The Houston Texans coaching staff seems to have one thing in common in their coaching background.
Most of them made stops with the Denver Broncos, as either a player, a coach, or both.
Texans head coach Gary Kubiak was very familiar with Houston before coaching there. He grew up in Houston. Kubiak was also the starting quarterback for Texas A&M from 1979-1982, earning all-Southwest Conference honors as a senior.
In 1983, Kubiak was drafted in the eighth round by the Denver Broncos, playing for them until 1991. Kubiak backed up eventual Hall of Famer John Elway. From 1983-1991, Kubiak played in 41 games and started five. The Broncos were 26-15 in the games Kubiak played and 3-2 in his starts.
Kubiak also played in four of the Broncos' playoff games, including Super Bowls XXI and XXIV. The Broncos were 1-3 in the games Kubiak, played with their only win being a 34-10 victory over the Houston Oilers in the 1988 divisional playoffs. Kubiak completed 84 percent of his passes in the playoffs for 212 yards.
After his playing career, Kubiak went into coaching. Kubiak began his coaching career at his alma matter A&M as the running-backs coach. He coached at A&M from 1992-1993, coaching Greg Hill to second team All-America honors in 1993.
Kubiak continued his coaching career in the NFL, starting with the San Francisco 49ers in 1994. Kubiak was the quarterbacks coach and helped guide Steve Young and the 49ers to their fifth Super Bowl victory.
After the 1994-1995 season, Kubiak was hired as the Broncos' offensive coordinator, where he remained until becoming the Texans' head coach in 2006. From 1995-1998, Kubiak tutored Elway and all-pro running back Terrell Davis to two Super Bowl victories and two AFC West division titles.
In his career as the Broncos' offensive coordinator, Denver was 114-62 and 8-5 in the playoffs. Nine out of eleven of Kubiak’s seasons, the Broncos ranked in the top five of the NFL in yards. Ten out of eleven seasons, the Broncos ranked in the top ten in points scored.
Under Kubiak, the Broncos had 22 offensive players make the Pro Bowl. All three Bronco starting quarterbacks under Kubiak made at least one Pro Bowl Appearance. Elway was nominated 1995-1998, Brian Griese was nominated in 2000, and Jake Plummer was nominated in 2005.
Since taking over the Texans in 2006, Kubiak has led Houston to 22 wins. The Texans only won 18 games from 2002-2005. Kubiak led Houston to their first non-losing season in 2007, and led them to 8-8 again in 2008.
In 2009, Kyle Shanahan will enter his second season as the Texans offensive coordinator and fourth season with Houston.
Shanahan got a very early experience in football, being the son of former Broncos’ head coach Mike Shanahan. Kyle Shanahan was born in Minneapolis and later moved to Colorado. In high school, Kyle Shanahan played for Cherry Creek High School from 1995-1998.
Kyle Shanahan started his college career playing wide receiver for the Duke Blue Devils in 1999. In 2000, Shanahan transferred to the University of Texas. In his senior season, Shanahan averaged 8.9 yards per reception.
After playing in college, Kyle Shanahan started his coaching career as a graduate assistant for UCLA in 2003. The Bruins made it to the Silicon Valley Bowl that season. After the season, Shanahan started his professional career as the offensive quality-control coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
During his time with the Buccaneers, Michael Clayton broke the franchise rookie record for receptions and touchdowns. Joey Galloway finished seventh in the NFL in receiving yards.
In 2006, Kyle Shanahan joined the Texans as a receivers coach. Andre Johnson got his first start in the Pro Bowl leading the league in receptions with 103. After the season, Kyle Shanahan became the quarterbacks coach.
In his first season as quarterbacks coach, the Texans broke franchise records for most completions, passing yards and touchdowns. Houston quarterbacks were only sacked 22 times the whole season.
In 2008, Shanahan was promoted to his current position as offensive coordinator. Last season the Texans were ranked third in the league in offense and had the fourth best rated passing attack.
