Firing Bill O’Brien represented a step in the right direction for the Houston Texans. The same cannot be said for the franchise’s surprising decision to get rid of Amy Palcic. In fact, firing her could come back to bite Houston in a big way.
In other words: The Texans have a potential legal fiasco on their hands.
The firing of Amy Palcic shocked the NFL community
On Tuesday, Adam Schefter dropped a huge bombshell when he reported that the Texans fired Amy Palcic. Somehow, Houston determined that its vice president of communications was no longer “a cultural fit” with the franchise.
Her abrupt dismissal sent shockwaves through the NFL community. After all, she has established a reputation as one of the best in the business during the course of her career.
Palcic became the first (and only) woman to have full PR responsibilities for an NFL team. She won the 2017 Rozelle Award for having the best PR staff in the league.
Widely respected by her colleagues, Palcic’s firing even drew the attention of J.J. Watt. Houston’s star defensive end recounted her accomplishments in a tweet that ended with, “Whoever picks up @amypalcic will be getting one of the absolute best in the business.”
Peter King referred to Palcic’s dismissal as “stunning” while declaring her “one of the best media-relations people” he has ever met in his 36 years covering the NFL.
The Texans have a potential legal fiasco on their hands
It doesn’t sound like Amy Palcic will go away quietly after losing her job.
In fact, the Texans have a potential legal fiasco on their hands that could cause this story to become much, much bigger.
On Thursday, Ben Fischer of Sports Business Daily reported that Palcic recently hired Houston-based lawyer Joseph Ahmad. According to his website, Ahmad handles a variety of legal matters, including breach of contract issues.
Ahmad declined to offer more details about any future legal action.
“The only thing I can say is I’ve been retained by Amy,” he said.
Of course, it will be interesting to find out why exactly the Texans deemed Palcic to not be a cultural fit. Based on the reactions about her firing, it sounds like Houston may have made a massive mistake that could have significant legal implications.
Ultimately, we will have to wait and see if Palcic brings forth a wrongful termination case against her former employer. Either way, her firing made one thing clear: Change is coming in Houston.
Expect Houston to look quite different in 2021
At 2-6, the Texans have not given their fans much to cheer about this season. But will that change in 2021?
This offseason will go down as the most important in the history of the franchise. Houston has to find the right head coach who can help maximize Deshaun Watson’s skillset. Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy would be an ideal fit. But given their recent history of decision making, the Texans could go an entirely different direction.
Plus, Houston faces some major decisions about some of its top players. If the team intends on hitting the reset button, expect Watt to get traded. Could Brandin Cooks and Whitney Mercilus also get moved in an effort to cut costs?
The Texans also need to upgrade the talent around Watson. Houston needs to devote an early-round pick on a receiver who can become his No. 1 target. An upgrade at running back wouldn’t hurt, either.
Ultimately, this team has a ton of issues to fix both on and off the field. Whether the Texans address those problems correctly remains to be seen.