A new head coach in Jacksonville should have the Houston Texans preparing for a battle in ’22.
As of this posting, the Houston Texans still haven’t decided on who they want to be their new head coach to replace former head coach David Culley, who spent one season with the franchise.
The Texans were third in the AFC South, and for two straight seasons half of their wins in a season have come against the Jacksonville Jaguars, as the Texans have won just four games in each of the past two seasons.
Houston has defeated the Jaguars eight consecutive times, so that’s a four-year winning streak against their AFC South counterpart. All-time since 2002, the Texans are 27-13-0 against Jacksonville, but extending the current winning streak against the Jaguars will be tougher because they will be facing a former Super Bowl winning coach for the foreseeable future.
The new head coach of the Jaguars is Doug Pederson, who won a Super Bowl championship as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles with Nick Foles as the starting quarterback in that game and playoffs. The other quarterback on that team was Carson Wentz, so if there is one thing Pederson knows it is getting the most from any quarterback on his roster.
That brings us to Pederson and his new quarterback the 2021 No. 1 overall draft choice Trevor Lawrence. The quarterback will be entering his second season in the NFL, but instead of having a unique situation at head coach like he did during his rookie season, Pederson will bring respect and some much-needed stability to the Jacksonville team in ’22.
Now the most important question to all of this is … How do the Houston Texans counter this signing, and what can they do to become a better football team?
Houston Texans: Some thoughts on how to counter Jacksonville’s Pederson hire
The biggest decision for the Houston Texans is making sure they get the right head coach for the job. There have been reports the three finalists for the position of head coach are Brian Flores, Josh McCown, and Jonathan Gannon.
Houston can’t mess this decision up, and to be honest if the decision is between these three men the decision that must be made is Flores as the head coach, no matter if he has a lawsuit against the NFL.
Even though his Dolphins team started off with a 1-7 record last season, they still continued to play hard, and eventually were in the thick of the playoff race in the AFC before they ultimately were eliminated from the playoff race by the Tennessee Titans in the next to last week of the regular season.
Flores has coached teams that are rebuilding before and with the Dolphins in two of his three seasons had a winning record. In his final two seasons with the Dolphins, Flores led Miami to records of 10-6 and 9-8. Looking at the Texans in that same span, they were 4-12 and 4-13 with three different head coaches (Bill O’Brien/Romeo Crennel, and David Culley).
If the Texans even have the slightest thought of having Deshaun Watson return as a starting quarterback Flores might be the only way that can happen. If not, Flores can help Davis Mills become a better quarterback, as Mills has shown he’s capable of being a regular starter in the league.
The Texans also can counter the Pederson and Jaguars union by adding to their defense with the third overall pick as one of the two “big-time” pass rushers could still be available as they are Aidan Hutchinson (Michigan) and Kayvon Thibodeaux (Oregon) with that selection, that is if Jacksonville and the Detroit Lions don’t select them first. If they are both gone, no sweat as safety Kyle Hamilton of Notre Dame will be on the board, so adding a top safety to the defense would be great as well.
Any way you look at it, the Texans could do great if they hire Flores and start adding to their defense to offset Pederson and Lawrence and the rest of the Jacksonville offense.
The next few months will be fun, and even more, some of the most important times of both of these organizations, as they are trying to offset a lot of the losing they’ve encountered in recent memory.