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Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Texans Hire Rick Smith

Rick Smith was hired yesterday as the Texans' new general manager, replacing Charley Casserly, who served in that role since the franchise's inception. As the Chronicle reports, at 36, Smith is the youngest GM in the NFL and is also, as I am sure Jose de Jesus Ortiz, LULAC and Quanell X will be thrilled find out, the second black GM in the NFL after Ozzie Newsome in Baltimore. In a refreshing response to a question about Smith's race, Texans' owner Bob McNair responded that the Texans were concerned abou Smith's merits, not his skin color. Smith comes from a successful organization in Denver, the same organization, of course, as the new Texans' head coach Gary Kubiak. Speculation is abound that Smith will have a much more limited scope of power than his predecessor did and that Gary Kubiak will assume more power in personnel-related decision making, something that Dom Capers did not have during his tenure.

Tom Kirkendall thinks that McNair tired of Casserly's "blathering to the media" and therefore is redesigning the GM position in Houston.

ESPN reports that Smith and Kubiak admit to having butted heads in the past, which is a positive sign, in my opinion. One concern in hiring Smith was that Kubiak was bringing in a "yes man" who would allow him to maintain unchecked power in the personnel department.

The Denver Post's Thomas George writes a rather glowing critique of the Texans' hiring of Rick Smith. George's conversations with Bob McNair around the time of the NFL Draft led him to believe that "character" was the number one priority in search to replace Casserly, and George even opines that McNair's emphasis on character combined with Reggie Bush's recent run-in with the NCAA may have played a larger role in the Texans' decision to draft Mario Williams than many believe. The most refreshing implication from George's column, to me, is the idea that Smith did not want to draft Maurice Clarett. Judging from the 'character' theme of this column, one would guess that McNair asked Smith several times about his role in the selection of Clarett by the Broncos.

2 Comments:

Blogger Tim said...

Nice post, although I'm sure you had to stop several times to wipe tears away as you were analyzing your boy Casserly's replacement. Everything I read about Smith makes me think this was a good move. And I never tire of the media playing the character card in justifying the Texans' decision to pass on Reggie Bush.

Tue Jun 06, 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger Ted Bosquez said...

BRING BACK CASSERLY! BRING BACK CASSERLY!

Houston still needs a man of his inspired leadership and vision. Smith will never have the incredible impact on the daily lives of Houston citizens like that of the Casserly.

(Paid for by the Houston Branch of the Dallas Cowboys Fan Club)

Fri Jun 09, 06:49:00 AM  

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