As per the Ultimate Texans page of Chron.com:
"Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips will interview with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their vacant head-coaching position.The Texans gave the Bucs permission to interview him, probably Friday. Phillips, who helped the Texans improve from 30th to second in defense, hopes the Bucs will conduct the interview in Houston.“I’m gratified somebody noticed,” Phillips said. “We’ll talk and see how much interest (Tampa Bay) has in me. I’m torn. I don’t want to leave Houston. I love it here. But I’d like to get a chance to be a head coach again.”The Texans, who defeated Cincinnati 31-10 in a wild-card playoff game, play at Baltimore in a divisional round game on Sunday."
There are three big problems I have with this situation.
Wade Phillips is a much better Defensive Coordinator than a Head Coach
In his three stints as a head coach Phillips has amassed 79 wins and 57 losses for a 58% win ratio. His records with the Denver Broncos, Buffalo Bills, and Dallas Cowboys are as follows:
Denver (1993-94) 16-16
Buffalo (1998-99, 2000) 29-19
Dallas (2007-10) 34-22
However, he has 17 seasons in which his defense ranked in the top 10 in either yards allowed or points allowed with another four seasons in which his team was in the top 10 in takeaways. That means that over his 30-year career 70% of his teams have ranked in the top 10 in at least one, if not more, defensive category. Now call me crazy but I believe that 70% > 58%.
Also, I believe that the Houston Texans made Wade a defensive coordinator after he was fired as a head coach. If you ask me it sounds as if his greatest potential in the league is as a defensive coordinator. If you do not believe me just look at what he did in Houston. He brought a team from being ranked 30th in the league in total defense to second. If that does not convince you that Wade is a defensive genius (who should stay in that capacity) then you are beyond hope!
The Houston Texans Gave the Buccaneers Permission to Interview Wade?
I do not know if Bob McNair is just trying to let Wade feel good about himself but giving another team the opportunity to snag him away from Houston just seems ludicrous. Wade Phillips is a key piece to the puzzle that the Texans have been missing for years. His overnight success with the team is an integral part of why the Texans made the playoffs for the first time in franchise history this year.
Maybe Mr. McNair does not want to pony up the cash that would be necessary to keep Wade around…that would be a shame. The relationship between Bob McNair and the Phillips family is one that dates back many, many years. To think that he would let Wade slip away because he does not want to pay him would be a crying shame.
No matter what, I find it highly irresponsible and reckless for the Texans to allow Wade to interview for a head coaching job when he has done such a phenomenal job with the Texans defense. Allowing him to walk away now would be like trading Arian Foster away just because he does not want to share the field with Andre Johnson. It just does not make sense.
Why During the Playoffs?
This announcement, in my opinion, could not have come at a worse time. The Texans, being in their first playoff run ever, need to be a team that is focused on winning – not on whether or not the defensive coordinator’s head is in the game. I realize that Wade Phillips is a consummate professional but if there is a field out there that you consider greener you cannot convince me that you would not be thinking about it while playing in your own field.
The NFL should consider banning coaches and coordinators from discussing and promotions like this during the playoffs. Unless, that is, your team, and the other team involved, are not in the playoffs. This could create a ton of distractions for the team and could prove costly during the postseason.
I do not know whose idea it was to interview Wade during the postseason but they should be ashamed of themselves. Here we are, in our first postseason activity ever, and now we have to worry about this. This is not only unfair to the team as a whole but also to the fans who have become enamored with Wade.
I hope that things work out well for Wade, either in Tampa Bay or here in Houston, but Houston loves Wade and we want him to stick around for a while longer!