Houston Texans

Houston Texans’ calamitous approach deserves league-wide laughter

The Houston Texans couldn’t have fumbled the front office ball any more than they already have, so where’s the league-wide laughter at their expense?

I keep searching for new details. I’m still waiting on further explanation. I need someone to tell why in the world there’s not more laughter in the great halls of NFL coverage than there are now.

Specifically, I’m perplexed by the lack of league-wide derision aimed at the Houston Texans for their complete buffoonery when it comes to their attempts to reorganize the leadership in their front office. From the timing of Brian Gaine’s firing to the failed attempts to even tamper with Nick Caserio properly, the whole thing is nothing less than a joke—except no one seems to be laughing.

Maybe the lack of perspective on the matter, both on social media and in column inches, stems from the fact that the NFL is largely on vacation. Between minicamps and training camp is a mass exodus to beaches and mountains, family reunions and friendly outings. Maybe the Texans hit the public relations lottery of tripping over their own feet when no one was looking. Beyond that, it makes no sense why the Texans are skipping through this particular season.

If you’ve not been paying attention, the Houston Texans are basically a married man who had an affair and wanted to run away with the mistress. Except instead of leaving one to unite with the other, the mistress has decided to remain with her family and now the wife has found out and wants nothing to do with him either. If there was much of a plan in the Texans’ attempt to fire Gaine as general manager and replace him with Caserio, it unfolded as foolish instead of fool-proof. The joke was on them.

According to reports, the Texans began talking with Caserio without going through proper channels (e.g. officially requesting team permission for such a move). The Patriots balked at losing one of their own insiders and began filing paperwork for tampering charges against the Texans. Houston then backed off instead of trying to find a way forward with the Patriots—either offering a potential draft asset or two to gain such permission or playing chicken in front of the league.

Before the Texans ever hired Gaine in the first place, they attempted to interview Caserio for the role of general manager after firing Rick Smith after the 2017 season. They were spurned then and the team moved on to Gaine. One offseason later, the Texans have now tried again only to be spurned again in a stern voice. In the wake of it all, Gaine was let go with only one year to operate and the Texans are left standing.

What makes things worse is that the Texans knew how weird this was. In CEO Cal McNair’s statement when firing Gaine, he acknowledges the odd timing while delivering the news.

“After a thorough evaluation of our football operations, we have decided to relieve Brian Gaine of his duties as general manager,” said McNair. “While the timing may be unusual, this decision was made in the best interest of our organization in our quest to build a championship team for the City of Houston.”

The Texans might as well have said, “We know we tried this before and failed, and the timing is certainly weird, but we’re doing all of this anyway.” They believed enough in their plan to fire a guy but not enough to go head-to-head (or compensate) with the Patriots. The whole thing is a lukewarm job search that cost one man a job and a franchise its credibility.

At some point, the Texans will be fine and it’s likely they try to hold down the fort until Caserio himself is a free man (reportedly his contract with New England is up after the 2020 NFL Draft). At that point, Caserio will team with O’Brien and the Texans will act like nothing happened.

Which is pretty much how people are treating it now instead of the absurd story that it is.

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