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Bob McNair doesn’t sound like a guy ready to fire his head coach

Texans owner Bob McNair knows he has a stable, productive offense led by coach Gary Kubiak.  That’s why firing Kubiak would be such a difficult decision, despite Houston’s uniquely frustrating season.

McNair spoke to the team and the media on Thursday and did not sound like someone ready to blow up the team’s structure.  McNair seemed especially buoyed by positive comments he got from colleague’s at the league’s owner’s meetings.

“I was shocked,” McNair said.  “They said [Monday night's game] was one of the most impressive comebacks they’d ever seen.  Frankly, they were all pulling for us after the way we came back. They were heartbroken because they knew how upset I was. You don’t see it happening with other teams. I was amazed by it.”

(Of course, the owners may have also been pulling for the Texans because they trailed the Ravens in the AFC playoff standings.)

There are a lot of reasons for McNair not to make a change.  We’re not sure that other owners encouraging McNair would be high on the list.  McNair said they would make “some changes” at year’s end, but that they were “very close” to having the team they wanted.

The full comments are worth a read.  I wasn’t sure how seriously to take them, but the players got a very clear message.

“I think with him saying that, it lets you know about the future,” safety Bernard Pollard said. “I’ve never once doubted the way coach Kubiak has directed this team.”

McNair has surely had doubts.   But it sounds like the owner believes his best move it stand pat at head coach.  Despite Houston being stuck as a “very close” team for years, we tend to agree.

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27 Responses to “Bob McNair doesn’t sound like a guy ready to fire his head coach”
  1. razic3k says: Dec 17, 2010 6:37 PM

    I think staying with Kubiak is a good idea. He deserves at least another year. He’s done a lot for the Texans organization. As a diehard Chargers fan, I have a soft spot for the Texans mainly due to their growth.

    Plus, I like Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson and their running game over the years.

    They deserve Kudos and Kubiak deserves a chance to take this team he’s fostered to its potential.

  2. beckzhere says: Dec 17, 2010 6:40 PM

    New defensive coordinator. Problem solved.

  3. jhorton83 says: Dec 17, 2010 6:44 PM

    I’m sure Texans fans will be just thrilled with another year of 8-8 Kubiak mediocrity.

  4. citizenstrange says: Dec 17, 2010 6:46 PM

    Kubiak has McNair convinced that the Texans are just “over” good.

  5. batterychucker says: Dec 17, 2010 6:51 PM

    About 5 million Texans fans in Houston think otherwise.

  6. FinFan68 says: Dec 17, 2010 6:52 PM

    If Kubiak stays then I would think that a new DC is in order…Wade Phillips, maybe.

  7. tfaulk says: Dec 17, 2010 7:10 PM

    You agree that Kubiak should be safe, but think Sparano is at risk of losing his job? Not sure how that math works out. Houston’s defense is just as inept as Miami’s offense. (Maybe they should merge.)

  8. 4sacroc says: Dec 17, 2010 7:11 PM

    Texas is the best job available, of all the possible openings.

    1. You have a QB

    2. You have a good owner

  9. *Legion* says: Dec 17, 2010 7:12 PM

    Rule #1 of firing head coaches as a way to improve your team:
    It only works if you get someone *better*. Not just someone new.

    Ask Pat Bowlen how firing Shanahan and getting Josh McDaniels worked out for him. Ask the Vikings if Denny Green’s one losing season was so awful after Tice and Childress.

  10. bowens3181 says: Dec 17, 2010 7:15 PM

    beckzhere says:
    Dec 17, 2010 6:40 PM
    New defensive coordinator. Problem solved.
    __________________________________

    Completely agree. Kubiak as done a great job as an offensive head coach, and his team fights for him every game. He isn’t the problem. The problem is the sheer lack of talent in the defensive secondary, and that can be fixed this offseason. Give Gary one more season to see if he can turn this team into a force. If he can’t then, then I’m all for firing him in 12′.

  11. bowens3181 says: Dec 17, 2010 7:18 PM

    tfaulk says:
    Dec 17, 2010 7:10 PM
    You agree that Kubiak should be safe, but think Sparano is at risk of losing his job? Not sure how that math works out. Houston’s defense is just as inept as Miami’s offense. (Maybe they should merge.)

