When Bill O'Brien was fired as general manager and head coach of the Houston Texans last season, many fans pleaded for a step-away from the "New England Patriots 2.0'' model they had appeared to have been following for some time.
So to replace O'Brien as general manager, who else to bring in but ... long-time Patriots executive Nick Caserio?!
He may not have been the first choice of many diehard fans. However, one NFL insider believed that Caserio is steering the Texans in the right direction and that given the time and patience, his appointment will pay off.
"Nick has a machine-like work ethic and his versatility was something that like even those who worked with him always stood out," said Field Yates on ESPN 97.5's The Wheelhouse.
A former colleague of Caserio's in New England, Yates had nothing but compliments for the Texans' main man who he described as a man of "integrity."
"This is the same person that you could see evaluating a college prospect, later on in the day coordinating a veteran free agent workout, and then later on in the day after that throwing passes on the practice field as sort of a stand-in assistant coach/quarterback on occasion," Yates said.
Caserio's versatility has been on show since training camp began, having been spotted out on the field more than once to sling the ball about and assist where he can.
Which Texans O-Lineman Returned To Practice?
Justin Britt is getting healthy just in time for the Arizona Cardinals game
Texans Add Veteran Interior Lineman: NFL Tracker
Houston Texans Tracker for 2021: Check back often as we keep you up-to-date on Texans NFL news as Houston works on its roster-building
Texans Defense Loses Starting Safety To Lung Injury
Terrence Brooks is expected to miss the next three weeks following a lung contusion
A former quarterback at John Carroll, Caserio was in New England from 2002 until this January. While with the Patriots he served as an offensive assistant and wide receivers coach as well as an area scout and eventually director of player personnel.
However, Caserio isn't the former Patriot most Texans fans have been concerned about recently.
Executive vice president of football operations Jack Easterby's rise from college team chaplain to interim general manager of an NFL team is as unusual a climb up the ranks as you're likely to find. And many have questioned his level of influence within the Texans over the past year.
Said Yates: "I know that it's going to take time in Houston, and I know that fans are understandably upset about things that took place over the last couple of years. I'm not naive to the fact that they've got some frustrations about some of the current members of leadership that pre-dates Nick Caserio and (head coach) David Culley, I know that Jack Easterby is a lightning rod, to put it lightly, in Houston right now."
While Easterby's position within the Texans was seemingly secured in the long-term with the arrival of his former New England colleague Caserio, ultimately one thing has become clear this offseason - This is Caserio's team.
Said Yates: "I think that putting some faith and trust into the new leadership in Houston and understanding that it's going to take some time, will prove worthwhile."
CONTINUE READING: Who Makes The Cut At RB For Texans?