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Friday, December 31, 2010
Texans plan potential 'Aw shucks' festival

By Paul Kuharsky

The Chronicle's John McClain reports that indications out of Houston are that head coach Gary Kubiak will be retained and Wade Phillips will be hired to revamp the defense, replacing Frank Bush. Defensive backs coach David Gibbs will also reportedly be gone.

Wade Phillips
Former Cowboys coach Wade Phillips might resurface in Houston as an assitant.
It’s an understandable strategy though it’s not going to placate the majority of Texans fans.

Phillips can be a high-quality defensive coordinator.

The biggest issue I see is one that was pointed out to me by a reader (sorry, I can’t find our exchange to give you proper credit): It will leave the team headed by two guys with “Aw, shucks” personalities.

That trait -- which would be shared by Kubiak and a new, powerful defensive coordinator -- wouldn't solve one of the team’s primary issues: its lack of a strong identity and anything resembling a killer instinct.

Those are traits that can trickle down from the top men when a team takes on the personality of a strong, forceful head coach.

It’s not how it will work in this setup.

So if this is how things play out in Houston, I think Kubiak and Phillips will need to work hard to find ways to strengthen the team’s backbone. They shouldn’t pretend to be people they aren’t, but they can change to a degree -- and will need to.