Rick Dennison -- "I Just Work in Houston Now"
"I'm orange and blue all the way through. I just work in Houston now." -- Rick Dennison before his unsuccessful attempt to get the Broncos' head coaching position
There you go, Houston.
Maybe your city isn't the final stop for every wayward Denver Bronco soul. If you ask Rick Dennison, apparently, you're merely purgatory, a temporary detour on the way to paradise. To Rick Dennison, you're just a paycheck and a place to hang his hat and whistle before the "orange and blue" make the phone call asking the prodigal son to come home.
You're the "time out" corner in the elementary school classroom that is the now truncated rise of Rick Dennison through the coaching ranks. "Go face the wall on Kirby and be quiet for three years, and when you can prove that you can be a good boy, we'll call you back to Denver."
Most important, Dennison is Exhibit W (we're running out of alphabet, people) that Gary Kubiak's ultimate undoing as Texans head coach will not be clock management, replay-challenge brain freeze, or sleep-inducing press conferences.
Plain and simple, Gary Kubiak can't hire. He sucks at it. He's the worst.
If there was a book on exactly how to NOT build a staff, not just in football but in any walk of life, Kubiak is executing it to a tee --
"Let's get a bunch of amateurs most of whom have never done the job for which they're being hired, all of whom come from the same organization -- FRIENDS of ours -- so that we can all bathe in a big pool of dysfunctional groupthink."
If you're keeping score at home (and searching for reasons the Texans finished 6-10 this season), then just know that during the Texans' final road trip of the season, a trip to Denver, one of Kubiak's coordinators was hanging out in a bar until two in the morning and the other one was probably back in his room surfing the web for Denver real estate agents.
Is it any wonder, Kubiak, that your team had an historically inept defense and an offense that sleepwalked through first halves like 11 hungover college students?
If knowing the secret Bronco handshake is going to be the top criteria for whom you hire, Kubiak, then we would hope at the very least your two primary lieutenants would be fiercely loyal to you, if nothing else. After all, you hired Frank Bush and Rick Dennison into the highest positions they've held in football. They owe you.
And this is how they thank you.
Before his interview in Denver, Dennison said this about the Broncos' head coaching job (a position for which franchise legend and former Dennison teammate John Elway was the primary decision maker):
"It's a business deal too, it's not how good a friend are you, it's how well you will do this job."
Apparently, Dennison was right, because they realized John Fox was a much better option. Lucky for Dennison, he gets to come back to an employer where friendship as a condition of employment is everything and, in some cases, the only thing.
Dennison played his college ball at Colorado State and his NFL ball in Denver. The only thing that would make his job safer would be an MBA from Purdue.
Well played, Kubiak.
After the rumors came out that Dennison was a candidate for the Broncos' head coaching position, Texans beat writer John McClain of the Houston Chronicle tweeted:
"Dennison is a brilliant guy. He's the smartest assistant I've covered in 34 years. I'm amazed he's in coaching."
Yeah, I'm amazed, too. Politics would be a much better fit.
Smartest assistant you've covered, McClain?
Recent evidence to the contrary.
Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 The Game from noon to 3 p.m. weekdays and follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.
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