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Could Texans' Top Coaching Targets Have Better Options?

Jerod Mayo and Brian Flores could elect to snub Houston if Nick Caserio doesn't act fast

HOUSTON -- With each passing day, the Houston Texans are entering the dangerous area of potentially missing out on a head coach. They all but missed out in 2021, but will they again in 2022? 

Houston is doing its due diligence when it comes to looking at candidates. On Monday, the Texans requested permission to interview Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon to the opening, making him the fourth candidate following the firing of David Culley

As of now, the two front-runners for the position are New England Patriots linebacker coach Jerod Mayo and former Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores. He was brought in immediately following the dismissal of Culley, but Mayo has yet to be requested. 

Perhaps Texans general manager Nick Caserio feels as if Mayo is the right fit, but the team must interview others to make sure he's the top choice. That could be risky as now the 35-year-old Patriots coach is becoming a hot commodity. 

The Las Vegas Raiders are the second team to put in a request to interview Mayo. It's also expected that the former first-round linebacker will interview this week for the Denver Broncos opening with GM George Paton. 

Mayo's rapid rise up Bill Belichick's ranks has made him a name to monitor this offseason. Two teams have requested an interview, but other franchises such as the Minnesota Vikings, Chicago Bears and New York Giants also could be interested. 

If Caserio knows who he wants, he'll need to act fast. If he plans on going the "Patriot Way" in order to fix the direction of the franchise, he needs to go all-in. 

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With each passing day, Mayo's popularity continues to rise. So does Flores', who already has interviewed with the Bears and reportedly in on the Giants' radar. 

Maybe Caserio believes Culley was the right hire last offseason. Certainly there were coaches would could have done better than a 4-13 record despite the roster being in shambles. On the flip side, there were coaches would have done worse than the 66-year-old first time head coach. 

None of that matters. The priority for Caserio is making sure his second hire is the right hire. If Mayo is his top choice, he needs to pull the trigger. Should it be Flores, he must do the same. 

Houston fired Bill O'Brien after four games into the 2020 season, making it the first team to fire its coach. Then the Texans were the final team of seven openings to hire a head coach. 

They were late to the hiring process a year later. They can be early to replacing Culley with a name Caserio believes will be the name for year to come. 

If Caserio has "his" guy, why has the team not made an offer? Should he wait too long, another team in a better overall situation could make the same deal, leaving the Texans back at square one.