Cal McNair seeks input from Deshaun Watson on next coach

Getty Images

As Texans owner Cal McNair contemplates the next moves to be made by the football team he inherited, McNair has made his best move yet.

McNair has sought the input of his most valuable employee regarding the team’s next head coach.

The son of team founder Bob McNair recently told ESPN that the direction of the franchise came up during a recent dinner with franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson. As explained by Adam Schefter of ESPN, “McNair wanted to hear Watson’s thoughts and opinions on who should be the next head coach, and Watson shared his opinions with McNair.”

McNair specifically told ESPN “that he welcomes Watson’s input, respects his opinion and wants the star quarterback to be happy.”

Some will look at this and exclaim that quarterbacks shouldn’t have input in such decisions. That players play and coaches coach and owners hire coaches. Others will say, “Why shouldn’t quarterbacks have input?”

So why shouldn’t quarterbacks have input? Teams want quarterbacks to act like supervisors on the shop floor, showing up early and staying late and taking work home and setting the example that inspires and leads the other players. Then, teams want quarterbacks to sit down and shut up when big decisions come around.

It’s a short-sighted approach that fails to reflect the fact that it’s much harder to find a great quarterback than it is to find a great coach, and that the team won’t achieve as much as it can if the relationship between coach and quarterback doesn’t work.

Although a balance exists regarding a quarterback’s input in issues like coach selection and roster construction, the better the quarterback, the more important it becomes to listen to him. Indeed, if Watson gets sufficiently disenchanted with the organization that he decides he’ll make it known internally that he wants out and that he’ll do the bare minimum until he gets his way, that’s not going to be good for business.

Ultimately, that’s not going to be good for anybody.

So, yes, McNair should listen to Watson — unless McNair wants to risk Watson deciding, in a year or two, that he wants to continue his career somewhere else.

31 responses to “Cal McNair seeks input from Deshaun Watson on next coach

  1. I would hope he would greatly consider Watson’s input. He is the franchise in Houston and as long as he doesn’t get any major injuries he just might be there for the next decade plus. It’s not like it’s Kirk Cousins giving input to the Wilfs. We all know his time here is coming to an end in the next couple years.


    I see your point but I think there’s a big difference between the NBA that is almost completely controlled by the players and an NFL owner getting the input from his star QB on what kind of coach he thinks would be best.

  2. Smart.

    This sort of collaboration shouldn’t be granted to every QB. But the elite of the elite should absoultely have a voice in the hiring. It would be foolish to not listen him. Doesn’t mean he gets to pick the guy, but thoughts on potential candidates or guys the front office already has in mind… the team should definitely listen.

  3. Nothing against Watson, but this sounds like a really bad idea. Will he have input on the GM? The draft? What could go wrong? Maybe everything.

  4. that fails to reflect the fact that it’s much harder to find a great quarterback than it is to find a great coach,


    I don’t think this is true.

  5. Good news Texans fans you’ll never be any good, because your owner is only interested in hiring people his quarterback likes…Smh

  6. Let me get this straight, management, who’s job it is to manage, is going out to he workforce to ask who they want for a boss….

    yea that’s gonna turn out…..

  7. I remember when Romeo Crennell was interim coach for the Chiefs, and the GM at the time listened to the players who wanted Romeo to get the full time gig. Big Mistake. Crennell netted 1 season and 1 win as the CHiefs head coach.

  8. Somebody needs to get Dabo Sweeny out of Clemson and on an NFL sideline. His players will crawl through glass for him and always are ready to go which is something the Texans a sorely lacking.

  9. Watson and McNair have a good working relationship. Asking for input is very different from asking “Who do you want me to hire?” It should be “tell me what you value in a coach and what do you think gets in the way of your success”. Watson is bright and mature. The offense is way ahead of the defense which at this point is an aging JJ Watt and a bunch of guys.

  10. Didn’t the Browns do the same with Baker before hiring Freddie Kitchens? Look at how that turned out.

  11. Who would want the Texans job? Yes, you have a potential franchise QB but you have no draft picks or cap room to give him help.

  12. Players should not make personnel decisions. This is so idiotic. If a player wants to lobby for a player, coach or OC then alright but that is way different.

  13. Good idea. I know if I owned a losing team and needed a HC I would ask the guy responsible for the losing, my mediocre QB who we should hire.

  14. The only head coach Watson has known in the NFL is Bill O’Brien. Unless they want his input on Dabo Sweeny or Crennell…

  15. It’s not uncommon at all in business to allow the top employees to meet with their potential new direct bosses and provide their opinions. This is no different than a team trying to bring a coach in to mold a young QB. These guys gotta mesh on the field and off of it and if they don’t you’re going to have a Bill O’brien or Adam Gase situation.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.