Perhaps the greatest move made by the front office of the Texans was the addition of Wade Phillips to the coaching staff. Son of former Houston Oilers' head coach Bum Phillips, Wade brings an arsenal of knowledge to the struggling secondary of the Texans.
Granted, many doubters will reflect upon his failure as a head coach in Dallas but let's face it, Wade Phillips is a defensive genius. He has taken multiple teams to the playoffs, many of which were previous bottom feeders in their division.
Wade's failure in Dallas was not a reflection of his coaching ability as much as it was a reflection of his inexperience with the offensive side of the ball.
Notwithstanding, Wade's conversion of the Houston Texans' defense from the conventional 4-3 to a more aggressive 3-4 will do wonders for the struggling team.
By bringing a hard-hitting, aggressive, mean OLB on most plays, the defense will begin to shake up many of the pass-heavy teams that have flustered them in the past.
Added pressure on the quarterback will mean more quick short passes and more ground-and-pound against a defense that is already solid against the run game.
While no one can expect Wade to walk in and make the Texans an overnight success story, I believe that within two seasons, the Texans will be in the playoffs.
However, if Wade can even have marginal success with the team's defense, combined with the already potent offense, there is no reason why the Texans can't make the playoffs this season.
Mario Williams, the former DE of the Houston Texans, will be switching to OLB opposite of either Xavier Adibi or rookie Brooks Reed.
His presence as a constant pass rusher will cause nightmares for opposing offenses (think DeMarcus Ware but taller, heavier, and just as fast).
No longer will quarterbacks have the luxury of sitting in the pocket looking for gaping holes in the secondary. Rather, they will be constantly alert wondering which edge the hulking "Super" Mario will be coming from.
Phillips has already made it painfully clear that Mario will be dropping into coverage "very rarely." That being said, his ability to come off the line in a stand-up position will be a welcome relief for the ailing pass rush presence of yesteryear.
Combining the constant threat of a devastating hit with the different looks of Wade's hybrid 3-4 will make the Texans' defense THE defense of the AFC South.
Lastly, and perhaps the most overlooked key to success for the Texans, is the role switch for CB Glover Quin to the safety position.
His quickness and agility, combined with his range and instincts, will make him a formidable force for the Texans against the long ball.
His football intelligence is strong enough that Phillips sees him as an integral part of the new defense, capable of adjusting the secondary to fit offensive play calls.
Altogether, Phillips' new hybrid 3-4 defense will show different packages to offenses (keeping them off-balance), Mario Williams will bring a more glaring pass-rush presence off the edge on most downs, and Glover Quin will help solidify the defense against the deep threat.
These three factors, along with the presence of Brian Cushing and DeMeco Ryans midfield, could spell trouble for offenses in the 2011 season and for years to come!