Frank Bush was promoted from senior defensive assistant to defensive coordinator after the 2008 season. Bush enters his third season with the Texans and 19th season overall.
Bush was a linebacker for North Carolina State and was drafted by the Houston Oilers in the fifth round of the 1985 draft. In his rookie season, Bush started 11 of 16 games and had three sacks. Bush’s pro career ended prematurely after he suffered a spinal injury in the 1986 season.
Bush worked as a scout for the Oilers from 1987-1992. He spent three more seasons with the Oilers as their linebackers coach. After the 1994-1995 season, Bush was hired as the linebackers coach for the Broncos.
Bush helped guide the Broncos from 28th-best defense to fourth-best in 1996. Bush was part of the Broncos two Super Bowl victories in 1998 and 1999. John Mobley and Bill Romanowski started to become leaders of the defense. Bush coached the linebackers until 1999.
During the 2000-2001 season, Bush oversaw the defensive secondary and nickel packages. From 2001-2003, Bush was the special teams coordinator. During that time span the Broncos were one of the best in kick and punt return averages. Jason Elam was second and fourth in points scored from 2002-2003.
In 2004, Bush left the Broncos and joined Dennis Green’s staff in Arizona to coach the linebackers. In 2006, Bush was promoted to assistant head coach as well as linebacker coach.
Bush joined the Texans staff in 2007 and spent his first two seasons as a senior defensive assistant. During the time, he helped turn Mario Williams into one of the better pass rushers in the NFL.
Joe Marciano has been the Texans special teams coordinator since the franchise began in 2002. Unlike Kubiak, Shanahan and Bush, Marciano did not have any ties to the Broncos.
Marciano played college football for Temple and earned his bachelor’s in health and physical education. Marciano began his coaching career at the high school level with Wyoming Area High School in West Pittston, Pennsylvania.
After coaching one season at the high school level, Marciano moved to the college level in 1976 coaching tight ends at East Stroudsburg State. From 1978-1979, Marciano coached wide receivers at Rhode Island. In 1980, Marciano coached tight ends at Villanova. Marciano held the same position at Penn State in 1981.
In 1982, Marciano returned to his alma matter, Templefor a season coaching tight ends. From 1983-1985, Marciano began his professional coaching career in the USFL with the Philadelphia/Baltimore Stars. During his time, the Stars won two league championships.
Marciano began his NFL coaching career with the New Orleans Saints in 1986 as special teams and tight ends coach. During his tenure, the Saints had three special teams players make the Pro Bowl.
After the 1995-1996 season, Marciano left the Saints for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Marciano coached special teams until 2001 when he left to coach the Texans. During his tenure in Tampa Bay, the Buccaneers had two team records in kickoff return (23.7) and punt returns (13.7). Shelton Quarles held the record for special teams tackles with 31.
Martin Gramatica in 2000, broke club records in field goals (28), points scored (126), consecutive field goals (16), 50-plus-yard field goals (5) and extra points (42).
Marciano joined the expansion team Texans in 2002. In Chad Stanley ranked in the top five of the NFL for punts inside the 20 in three of his first four seasons with the Texans. Under Marciano, Kris Brown became an accurate kicker especially from long distance.
Brown was also key on kickoffs recording nine touchbacks in 2004.
Marciano also has coached several strong kickoff and punt return men, during his tenure with the Texans. In 2003, J.J. Moses ranked fifth in the AFC in kickoff return average with 23.4. Jerome Mathis finished the 2005 season second in the NFL in returns with 54 for 1,542 yards. Mathis was the only player in the 2005 season to return two for touchdowns.
In 2007, the Texans tied an NFL record for kickoff returns for touchdowns with four. Andre Davis became the seventh player in history to return two kickoffs for touchdowns.
Last season, the Texans were third in the NFL averaging 12.1 yards per punt return. Jacoby Jones returned two for touchdowns.
The Texans coaches had various backgrounds—but most of them have made stops in Denver.