The previous Chicago Bears head coach has consented to a deal with the Houston Texans to become defensive coordinator under new head coach David Culley, as per Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.
Smith joins the Texans following a five-year spell as the head coach at the University of Illinois, where he gathered a 17-39 record. His residency finished after a 2-5 season in 2020.
Before Illinois, Smith was the head coach of the Bears for nine seasons and held a similar role with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for two seasons. He holds an 89-87 record as a professional coach, featured by a trip to Super Bowl XLI in 2007 with the Bears.
Smith’s option adds a veteran coach to the staff of Culley, the oldest first-time head coach in NFL history. The Texans hired Culley, a long-lasting collaborator under Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid, from the Baltimore Ravens, where he was associate head coach, passing game organizer and wide receivers coach.
Inverse Smith will be offensive coordinator Tim Kelly, who was held from the staff of Bill O’Brien, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Smith will purportedly call plays on defense, and it appears to be likely Kelly will do likewise subsequent to calling offensive players under Bill O’Brien.
The group’s other significant recruit is purportedly Pep Hamilton as quarterbacks coach, per Rapoport. Hamilton just went through a season with the Los Angeles Chargers coaching Justin Herbert to a stellar rookie campaign. The group likewise supposedly targeted active quarterback Josh McCown, who met for the head coaching job, as a colleague, however it’s unclear if Hamilton’s recruit hinders that.