It’s worth marveling at the severity of the Houston Texans’ total organizational collapse. One year ago, they were a 10-6 team led by one of the best young quarterbacks in the league, holding a 24-0 lead over the Chiefs in the divisional playoff round. After blowing that game, the Texans are coming off a 4-12 season, their football operations have been turned over to an unqualified preaching weirdo, and Deshaun Watson reportedly wants out. How does a front office even go about trying to fix a situation like this?
Not very elegantly, it turns out:
Recall that it was the Texans’ initial refusal to interview Eric Bieniemy for their vacant head coaching position, despite Watson personally lobbying for him, that helped set in motion the star quarterback’s alienation from the front office. Now, despite having missed the window to interview Bieniemy before the end of the playoffs, the Texans are getting a second chance thanks to the NFL making a special exception.
Bieniemy is an obviously qualified candidate for any of the currently available head coaching jobs, and getting an interview is objectively better than not getting one. But this is also a development that reeks of cynical ass-covering by both the Texans and the league, and if it results in Bieniemy receiving an offer to coach in Houston—a job that Adam Schefter of ESPN reports is now the least desirable in all of football—it puts him in an unfair position.
The Texans should have interviewed Bieniemy weeks ago because he is the offensive coordinator of one of the best offenses the NFL has ever seen. The fact that they didn’t says a lot about Jack Easterby and Cal McNair’s inability to run a football team, and their sudden interest in him now reveals their new motivations. Are they now considering Bieniemy because he’s the best available candidate deserving of this opportunity (he is), or because they’re desperately searching for a way to placate their pissed-off star player? Given that Easterby once delivered a sermon about how Jesus Christ “competed” on the cross and McNair is reportedly referred to as “Tommy Boy” by others within the organization, it’s not too hard to divine an answer to that question.
It sucks for Bieniemy. While the league’s other head coaching positions are filled, he may come out the other side of the playoffs with only two options available to him: Spend another year waiting for a better opportunity, or inherit the huge mess created by two morons who shouldn’t be in charge of anything.