Everything is bigger in Texas, except for the length of the new contract given to the coach of the Houston Texans.
Owner Bob McNair said Thursday that Gary Kubiak’s extension covers only two years, putting him under contract through 2014.
McNair said that Kubiak preferred three years instead of four. “[I]t’s really a new contract, but it’s three years and that was his choice,” McNair said, in quotes distributed by the team. “It could have been four years but Gary has assured me that with the level of success he’s going to have that he’s going to be worth a lot more money if at three years instead of four and so I had to agree with him.”
Kubiak offered no specific reason for preferring the shorter-term deal. “I don’t know,” Kubiak said. “I’ve always done my own stuff from a contract standpoint, so that’s just something I felt comfortable with, and when Bob and I sat down, it didn’t take any time at all. I enjoy working for him; he’s a great man, he’s got a great family and he wants to win and win the right way, so it’s easy for me.”
In contrast, G.M. Rick Smith had four new years added to his current contract, tying him to the team for five more seasons.
“Rick’s is a four-year extension, so he’ll be with us over that period of time,” McNair said. “They’ve both done outstanding jobs. I think the coaching performance last year of Gary [Kubiak] was outstanding with the injuries that we had. I don’t know how he could have done a better job.
“In terms of personnel, you’ve seen our personnel get better each year and Rick and the scouts have really worked hard to be in the position to find talent and to bring them in and bring in free agents. I want to point out that the way we operate, that even though Rick’s responsible for personnel and draft, he works with Gary and Gary has his input into that. And likewise, Gary is the one who decides who’s going to be on the field but he works with Rick in terms of the personnel we have and what players we need to bring in and who should be on the roster. So it’s really a cooperative effort and I think that that brings about the success that we’ve enjoyed.”
It all sounds good, but there’s still something odd about Kubiak’s decision to take less, not more, years. Coaches typically prefer the security that comes with a longer-term deal.
If, for example, the Texans implode this season and McNair feels compelled to surrender to the inevitable calls for change from the paying customers, he’d have to buy out only two years of salary, not three.
Perhaps Kubiak simply has supreme confidence that the rise of the Texans will continue, and that they’ll be back at the table sooner rather than later working out a truly Texas-sized deal.