The job wasn’t open for very long.
The Houston Texans fired coach Gary Kubiak with three games left in what was a nightmarish 2013 season. Less than a week after the season came to an end with 14 straight losses, the team seemingly has its replacement.
According to reports, the Texans will introduce former Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien as their new coach at some point today. The report indicates O’Brien will get a five-year deal to make his return to the NFL.
O’Brien had been the offensive coordinator with the New England Patriots, but left that job a couple of years ago for the chance to coach at Penn State following the firing of Joe Paterno. Paterno had been let go as part of the fallout from the Jerry Sandusky scandal.
O’Brien had to deal with NCAA penalties that limited scholarships and placed the school under a bowl ban. Still, he went 15 and 9 in his two seasons in State College.
O’Brien had flirted with the idea of returning to the NFL a year ago, interviewing for jobs with teams that included Cleveland. He decided that last year was not the time to leave Penn State.
Now, apparently, it is the right time, and Texans fans are excited to see whether or not O’Brien can return the organization to the playoffs in 2014.
“He’s proven himself, taking a college program that was as low as you can go, to where they ended up,” one fan told our television partner Local 2.
Another fan said O’Brien’s name didn’t excite him at first, but it does now.
“When I first heard about it, I wasn’t all that excited. Now it’s grown on me since I looked more into it,” another fan said.
When Kubiak was let go, defensive coordinator Wade Phillips took over and was unable to stop the bleeding during the course of the final three games, going 0-3. Phillips has publicly come out and said he would like to remain with the organization as defensive coordinator, if O’Brien will have him.