The first domino fell on Monday as the Houston Texans relieved Bill O’Brien of duties. Following the 2013 season, in which the Texans fires Gary Kubiak as head coach, the organization brought in O’Brien as the franchise’s third head coach. However, following a 52-48 record, O’Brien was fired as head coach and general manager, a role that he was given to start the 2020 season. With the Texans franchise now in the market for a new head coach and general manager, expectations must be kept low as the rebuild process begins. In this article, we’ll breakdown what the Houston Texans must accomplish moving forward, as well as a timetable for success throughout their rebuild process.
As general manager of the Houston Texans, Bill O’Brien left the franchise with less talent, most notably by trading away Jadeveon Clowney and DeAndre Hopkins. This season, the Texans brought in Brandin Cooks and Randall Cobb to replace Hopkins’ production. However, following an 0-4 start to the season, it’s clear that it hasn’t worked.
In addition to player personnel moves, O’Brien has also pinned the franchise down in terms of the salary cap. O’Brien traded for Laremy Tunsil last season, but had to secure a long-term contract for the left tackle. The pressure was on O’Brien to get this done considering all the Texans GM gave up to bring in Tunsil. The Texans sent two first round picks, and a second round pick to the Dolphins for Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills.
Additionally, the Texans also sent DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals, but failed to receive adequate value in return. Rather, the Texans sent a second round pick and Hopkins to Arizona in exchange for David Johnson. Both teams also agreed to swap fourth round picks in 2021.
Heading into the 2021 NFL Draft, the Texans are without a first or second round pick. Therefore, even if Houston finishes with a top selection in the NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins are benefactors. The first time that we’ll likely see Houston select a player in the NFL Draft is in the third round. When you look at ways to improve the talent around your franchise, this isn’t it.
Cal McNair, the Chairman and CEO of the franchise, has several key decisions in front of him. He has a top ten quarterback in Deshaun Watson, which any offensive-minded coach would love to build around. However, Houston’s roster remains depleted. As a result, this should be a full rebuild process for the Houston Texans franchise. Factor in the lack of draft capital, as well as the salary cap limitations, and it doesn’t get any easier.