Monday, January 3, 2011

Disappointing Season Leaves Players Feeling Accountable

The Houston Texans' second win in their last ten attempts rang hollow as they persevered over the Jacksonville Jaguars 34 - 17 at Reliant Stadium to close out the franchise's ninth season at 6 - 10. Like the only other win in the better part of the last three months, this one also came against a team that was without key starters. Jacksonville's quarterback David Garrard (IR-finger) and electric running back Maurice Jones-Drew (knee) were both sidelined by injuries.

As the curtain falls again on yet another disappointing season, there was not a player in the locker room who failed to put the responsibility on themselves and each other. Although the Texans are sending three players to the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, they once again are ineligible for post-season competition. Now five-time recipient of the award Andre Johnson told me, "We just have to look at ourselves in the mirror as players to figure out how to fix what went wrong."

The truth of the matter is the blame is to be shared by the front office and coaching staff as well. Official word is still not available on whether or not Head Coach Gary Kubiak will return for a sixth season, or if Rick Smith will retain his tenure as General Manager. Together they negotiatied the team's first losing season since 2006 when they also finished at 6 - 10.

The Texans served a cold dish of revenge to the Jaguars for their Hail Mary in Jacksonville that many point to as the tipping point for the free-fall death spiral from which the team could never recover. In the press conference after the game, Gary Kubiak was asked if he was glad the season was over. He responded, "Shoot no, I want to keep playing, keep coaching."

An announcement as to whether or not that will indeed occur with this team is expected later today.

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