    __________________________________

    The difference in Miami is they actually have talent on the offensive side of the ball, they just can’t execute. Texas’ defense is almost talentless, as outside of Ryans, Williams, and Cushing, a lot of their starters wouldn’t even make certain teams.

  12. importantpftcomment says: Dec 17, 2010 7:22 PM

    Bout the only place I have seen anyone talking about Kubiak being on the hot seat is right here at PFT.

    Consider the source…….

  13. mystereo says: Dec 17, 2010 7:46 PM

    Hiring Wade Phillips is Kubiak’s only chance to survive. He will definitely improve the D immediately so that Kubiak can do what he does best and that’s running the O.

    The Texans will never make it to the playoffs until they get a proven DC.

  14. commandercornpone says: Dec 17, 2010 7:48 PM

    agree, new DC, some d talent infusion, all fine

    they have also had injuries to good players

  15. righthereisay says: Dec 17, 2010 8:06 PM

    With Cowher and Jeff Fisher out there he would be an idiot not to fire Kubiak.

  16. realitypolice says: Dec 17, 2010 8:49 PM

    importantpftcomment says:
    Dec 17, 2010 7:22 PM
    Bout the only place I have seen anyone talking about Kubiak being on the hot seat is right here at PFT.

    Consider the source…….

    =============

    Please tell me you’re kidding. I recall reading in many places before the season even started that Kubiak needed to make the playoffs this season to keep his job.

    Maybe you should try actually reading other sources.

  17. freedomispopular says: Dec 17, 2010 8:58 PM

    Firing Kubiak would completely screw up the offense. I can guarantee the only reason Foster’s had so much success is because of Kubiak’s running system, the same reason Denver has so many different 1,000+ yard rushers over the years. Just plug a guy in and he’ll get the yards. And you can’t blame Kubiak for the lack of talent on defense. He’s got them going in the right direction and letting him go would set them back years.

  18. importantpftcomment says: Dec 17, 2010 10:08 PM

    @realitypolice —

    That was before the season started. Only place I have seen him mentioned as being on the hot seat since then is here at PFT and in local Houston rags/blogs.

  19. importantpftcomment says: Dec 17, 2010 10:09 PM

    @realitypolice —

    Up till this week anyway……..

  20. htownbeatdown says: Dec 17, 2010 10:09 PM

    A great man once said “Show me a loser, and I’ll show you a loser.” At least no one can call Bob McNair a bad loser.

  21. kevind713 says: Dec 17, 2010 10:58 PM

    Are you people crazy!? Kubiak has been here 5 years now, THIS year is the only year we have had even a decent running attack. We brought in Rick Dennison in the offseason, he fixed the O line, not Kubiak. The past 4 years our rushing attack was pathetic. Also, i saw someone say the lack of defensive talent isnt his fault!? Really? Who do you think drafts these guys? Its not Rick Smith, Kubiak hired Rick Smith, Kubiak is the one who makes final desicions. The defense IS his fault, thats why hes HEAD COACH, not O Coordinater. And if any of you have watched the Texans this year you would know we dont score ANY points til the 2nd half, I think we have scored a combined 60 points or so in the first have this year, thats among the worst in football, but thats not the coaches fault?? Kubiak is 10-22 on challenges, whose fault is that? Kubiak has been here 5 years, his best season was 9-7, zero playoff appearances. EVERYONE in Houston knows its his fault and wants him gone. Who do you think hired the last 2 D coordinaters……bingo!!! Gary did! No excuses, he has to go. As a season ticket holder I will be infuriated if he is back next year.

  22. kevind713 says: Dec 17, 2010 11:04 PM

    mystereo says:
    Dec 17, 2010 7:46 PM
    Hiring Wade Phillips is Kubiak’s only chance to survive. He will definitely improve the D immediately so that Kubiak can do what he does best and that’s running the O.

    The Texans will never make it to the playoffs until they get a proven DC.

    ——————————————————-
    He hired the first 2 DC’s. You think he should get a chance at a 3rd?? Thats unheard of. If his best skill is running offense, why isnt he a OC? head coaches have to manage clock, time outs, challenges, get players ready, none of which gary does well.

  23. mean13 says: Dec 17, 2010 11:52 PM

    Kubiak will never win a SB.

