create any type of bidding war for the star quarterback.

The Miami Dolphins are the only team with an actual shot at landing Watson in a trade, Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported on Sunday. Watson is only willing to waive his no-trade clause for Miami, and the two teams have continued to discuss a potential deal.

Rapoport notes that there is “some urgency” on both sides to complete a trade, but the discussions are complicated for obvious reasons. Watson is facing sexual assault allegations from multiple women. He has not been placed on the Commissioner’s Exempt List, and that is unlikely to change even if he’s traded. However, his legal situation remains unresolved.

A report this week claimed another team made a massive offer for Watson. That team has since denied pursuing Watson. Again, the the quarterback is reportedly unwilling to waive his no-trade clause for any team other than the Dolphins.

If Watson is traded before Tuesday, it will almost certainly be to Miami. Otherwise, the Texans will likely have to revisit the talks during the offseason.

Panthers willing to trade huge piece for Deshaun Watson?

Deshaun Watson in the rain

The Carolina Panthers remain in hot pursuit of Deshaun Watson, and may be willing to go to substantial lengths to entice the Houston Texans to make a deal.

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, the Panthers have made acquiring Watson a priority ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline. Carolina is so eager to acquire the quarterback that they have reportedly offered running back Christian McCaffrey and three high draft picks to the Texans. Houston continues to hold out for three first-round selections, however, and would prefer younger, less expensive pieces than McCaffrey.

It wasn’t long ago that McCaffrey was seen as one of the most valuable offensive pieces in the NFL, and he’s still only 25. After playing three games last year, combined with another IR stint in 2021, Carolina might be ready to cut bait. He’s also headed into the first year of a contract extension that will make him the highest-paid running back in the sport.

In his last healthy season, McCaffrey tallied a league-best 2,392 yards from scrimmage. If the Panthers are really offering him up for Watson, it demonstrates how serious they are about acquiring the quarterback. They might have to convince Watson to join them first, though.

Photo: Jan 27, 2019; Orlando, FL, USA; AFC quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) in the NFL Pro Bowl football game at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Mark Ingram thanks Texans for classy gesture before trading him

Mark Ingram during a game

Mark Ingram is happy that he was traded from the 1-6 Houston Texans to the New Orleans Saints this week, but he has no hard feelings toward his former team. In fact, it sounds like the move made the veteran running back think even more highly of them.

Ingram praised the Texans on Friday for being “transparent with me and honest with me” before they traded him to New Orleans. He said they informed him that the Saints had inquired about him and let him decide if he wanted to be traded.

“They said if it was any other team, this wouldn’t even be a discussion,” Ingram said. “But out of respect for me and what I’ve done throughout my career and how I started (in New Orleans), they wanted to give me the option of making a decision.”

Ingram said he slept on it and went in the following day and thanked Texans coach David Culley and general manager Nick Caserio for their understanding. The 31-year-old informed the team that he would appreciate being traded to the Saints, and the deal was made.

Ingram spent the first eight seasons of his career in New Orleans. The Saints have a need for a big back like him alongside Alvin Kamara, and they are certainly in a better position to contend than Houston.

One Texans player may have been furious that the team traded Ingram, but Ingram clearly welcomed the change.

Photo: Nov 29, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; New Orleans Saints running back Mark Ingram (22) prior to the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Brandin Cooks ticked off with Texans over Mark Ingram trade

Brandin Cooks after a catch

The Houston Texans made a trade Wednesday that appears unpopular with at least one member of their team.

As first reported by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Texans traded running back Mark Ingram to New Orleans. Ingram will help take some of the load off Alvin Kamara, who hasn’t had a capable backup all season.

The Texans, on the other hand, are going nowhere, and this deal underlines that. It did not sit well with wide receiver Brandin Cooks, who sent a critical tweet that appeared to be related to the reported deal.

“This is bulls–t. Such a joke,” Cooks tweeted minutes after the report.

Unfortunately for Cooks, this is the situation Houston is in. When one of the franchise’s most iconic players has this to say about facing them, you know the organization is in disarray. If Cooks is lucky, he may be the next veteran out the door, because the organization is heading for a full rebuild.

Cooks is Houston’s leading receiver by some distance, with 45 catches for 502 yards and a touchdown on the season.

Photo: Sep 19, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Houston Texans wide receiver Brandin Cooks (13) runs the ball for a first down against the Cleveland Browns during the second quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports