David Culley was fired as head coach of the Houston Texans on Thursday, according to multiple reports, becoming the sixth coach fired since the end of the season and leaving just one black head coach in the NFL.
The Houston Chronicle, ESPN, NFL Network and several Houston television stations said the team made the move four days after the team finished 4-13 with a 28-25 loss to Tennessee.
After Bill O’Brien was fired and Romeo Crennel served as interim in a 4-12 campaign in 2020, the Texans gave Culley, an NFL assistant since 1994, his first chance at coaching- chief.
At 65, he was the oldest first-time head coach in NFL history. But Culley only lasted one season.
A nagging subplot all season was DeShaun Watson, the star quarterback who faced 22 sexual assault lawsuits and stayed with the team while benched for every game.
Texans general manager Nick Caserio, who also took over in 2021, is now seeking the team’s third head coach in as many years.
Head coaches Joe Judge of the New York Giants, Mike Zimmer of Minnesota, Matt Nagy of Chicago, Vic Fangio of Denver and Brian Flores of Miami have also been fired since the end of the season from their clubs.
Additionally, Las Vegas, which is gearing up for the playoffs, fired Jon Gruden as coach during the season and Jacksonville fired Urban Meyer during the campaign.
With Culley and Flores eliminated, the NFL’s only remaining black head coach is Pittsburgh’s Mike Tomlin, whose Steelers reached the NFL playoffs for the 10th time in 15 seasons under Tomlin, who never suffered a losing campaign guiding the Steelers.
The NFL has come under fire in recent years over the lack of head coaching opportunities for black talent.
The Texans, who had the NFL’s worst rushing offense and third-worst offensive unit, could go after Flores, who spent time in the New England Patriots organization with Caserio from 2004 to 2018.