  24. batterychucker says: Dec 18, 2010 12:23 AM

    This is exactly the problem with the Texans. Not a single one of you has a frickin clue as to what’s going on.

    Kubiak should be fired, along with the rest of the coaching staff. This isn’t coming from just one crazy fan, this is what the fans are saying here (I’ve personally wanted him gone since the Jets game LAST year). But since the Texans have absolutely NO national presence, no one outside of Houston has a clue as to how things have gone here. It’s simply a case of S.O.T. (Same Ol Texans) week after week.

    That right there is the problem in a nutshell. Kubiak has had 5 years to do what he said he was going to do – make this a playoff team. Well, in 4 out of the 5 years, they’ve been 5-7 at the same time, with only one winning season at 9-7. This year the best they can do is 8-8 – another mediocre year. In fact, they’ve taken a step back. Fans in this town are frustrated as hell with this team and are sick to death of mediocrity. Every coach that has been hired since Kubiak has taken their team to the playoffs. Kubiak took a 2-14 team to mediocrity. Payton took a 3-13 team to the Super Bowl. Even Childress, who *Legion* commented about has been to the playoffs and almost to the SB. Yet this owner is satisfied with mediocrity and thinks we’re “on the right track” by being 5-8 and because other owners told him so. And importantpftcomment, the reason no one has put him on the hot seat is exactly what I stated above – because the national media pays absolutely no attention to this team, therefore they have no clue as to what’s going on except what they read in the paper under the game stats on Monday mornings.

  25. Bubby Brister says: Dec 18, 2010 1:12 AM

    If McNair wants to hire a guy like Fisher or Cowher, he should stop and consider why they were so successful in the first place and give his coach now that same opportunity. Cowher or Fisher would set the organization back about 5 years, focusing mainly on the defensive side of the football and trying to turn Arian Foster into the marquee player on the team. I don’t understand the hype over either one of them. Cowher’s one of the most overrated coaches ever — and this is coming from a Steelers fan — and Fisher’s even worse. They have a reputation based on their longevity, which is due to faithful owners.

    Fisher’s been there for 16 years, and they’ve only had 6 seasons with winning records and is 5-6 in the playoffs. What is so special about that? Blind squirrel finding nuts.

    Cowher’s better, he’s a winner, but his style cannot and will not thrive in today’s NFL, unless he’s willing to change (extremely doubtful).

    Kubiak’s only been there for 5 years and morphed this team into one of the best offenses in the league. You got Ryans, Williams, and Cushing on defense. You’re a player or two away from a middle of the pack defense and being on par with the Saints, Colts, Patriots, etc. Elite defenses are a thing of the past. Let a few more draft classes play out. If in two or three years they’re still not seeing results, then look into canning the guy.

  26. batterychucker says: Dec 18, 2010 11:17 AM

    Bubby,

    So you’re bashing Cowher and Fisher because their longevity is the only reason for their success, yet you say that Kubiak should stay for 2 or 3 more years, making him another long-tenured coach as well? What proof is there that he can do any better than the mediocrity he’s already brought? What then is the case for coaches like Mike Smith in Atlanta or Sean Payton in NO or Mangini with the Jets or Harbaugh with the Ravens – all took over losing programs and got them into the playoffs in a shorter time span than Kubiak? They’ve drafted first round talent on defense almost every year and are about to set a record for defensive horribleness. They have the leading rusher in the NFL yet game after game fail to utilize him in the right way. They average about 120 yards in the first half of every game this year coming out game after game unprepared.

    But no, we’re on the right track says the owner. I guess 5-7 every year shows promise. I guess one winning season in 9 years is acceptable. I guess it’s better to watch as teams like New Orleans who have been perennial losers turn it around with one hire and win a SB, but at least we’re “on track”. At this rate we should reach 10 wins in a mere 6-7 more years…woohoo.

  27. batterychucker says: Dec 18, 2010 11:18 PM

    http://blogs.chron.com/jeromesolomon/2010/12/kubiak_is_chasing_history.html

    If Kubiak stays on another year, he’ll be only the second coach since the merger and the third in the past 50 years to keep his job for a sixth year after only one winning season and no playoff appearances in his first 5 years.

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