The Right Stuff? Explore the Houston Texans' Coaching Staff
The 2008 season was one of the most productive seasons ever for the Houston Texans. Though while there was a big improvement, mainly from the offensive end, the Texans were still on the outside looking in when it came to playing in the postseason.
With that there's a few questions every Houston Texans fan should have the answer to.
Who are the coach's responsible for the Texans exploding their way into the third best offense in the NFL?
Who is the coach charged with fixing the defensive problems that have troubled the Texans year after year?
Are these the right men for the job?
Take a look at the history of some key figures in the Houston Texans coaching staff this season and judge for yourself.
Joe Marciano: Special Teams Coordinator
Joe Marciano is the Special Teams Coordinator for the Houston Texans.
Highly regarded in his field, in large part to spending over 20 years coaching special teams, Marciano enters his eighth season with the team.
The first professional football job for Marciano came as a special teams and tight end coach for the Philadelphia/Baltimore Stars (USFL). During his time with the team he helped the Stars win two league championships.
In the 1986 season Marciano joined his first NFL team, the New Orleans Saints, under the same position. He would spend 10 years with the team before joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The 1997-98 seasons with the Buccaneers would likely be considered Marciano's most successful seasons.
During that time Tampa Bay set club records in yards per kickoff return (17.6), kickoff return average (23.7) and punt return average (13.7). The Buccaneers finished first in the NFL in opponent net punting and opponent field-goal percentage in 1997 as well.
Marciano’s special teams unit showed big play potential in the 2007 season, tying three NFL records.
The Texans tied the NFL single-season record with four kickoff returns for touchdowns, while becoming just the fourth team in the league's history to accomplish such a feat.
During the 2008 season Marciano's special teams ranked third in the NFL in punt return average (12.1). Kicker Kris Brown scored a team-record 124 points and Wide Receiver Jacoby Jones returned two punts for touchdowns.
Frank Bush: Defensive Coordinator
Before becoming the Defensive Coordinator for the 2009 Houston Texans, Frank Bush spent two years on the staff as a Senior Defensive Assistant.
After the firing of 2008's Defensive Coordinator Richard Smith, Frank Bush is getting his first shot in the NFL at calling the plays himself.
In his first year with the team Bush worked closely with the defensive line with Coach Jethro Franklin. In that season Defensive End and former No. 1 overall draft pick Mario Williams had a breakout year.
Williams would set the franchise record in individual sacks under Bush. Williams and Defensive Tackle rookie Amobi Okoye combined for 19.5 sacks; an NFL best for an inside-outside sack tandem.
Before joining the Texans Bush spent three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, nine seasons with the Denver Broncos and eight seasons with the Houston Oilers.
Bush, at 46, is relatively young for a coach with over 20 years of NFL experience.
Frank Bush was a former player in the NFL. After an outstanding rookie season for the Oilers in 1985, Bush's career ended prematurely due to a spinal injury the following season.
In 1987 Bush's coaching career began while he was still in his mid-20's as a college scout for the Houston Oilers.
Kyle Shanahan: Offensive Coordinator
Kyle Shanahan is the offensive coordinator for the Houston Texans. Shanahan is entering his second season as the offensive coordinator and his fourth season with the team.
Success came early for Coach Shanahan as an offensive coordinate, as the Houston Texans were ranked third in the league last year in overall offense.
In 2006 as the coach for the wide receivers for the Houston Texans; Andre Johnson had his best year statistically up to that point.
The next year he became a quarterbacks coach and the position had it's most productive year in franchise history.
Shanahan came over from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after the 2005 NFL season. While in Tampa Bay he served as an offensive quality control coach and helped Michael Clayton and Joey Galloway both exceed expectations at the wide receiver position.
Before making his way to the NFL Shanahan played Wide Receiver at the University of Texas and then later became a Graduate Assistant for UCLA.
Despite his early success, many people may only recognize Kyle Shanahan's name for his off the field publicity.
In 2006 a story was released in which former University of Texas Quarterback Chris Simms and Coach Kyle Shanahan admitted to having each others initials tattooed on their legs.
The two became close friends while at Texas and remain close today.
Alex Gibbs: Assistant Head Coach
Alex Gibbs enters his second season as an Assistant Head Coach with the Houston Texans.
Gibbs is a well known name around the NFL. Known for his success with turning offensive linemen in Denver into household names, Gibbs has been one of the best in his field since joining the league.
Gibbs began his coaching career in 1969 as a defensive back coach for Duke University. He began his NFL coaching career in 1984 with the Denver Broncos.
His NFL career began with the Denver Broncos in 1984 and he helped the team make two straight Super Bowl appearances in 1986 and 1987.
Gibbs spent 1993 and 1994 with the Kansas City Chiefs in which team teams offensive line sack numbers dropped substantially.
In total Gibbs spent 13 combined seasons affiliated with the Broncos. He helped mentor the offensive line, where franchise records were set and played an essential role in the Broncos back to back super bowl wins in the late '90s.
In a five season span from 1995 to 2000, Gibbs' offensive lines with the Broncos never allowed more than 35 sacks in a single season.
Under Gibbs in 2008 the Houston Texans averaged a franchise best 4.27 yards per carry running the ball.
The Texans also had the fourth best passing attack in the NFL while still having the team's second best year, ever, in rushing yards per game.
Gary Kubiak: Head Coach
Gary Kubiak is the Head Coach for the Houston Texans. Hired after the 2005 season, Kubiak replaced the fired Dom Capers.
He was given his first job as a Head Coach in the NFL and became just the second head coach in franchise's history.
Coach Kubiak's first year in the NFL came as a Quarterbacks Coach for the San Francisco 49ers where Steve Young had one of his best statistical seasons.
The following year Mike Shanahan was hired as the Head Coach of the Denver Broncos and offered Gary Kubiak a job as the offensive coordinator, which he accepted.
Kubiak spent the next 11 years with the Denver Broncos as an Offensive Coordinator and Quarterbacks Coach.
During his span with the team the Broncos led the league in total yards (66,501) touchdowns (465) and rushing yards (25,022 ).
Prior to being hired Kubiak's offense was ranked fifth in the league and his rushing attacked ranked number two in the NFL. The Texans were definitely hiring him with the mindset to improve the offense.
Kubiak has taken part in six different Super Bowl games. Three as a player and three as a coach with the San Francisco 49ers and Denver Broncos, in which he won two of them in back to back years with the Broncos.
His first year as Head Coach, Kubiak tripled the teams prior win total (two). In his second year he led the team to their best record in the franchise's history at 8-8. Kubiak's total record with the Texans is 22-26.