Sports

NFL has one black coach after Texas fired David Cooley, league faces firestorm on social media

The Houston Texans were under fire Thursday when the team fired coach David Cooley after one season, leaving only one black coach in the NFL.

Texas went 4-13 in Cooley’s only year but the head coach had to deal with a lot for the first year coach. The team had all the legal drama surrounding Deshaun Watson along with his trade request, the circus he brought to training camp, and their will or refusal regarding the mid-season trade.

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Houston Texans coach David Cooley watches from the sidelines during the first half of his NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, California, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022.
(AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn)

Houston has the same number of wins as it did in 2020 with Romeo Crinell and Bill O’Brien. Houston’s offensive coordinator Tim Kelly was also fired.

“Earlier today, I met with David Cooley and Tim Kelly to inform them that we will be moving in a different direction as head coach and offensive coordinator. I came to this difficult but necessary decision after reviewing our football process,” Texas State General Manager Nick Caserio said in statment. “While changing after one season is unusual, we have had philosophical differences about the long-term direction and vision for our program moving forward. We appreciate Coach Culley for helping us navigate through a difficult season, but it is my responsibility to make decisions that I feel are best for our organization. The search will begin About the next head coach for the Houston Texans right away.”

Texas President Cal McNair added: “We are grateful for the energy and passion David brought to our organization throughout this past season. We wish him, his wife Caroline and their family everything but the best moving forward. I have entrusted Nick Caserio to lead football with performance and have complete confidence that he will find the best captain for our team.” These decisions are tough, but Nick believes they are essential to the future of our organization. We look forward to continuing to build our roster and finding the right coach to drive it forward.”

Texans fire David Cooley after one season as head coach

The separation caused a firestorm on social media. Many decried the Texans for leaving Cooley, the Lions, after one season.

At the start of Monday, the NFL didn’t have many black coaches to start with. The Pittsburgh Steelers had Mike Tomlin, Brian Flores was with the Miami Dolphins and Cooley was with the Texas. Dolphins shot Flores on Monday.

Ron Rivera of Washington and Robert Saleh of the New York Jets are the other major minority coaches outside Cooley.

Houston Texans coach David Cooley questions a call during the first half of a football game against the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Houston.

Houston Texans coach David Cooley questions a call during the first half of a football game against the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Houston.
(AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

Cooley discussed the challenges he faced in his first season with the Associated Press last month.

“There’s a guide they give you, like here all the things that are going to happen to you. Listen, there are many, many things that weren’t in that guide that I had to go through here and just learn, you learn quickly,” said Cooley.

“But the important thing is, do what you feel is right for your team. And be honest with everyone. That’s what I’m trying to do.”

Cooley also talked about the long road it took to get to where he was and the lack of minority coaches in the league.

Head coach Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks at during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field on December 5, 2021, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Head coach Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks at during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field on December 5, 2021, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
(Justin K.R/Getty Images)

“It’s very frustrating. And very disappointing for this reason, there are so many minority coaches in this profession of all races who deserve this opportunity.”

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It’s the first time Houston has fired a head coach after one season.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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