Should the Houston Texans kept Mike Vrabel over Bill O’Brien?
By Jair Lopez
Did the Houston Texans make the right move in choosing between the two head coaches?
Should the Houston Texans kept Mike Vrabel over Bill O’Brien? It is a burning question that everyone should be asking themselves with the Houston Texans out of the playoffs and the Tennessee Titans advancing to the AFC Championship.
O’Brien brought Vrabel under his wing with the Texans after being a defensive line/linebackers coach with the Ohio State Buckeyes from 2011-2013. Vrabel made an impact working with the development of Jadeveon Clowney, Whitney Mercilus, and Benardrick McKinney.
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Vrabel showed a keen ability in developing players and was in an excellent position for a promotion for a head coaching job before the Texans ascended him as the defensive coordinator for the 2017 season. Although the Texans took one of their worst records to date at 4-12 with Vrabel as the defensive coordinator, the defense was without Watt and Mercilus for the majority of the year due to season-ending injuries.
With O’Brien entering the final year of his fifth year deal with the Texans, the former ownership under Bob McNair had the opportunity to part ways, but the sudden addition of Deshaun Watson played a pivotal part in O’Brien’s long term job security as he worked closely with him in his rookie season.
Along with Watson’s promising partnership, O’Brien also had the momentum to earn a new deal with Rick Smith stepping down from his general manager position to take care of a personal family matter. The vacancies at the helm of the Texans’ front office has opened a door for O’Brien to stake in the front office with no general manager candidate currently on their radar.
O’Brien signed a five-year extension with the Texans with what remains a very questionable track record in the playoffs. All three teams in the AFC South have advanced to the third round of the playoffs, with the exception of O’Brien since 2014.
It remains to be seen if Vrabel will turn out to be the better of the two head coaches in only his second season as the Titans head coach, but he has gotten to the AFC Championship game before O’Brien in less time on the job.
Both coaches started with identical storylines with 18-14 records in their first two seasons and failed to make the playoffs in their first year before qualifying the next season. However, if the Titans advance to the Super Bowl, one will have to wonder if the Texans made the correct choice in picking the right coach for the foreseeable future.
The time is ticking for O’Brien to push the Texans past the divisional round to a Super Bowl contender.