When people say that the NFL coaching world is a different game for Black head coaches, the Houston Texans are the prime example. For the second season in a row, the franchise has fired a Black head coach after one season. While both coaches had losing records in their solo stint with the franchise, that’s not something that happens very often and almost never happens to white coaches.
Stephen A. Smith recently said that Black coaching candidates should avoid applying for the Texans’ job given their track record. Fellow ESPN talent Robert Griffin III added that the news “shouldn’t sit right with anyone.”
A reporter asked Texans GM Nick Caserio, who hired and fired both David Culley and Lovie Smith, why any Black coaching candidate who interviews for the open job should have any expectation of full support from the franchise, which reportedly almost hired Josh McCown, a white former quarterback with no major coaching experience before the backlash caused by Brian Flores’ lawsuit made that a pretty bad PR move.
Caserio responded by saying race was not a factor in who he hires and, presumably, who he fires.
“I think each individual is going to have to make that choice. In the end, it’s not about race, it’s about finding quality coaches,” Caserio told reporters Monday. “There’s a lot of quality coaches. David is a quality coach. Lovie is a quality coach. In the end, each coach has their own beliefs, each coach has their own philosophy, each coach has a comfort level about what we’re doing.
“That’s all I can do, is just be honest and forthright, which I’ve done from the day that I took this job. And I’m going to continue to do that and try to find the coach that makes the most sense for this organization.”
There is going to be a spotlight on the Texans during this hiring cycle no matter what. Caserio can say whatever he wants, but the proof is in how they’ve handled themselves so far, and right now they’re exactly what Brian Flores and many other NFL coaches have been telling us the league and its owners are like when it comes to head coaching opportunities.