Who Is David Culley?

The Houston Texans have solved one of their many problems. The Texans have hired David Culley as the franchise’s fourth head coach in history. Culley takes over for interim head coach Romeo Crennel, who coached 12 games in 2020 after longtime coach Bill O’Brien was fired. Who is David Culley?

The Houston Texans are a mess

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Where do you begin with the problems of the Houston Texans? The biggest of those issues involves starting quarterback Deshaun Watson. Watson signed a four-year extension worth up to $160 million before the season. Now he’s demanding a trade.

Watson’s frustration with the team began when Houston traded Pro Bowl wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals back in March. The Texans got oft-injured running back David Johnson and a second-round pick in return. According to ESPN, Watson’s frustration grew after the team hired Nick Caserio as the general manager.

The month after the Texans fired O’Brien, who was the head coach and GM, Watson had dinner with Texans chairman and CEO Cal McNair, who valued Watson’s input on the upcoming hirings of head coach and GM. When they hired Caserio, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported wasn’t happy with the process. Schefter’s sources said, “Watson offered input on potential general manager candidates, but the Texans neither considered nor consulted with those endorsed by their franchise quarterback.”

Who is David Culley?

The Houston Texans brought in David Culley to become the team’s fourth head coach in their history. Culley isn’t short on NFL experience, having been a coach in the league for 27 years. He spent the last two seasons as the team’s assistant head coach, passing game coordinator, and wide receivers coach. He’s never been an offensive coordinator at the NFL level.

Culley, 65, is the fifth minority head coach in the NFL. He joins Brian Flores (Miami Dolphins), Ron Rivera (Washington Football Team), Robert Saleh (New York Jets), and Mike Tomlin (Pittsburgh Steelers) as minority coaches in the league.

Culley was an assistant head coach under Andy Reid with the Kansas City Chiefs from 2013-2016. He then went on to be the quarterbacks coach for the Buffalo Bills. “David is just a genuine guy,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said, according to ESPN. “He will be who he is every day. Has been that guy every day of his career. I’m thrilled for him. Great person. Genuine. Full of energy.”

Texans see Culley as a ‘leader’

On the surface, the hiring of David Culley appears to be a puzzling one. The Texans hired the Baltimore Ravens passing game coordinator, who doubles as their wide receivers coach, and the Ravens ranked last in the NFL in passing. The Texans, however, see Culley as a leader. Leadership is something the Texans desperately need.

“Heading into this process, it was imperative to find a head coach that our entire organization could rally behind and David is unquestionably that leader,” said Texans General Manager Nick Caserio, according to HoustonTexans.com. “David’s infectious energy, passion for the game, and ability to command a room was clear from the start. As he shared his vision for how a head coach should lead a football team, it further solidified our belief in him.”

“David brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our team as somebody who has seen it all in this league,” said Cal McNair, the Chairman and CEO of the Texans. “In his over 40 years of coaching, David has learned from many of the best coaches in the NFL while helping players navigate both the physical and mental side of the game. Highly regarded individuals from all over the league reached out to us throughout this process in support of David because of his unique ability to connect with those around him and his passion for the game and the relationships he creates.”