TX, Thursday, January 6, 2011.
Wade Phillips knows how he can fix the
Houston Texans' defense.
hired as defensive coordinator on Wednesday,
two days after coach Gary Kubiak fired four
defensive assistants, including coordinator
Frank Bush. The Texans (6-10) lost eight of
their last 10 games, mostly due to a defense
that ranked 30th in yards allowed (386.6 per
game) and last against the pass (267.5 yards
in a phone interview on Thursday that he
already sees what areas need improvement.
"I won't go
into specific things, but I look at things
and try to see what I can do to help and get
players better," Phillips said. "I've got a
lot of experience, so I think I know the
kinds of things that can help players, and
the schemes that can help them. That's what
you do as a football coach."
Bob McNair said the addition of Phillips
gives the franchise its strongest coaching
staff in the team's nine years of existence.
McNair spoke at a ribbon-cutting ceremony
for a $7.5-million YMCA that is the first to
bear the name of an NFL team.
been so confident about our coaching staff,"
McNair said. "It would've made a difference
for us last year. It will make a difference
for us this year."
as the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys
after a 1-7 start, has strong ties to both
the city and Kubiak.
He grew up in
the area and played linebacker at the
University of Houston in the 1960s. He began
his NFL coaching career in the late 1970s
with the Houston Oilers, who were coached by
his father, Bum. Kubiak was a ball boy for
the Oilers back then, and the two have
remained friends across 30 years.
not only thrilled to return to his roots,
but also join a team that he believes is
close to becoming a winner, even though the
Texans are still seeking their first playoff
"It's a dream
job for me, coming back home, being with
great people," he said. "And it looks like a
great opportunity to win. Those are all
interviewed with the team on Wednesday, and
was hired by the early evening. As
speculation swirled that Phillips would join
the staff, defensive ends Mario Williams and
Antonio Smith were skeptical at how well
they would fit into the 3-4 alignment that
downplayed their concerns, saying that he'll
be the one adjusting to Houston's personnel.
He said the Cowboys switched between a 3-4
and 4-3 scheme last season.
"I don't think it's as big a deal as
everybody is trying to make it out to be,"
impressed by how Phillips broke down the
deficiencies in Houston's defense during
"He's looked at
our film, we've talked about it," McNair
said. "He saw exactly what the problems
were, and he had ideas as to how they could
be corrected that weren't necessarily
requiring a lot of additional personnel.
"I agree with
him," McNair said. "We can perform a lot
better than we did, and I think with the
right coaches in there, you're going to see
some great improvement."
he's brainstorming with Kubiak about
possible assistants to hire. The Texans also
fired secondary coach David Gibbs,
linebackers coach Johnny Holland and
assistant linebackers coach Robert Saleh on
speculation in Dallas that Phillips might
want to bring Dallas secondary coach Brett
Maxie and linebackers coach Reggie Herring,
who worked for the Texans in 2002-03 under
former coach Dom Capers.
to move as quickly as we can, but we want to
get the right people," Phillips said. "We'll
look at everybody who's available. Some of
them on the Cowboys' staff are unavailable
be formally introduced on Monday, and said
he'll talk to as many players as he can that
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