The NFL's Houston Texans have hired DeMeco Ryans to be their head coach, despite outcries from sports media members that the team treats black coaches poorly, with some analysts saying African-American coaches should steer clear of the organization all together.
Ryans, who says the new role is his "dream job," joins the coaching staff just three weeks after accusations of racism were launched at the team.
In early January 2023, when the Texans parted ways with then-head coach Lovie Smith, waves of remarks came about the organizations' apparent prejudice due to the team firing two black head coaches in as many years. Ex-NFL star and commentator Robert Griffin III said he felt the team "using" two black coaches "shouldn't sit right with anyone."
Despite half of all previous Houston Texans coaches being black, popular analyst Stephen A. Smith said that other coaches shouldn't even attempt to work for the team: “The Houston Texans organization, I’m going to say something loud and clear over the national airwaves and I don’t give a damn what anybody thinks,” Smith said in early January. “African-Americans need not apply. This is not an organization that has been fair to African-Americans," he added.
ESPN's David Dennis Jr. took an inverse approach with his accusations, stating that the team could now hire who team officials actually "want," noting that the organization would give a white coach much longer to develop and grow the team than it had with previous coaches.
"This is why there's so much skepticism about hiring black coaches in the NFL," Dennis said on the show "Around the Horn." “Now you get to hire the coach that you want, probably Josh McCown, with a new quarterback coming up and you get to give him years and years because you say you’re developing someone new," he continued.
"Meanwhile, the black coaches got kicked out [of] the organization,” the analyst concluded.
Ryans, 38, will be the youngest coach in Texans history and told reporters that he is excited to build a winning team.
"We’re going to build a program filled with players who have a special work ethic and relentless mindset," Ryans said.
"I understand the responsibility I have to this organization and to the fans of Houston to build a winner, and I can’t wait to get to work.”
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