The Houston Texans have been through a lot this past year. They blew a 24-0 lead against the Chiefs in their divisional playoff game, traded a star wide receiver, and fired their head coach and general manager, Bill O’Brien. The Texans also recently set another NFL record, and it isn’t due to their play, it’s because of their new interim head coach, Romeo Crennel.
The tale of the Houston Texans
After their disastrous loss in the divisional playoffs last season, many fans hoped it’d spell Bill O’Brien’s end. Although the team has had winning seasons with O’Brien at the helm, they never made it deep into the playoffs. Then, the offseason happened. O’Brien traded a top wide receiver, DeAndre Hopkins, to the Cardinals for David Johnson and two draft picks.
Enraged Texans fans wanted answers. Rumors flew that Hopkins was traded due to his influence in the locker room — an influence that angered O’Brien. Other sources claimed the trade happened because the Texans were looking to free up money. They claim Hopkins wanted a huge pay raise, and the Texans were looking to spend it in other ways, namely on quarterback Deshaun Watson.
There was no love lost between Texan fans and O’Brien. But it all came to a head when the team lost its first four games this season. O’Brien was fired, and Romeo Crennel was slated as the interim head coach.
Romeo Crennel’s rich football background
Crennel is no stranger to the NFL. He started his career in 1981 as a special teams and defensive assistant coach for the New York Giants. He went on to coach the Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs before settling in Houston as the defensive coordinator. After Bill O’Brien was fired, Crennel stepped in as the interim coach.
With Crennel at the helm, the Texans finally got a much-needed win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. It was their first of the season. After the game, according to the Houston Texans website, an ecstatic Crennel told reporters:
“That’s our first time this year, so they were really excited about it. Felt good about the way they played the game in situations that came up in the game, and they were able to fight through, make plays, make stops, and so they felt really good … I told them that they were better than the record showed going into the game, and I think they believed that to a degree, and then we won the game. So now they might believe everything I tell them.”
Romeo Crennel sets an unusual NFL record
The Texans first win of the season wasn’t the only thing to come out of the game. According to Yahoo Sports, Crennel is now the oldest person to ever coach an NFL game at 73. The previous record was held by George Halas, who coached the Chicago Bears at the age of 72.
Crennel may hold the record for now, but it might not be for long. Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks is currently 69, and Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots is 68. Both coaches show no signs of stopping, so look for Crennel’s record to fall in the next few years.
While his name goes down in the record books due to his age, Crennel would prefer it happens due to his team’s play. The Texans are hoping for a momentum shift now that they have a new coach and a new outlook.