Bill O'Brien Named Texans General Manager, Which is Crazy

Ryan Phillips
Bill O'Brien, Houston Texans
Bill O'Brien, Houston Texans / Tom Pennington/Getty Images
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Houston Texans head coach Bill O'Brien has officially been named the team's general manager. That announcement dropped on Tuesday just a few weeks after he engineered one of the more stunning playoff collapses in NFL history. Many -- including myself -- thought O'Brien should have been fired after that embarrassing loss to the Chiefs in the divisional round, instead the Texans just solidified his position.

In the divisional round of the playoffs, the Texans took a 24-0 lead over the Kansas City Chiefs with 10:54 left in the second quarter. They proceeded to surrender 41 straight points and lose the game 51-31. How bad was it? The Chiefs turned that 24-0 deficit early in the second quarter and turned it into a 28-24 lead by halftime. It was an absolute embarrassment for Houston.

Under O'Brien, the Texans have won the AFC South in four of the past five seasons. But looking deeper, that hasn't been a huge achievement. The division has been terrible in that time and Houston has never gotten beyond the divisional round of the playoffs. In six seasons as the team's head coach, O'Brien's regular season record is 52-44 (.542) and he's 2-4 in the postseason. That comes despite having a roster loaded with talent.

O'Brien has been the team's defacto general manager since the franchise fired former general manager Brian Gaine back in June. The Texans went 10-6 and won their wild card game before collapsing against the Chiefs.

The Texans feel like a sleeping giant that could be awoken by a better coaching staff. The team has its franchise quarterback in Deshaun Watson, an elite receiver in DeAndre Hopkins, a good left tackle in Laremy Tunsil, several excellent defensive players in J.J. Watt, Justin Reid, D.J. Reader, Zach Cunningham and Tashaun Gipson. Those guys alone make the Texans formidable. Houston has all the building blocks of a Super Bowl contender, but isn't competing for Super Bowls.

Maybe O'Brien isn't holding the Texans back, but he certainly isn't pushing them beyond their talent level. Now he's become further entrenched with the franchise when he should be on the hot seat. The move to officially make him the team's general manager makes no sense.

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