Smith becomes 1 of 5 minority head coaches with Texans hire_freckle removal treatment

KRISTIE RIEKEN·5 min readIn this article:
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  • Lovie SmithLovie SmithAmerican football player and coach
  • Mike TomlinMike TomlinHead coach of the National Football League's Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Mike McDanielAmerican football player and coach
  • Robert SalehAmerican football coach
  • Nick CaserioAmerican football player and coach
  • Brian FloresBrian FloresAmerican football coach

HOUSTON (AP) — Lovie Smith reflected on his past in the NFL on Tuesday as he was introduced as the new coach of the Houston Texans, a hire that made him one of five minority head coaches in the NFL.

“It’s not often you get a chance to lead three professional football teams,” he said. “I don’t know if there’s a guy who looks like me that’s had the opportunity to do that. So that’s pretty special.”

Smith, who is Black, joins Pittsburgh’s Mike Tomlin, New York Jets coach Robert Saleh, Washington’s Ron Rivera, and Mike McDaniel, who was hired Sunday to coach Miami, as the league’s only minority head coaches.

The 63-year-old Smith, who spent last season as Houston’s associate head coach and defensive coordinator, previously coached the Chicago Bears for nine seasons and Tampa Bay for two seasons ending in 2015. He takes over for David Culley, who is also Black, and was fired after one season.

“Coach Smith is one of the most respected figures in the league,” general manager Nick Caserio said. “I think a lot of us were able to see that this year. So, as I worked through this and got to the end point, I realized the best decision and the best opportunity for this organization to move forward was with the choice of Lovie Smith as the next head coach.”

Houston interviewed multiple candidates over the past few weeks, including Brian Flores, Hines Ward, Josh McCown and Joe Lombardi. Flores, who is Black, was fired despite posting winning records in the final two of his three seasons in Miami.

Flores sued the NFL, the Dolphins and two other teams last week over alleged racist hiring practices for coaches and general managers. Flores issued a statement through his legal team Monday night that said in part that the Texans didn’t hire him because of “his decision to stand up against racial inequality across the NFL.”

Caserio denied that assertion Tuesday.

“There were conversations with Brian after that took place, so that really didn’t affect the process at all,” he said.

(editor:)

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