Houston (CBS Houston) – Let me start by saying I like Bill O’Brien. I think he respects the media. He knows they have a job to do just as he does. I also think the Texans are on the right track, but things are going to be much different. And change needs to be acknowledged.
Gone are the days of knowing if your favorite player will be ready come Sunday. To get that information, tune in at 12:00 on Sundays to see for yourself.
“I’ll follow the rules of the National Football League and when the injury reports are supposed to come out, I’ll put them out.” O’Brien said after OTAs on Tuesday.
When asked about Brian Cushing’s progress he replied, “I’m not sure. I’m not a doctor. I don’t know when he’ll be back.”
There’s nothing wrong with his strategy. He doesn’t have to give information he doesn’t want to give, but it’s a major departure from the last eight years. It’s an adjustment that will take time for many of us. But to quote thousands on twitter, “If they win, no one will care.”
If the media have to sit in a small, windowless room to wait for press conferences, then so be it. (Actually, it’s kind of funny)
If reporters have to leave the stadium before they have time to file their stories and reports, then so be it. (Let me be honest, we cover an NFL team. There are a lot harder things we could be dealing with.)
Player interaction with the media can produce interesting anecdotes. Remember Brian T. Smith’s story on Jeff Tarpinian overcoming brain surgery? Or Andre Johnson discussing his hot tub interactions with DeAndre Hopkins? Those lighter moments that provided momentary solace in a rough season, are likely gone too.
Instead, there’s this:
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
“The whole goal is to get us playing as one, as a team and we’ll expect good results if that happens.”
DE J.J. Watt
“I come every single day and try to do the best I can, be a good teammate and do my job.”
NT Louis Nix III
“Just working hard and being a good teammate to everybody around. I feel like that is all you can do, just work hard.”
“I just want to learn from whatever Coach teaches me and learn from them and do a good job at it. At this point, that’s my job.”
FB Jay Prosch
“I’m just trying to get better and become a better teammate and really just work hard.”
QB Tom Savage
“You just have to compete. You have to do whatever you can to help this team out and that’s all I’m going to do.”
G Xavier Su’a-Filo
“It’s about working hard and trying our best, do our job, be as coachable as possible and be a great teammate here.”
Notice a theme?
If I were coaching the Texans (which I’m clearly not), I’d probably instruct my players to interact in the exact same way. Limit info and have one clean message.
Yes, it’s boring. Yes, it can be frustrating. But prepare yourself because it’s not going anywhere and that’s okay.
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