The Sunday Splash! headline: Romeo Crennel may coach the Texans in 2021.
The inevitable implication: Jack Easterby may have found yet another accountability loophole.
Easterby serves as both executive V.P. of football operations and interim G.M. in Houston, despite a stunning lack of relevant credentials for the job — and real questions about possible embellishment of his football background and experience. If the pandemic prevents the Texans from engaging in a full-blown coaching search (a ridiculous proposition, frankly, given the way American business has necessarily adapted to the absence of handshakes and close-talking), then it also prevents the Texans from engaging in a full-blown G.M. search.
So if Crennel keeps the coaching job in 2021, Easterby likely keeps the G.M. job — technically on an interim basis.
It’s a genius move by Easterby, who despite his lack of football chops has demonstrated an uncanny ability to amass and build power within a football organization led by an owner who has taken a shine to Easterby. Although it’s far safer for Easterby to keep his neck off the chopping block by remaining in the ultimate take-credit-for-winning-avoid-blame-for-losing position of executive V.P. of football operations, he may be engineering a no-risk opportunity to give the G.M. job a whirl.
If it works, he sticks. If/when it fails, he says, “Well, I was never supposed to be the G.M. anyway,” and he goes back to being executive V.P. of football operations.
Easterby’s possible effort to finagle the G.M. job beyond 2020 comes at a time when more questions about credential inflation have emerged. Cody Stoots of SI.com recently noted that Easterby’s biography with an organization known as The Greatest Champion claimed as of February 2020 that Easterby had been “entrusted with dozens of head coaching searches at both power five and mid major universities for multiple sports.”
By October 2020 (after questions emerged here regarding potential puffery in Easterby’s online bio with the Texans), someone had changed “dozens” to “over 50.”
Currently, The Greatest Champion website is in “maintenance mode,” with none of its content visible publicly.
Easterby’s supposedly vast experience in searching for coaches won’t matter if the Texans don’t plan to engage in an actual coaching search after the current season ends. That specific part of his background could become relevant as soon as 2022, if the Texans decide at that point to finally search for a new head coach and a new General Manager, easing Easterby back into a position where he can wield power and influence without actual accountability for wins and losses.