HOUSTON -- The Houston Texans are expected to interview Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell this weekend prior to an NFC divisional round playoff game against the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to league sources not authorized to speak publicly.
The Texans have already interviewed former NFL quarterback Josh McCown, an intriguing potential option who has only coached at the high school level, Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon, whom league sources said "knocked his interviews out of the park" with the Texans, Minnesota VIkings and Denver Broncos and is highly regarded around the NFL for his intelligence and knowledge of the game, former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores, who has options with the Chicago Bears, the New York Giants and potentially other NFL teams, Los Angeles Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and former Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl wide receiver Hines Ward, a receivers coach and special assistant to Florida Atlantic coach Willie Taggart
A former San Diego State quarterback, O'Connell has connections to Texans general manager Nick Caserio as a former New England Patriots third-round draft pick.
O'Connell, 36, also has interviews his week with the Broncos and Vikings.
O'Connell, in tandem with Rams coach Sean McVay, operates a strong offense with the Rams built around quarterback Matthew Stafford that's complemented by a strong commitment to the running game. This is O'Connell's second season as the Rams' offensive coordinator. McVay calls the plays.
"Kevin’s a great coach, and he has a huge say and a huge influence on how we want to operate,” McVay said. “He understands how valuable he is to me.”
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The Rams ranked seventh in scoring offense, averaging 27.1 points per game, and are preparing for the NFC divisional round playoff game against the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
O'Connell has also coached for the Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers and the Washington Football Team.
O'Connell played for the Detroit Lions, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets and Chargers prior to retiring in 2012. He played in two games for New England in 2008 and completed 4 of 6 passes for 23 yards.
The Texans have interviewed Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon, whom league sources said was "impressive" and is highly regarded around the NFL for his intelligence and knowledge of the game, former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores, who has options with the Chicago Bears and potentially the New York Giants and other NFL teams, Los Angeles Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and former Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl wide receiver Hines Ward, a receivers coach and special assistant to Florida Atlantic coach Willie Taggart.
“He’s the guy who I’m talking to probably on the majority of game day, throughout the week on the practice field, all of it,” Stafford said of O'Connell. “He’s a great communicator. He’s done an unbelievable job of helping me get into this offense. I wouldn’t be here right now, playing in the divisional round of the playoffs, if it wasn’t for a guy like that spending a bunch of time with me and helping me out.”