All I Want For Christmas Is A Football Coach

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Dear Santa Claus:

I haven't asked much from you in the past few years. So since I've tried to be a good person, I'm hoping that you'll do me a solid and fulfill my wishes this Christmas. Especially since I'm not asking for Ashley Judd, like in the past, but since I'm asking for something that will help not only myself, but all of my fellow Houstonians.

In short, could you please bring me a real football coach for the Houston Texans.

I'm sure that Gary Kubiak thinks he's been a good kid, and that you're going to bring what he asks for Christmas, but we all know that's not going to happen. It's obvious, after watching the latest heartbreaking loss to Indianapolis, that Kubiak's been a bad kid and that you've put him on your naughty list.

So please help the rest of us out and bring the Texans a replacement -- hopefully somebody not associated with Texas A&M or the Denver Broncos.

I've even got a few suggestions.

There's this guy named Marty Schottenheimer who might make a nice fit for the Texans. Sure, he's never won the Super Bowl, but he has made winning teams out of just about every franchise he's coached (he got a dysfunctional Washington Redskins to finish at .500). And many of these teams have been bad when he took over. While I'd like for the Texans to win the Super Bowl, I think that right now I'd like it even more if they were respectable and something more than mediocre. I'd also like very much for the Texans to no longer be Peyton Manning's plaything.

If you can't get Schottenheimer, then how about that Jon Gruden guy who does Monday Night Football? He got two teams into the playoffs -- he won a Super Bowl with Tampa Bay -- and he knows how to work with mediocre quarterbacks. His teams never appear to have been out-coached or out-prepared. And he's not the cowardly type who turns his back when his kicker tries a field goal like Kubiak does.

I think a lot of people would be happy to see Bill Cowher take the job. He led the Pittsburgh Steelers to two Super Bowls, and he won one of them. He knows how to build a running game, and he's the inspirational type who makes his guys want to perform. He's even said that he would be interested in coaching the Texans if the price was right. I say make that price right.

Or maybe you can talk to NBC and see if Tony Dungy would be interested in coming out of his retirement. If anybody knows how to deal with Peyton Manning, then it should be Dungy. He's a good defensive coach, and his Colts were one of the NFL's best offensive teams since he took over as coach. And here's a strong point in his favor. He's a big Christian, and owner Bob McNair has let it be known that he's more interested in good character than he is in winning. But with Dungy, the Texans could get a guy of great moral character who actually knows how to win some football games.

Brian Billick might also be a good choice for the job. He's shown that he can win a Super Bowl with an awful quarterback who wears the number eight, so there's no telling what he can do with a merely mediocre QB like Matt Schaub who also wears the number eight. He also helped to put together a powerful defense that was known more for hard hits than it was for stupid penalties.

But please, don't give the job to Mike Shanahan. Sure he won two Super Bowls, but he won those two Super Bowls when John Elway was the quarterback. So unless he's bringing along a 29-year-old version of Elway, it's probably best to leave him alone.

So that's it, Santa. I hope that you can help out. And while you're at it, do you think maybe you can toss in a stud running back like that guy out of Stanford and maybe a few defensive backs who actually know what they're doing?


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