HOUSTON – According to team owner Bob McNair, what the Houston Texans will be going through over the next year is “not a long-term rebuilding process”.
“I want to make that clear. We’ve got core players who are outstanding players and we still need to fill a few holes,” McNair said on Friday. “We had some injuries that hurt us in key positions, in terms of leadership on the field. We have some things that we need to do but we’ve still got a good core group of players that can make for an outstanding team.”
McNair fired head coach Gary Kubiak and special teams coach Joe Marciano a day after the team dropped their 11th game of the season.
During his press conference on Friday, McNair said that Kubiak’s replacement should have some familiarity with coaching in the NFL.
“We would like someone who has had head coaching experience, but has also had NFL experience,” McNair said. “It’s a combination of those two things would be the ideal situation and there are people who meet those conditions.”
As for possible candidates, McNair said the search for Kubiak’s replacement will begin immediately but that the possible coaches they interview will not be made public.
McNair did say though that Texans defensive coordinator and current interim head coach Wade Phillips will be considered.
“Yeah, we’ll interview Wade and give him an opportunity to interview for the position,” McNair said. “He’s got an outstanding record and he’s a fine coach. We’ll be interviewing him and we’ll be interviewing a number of other people.”
Among the others could be former Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith. His name has been linked to the Texans, especially considering his Texas roots. McNair made it clear that a person with the qualities that Smith possesses could be a good fit with the team.
“There are some people who are not coaching now that will be considered and Lovie is a good example.” McNair said. “He’s a good coach and one of several. It will be best for the whole process to keep it confidential as to who we actually decide to visit with as we go forward.”
McNair and general manager Rick Smith will reach out to possible candidates that are not currently employed with other teams and as the season comes to an end, other invitations for possible interviews could be extended.
“Some people who have been players always have a player mentality and you can’t have a player mentality and be the manager, be the coach, be the guy that’s got to make tough decisions,” McNair said. “I mean, you’ve got to think about the organization and not just think about the players’ viewpoint because the players’ viewpoint isn’t necessarily the organization’s viewpoint in all cases.”
“It’s going to be based more on the individual. We’re looking for a coach that is bright, ethical, who’s culture fits in with the culture of our organization, innovative, flexible, able to make adjustments, works with great energy and enthusiasm and very positive in his approach,” McNair said. “Surely that person is out there and we’ll find that person.”