The list of candidates who interviewed to be the head coach of the Houston Texans received an odd addition on Saturday when The group announced it talked to Hines Ward about the vacancy.
Ward, 45, played 14 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers – earning four trips to the Pro Bowl – before retiring for the 2012 season. While it’s been a decade since his NFL career ended, Ward has only just entered the ranks of coaches. He joined the Steelers coaching staff as an intern in 2017 and then spent two seasons as an offensive assistant for the New York Jets before joining the Florida Atlantic University coaching staff in year 2021.
Ward was hired as a special assistant to head coach Willie Taggart, but he was promoted to a widely accepted trainer in November. The FAU ranked 5-7 in Ward’s first season on the coaching staff.
The Texans announced two other interviewees, but the other applicants were less surprised than Ward. The team interviewed former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores and current Los Angeles Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi.
Houston finished 4-13 and fired coach David Culley on a Thursday after just one working season.