Texans fire David Culley after just one season in Houston; becomes the sixth head coach released since the end of 2021

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© Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

David Culley became the last head coach of the NFL. The Texans fired Culley after just one season, the team announced Thursday evening.

The Texans went 4-13 under Culley in 2021. Houston was 30th in the NFL in scoring, 27th in allowed points, 32nd in rushing and 31st in rushing yards. Houston’s record mimicked his 4-12 mark in 2020, which saw Bill O’Brien be relieved of his duties after a 0-4 start.

Culley inherited a less than ideal situation in Houston. The team put Deshaun Watson on the bench throughout the season and suffered an injury to Tyrod Taylor. Houston went 2-9 with rookie Davis Mills as the starting quarterback. Mills has shown growth throughout the season, most notably his performance of 301 yards and three touchdowns in Houston’s Week 18 loss to the Titans. With Mills, the Texans have enjoyed strong statistical seasons with wide receiver Brandin Cooks, defensive end Jonathan Greenard, linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill and defensive backs Desmond King and Lonnie Johnson Jr.

Texans general manager Nick Caserio said he had “philosophical differences” with Culley “on the direction and long-term vision of our program going forward.”

CEO Cal McNair released a statement saying in part, “These decisions are tough, but Nick (Caserio) believed it was necessary for the future of our organization. We look forward to continuing to build our list and find the good trainer to keep us going. “

Culley, 66, had been an assistant head coach / receivers for the Ravens the previous two seasons before coming to Houston. An NFL assistant since 1994, Culley has also coached receivers in Pittsburgh (1996-98), Philadelphia (1999-12) and Kansas City (2013-16). He was an assistant college coach from 1978 to 1993.

Culley joins Joe Judge, Mike Zimmer, Matt Nagy, Vic Fangio and Brian Flores as NFL head coaches who have been fired since the end of the 2021 regular season. Jon Gruden and Urban Meyer have been removed from their posts during the season.

The Texans will likely pursue Flores given his relationship with Caserio. The two were members of the Patriots organization together from 2004 to 2018.

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