Texans Team History
The Texans didn't hit the field until 2002 but there's plenty of history leading up to that point. Here's a look at the franchise's timeline from infancy to its fifth NFL season.
June 18: The NHL bypasses Chuck Watson and Bob McNair's efforts to bring an expansion hockey club to Houston. The pair moves on to their next project - returning the NFL to Houston.
July 3: Houston Oilers owner Bud Adams gets the green light to move his team to Nashville, Tennessee. U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes signs the final consent judgment in the lawsuit against the team after all parties involved agree to a settlement.
October 15: NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue praises the early plans of Bob McNair and Houston for an expansion franchise at the NFL Owners' Meetings.
October 17: In reaction to Tagliabue's comments, officials from the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (HLS&R) say they will push for the building of a domed stadium that the Rodeo will share with an NFL team, as opposed to renovating the Astrodome. It marks the Rodeo's first public statement in support of McNair's efforts.
March 23: The NFL expansion committee awards an expansion team to Cleveland. McNair, Harris County Judge Robert Eckels and Mayor Lee Brown meet with Tagliabue for the first time as a group at the owners' meeting held in Houston.
May 7: Los Angeles-based entertainment broker Michael Ovitz announces he will spearhead a $750-million proposal to build a stadium in Carson, California, in an effort to bring the NFL back to L.A.
June 30: Tagliabue and NFL Stadium Committee head Jerry Richardson visit Houston to see plans for the city's retractable-roof stadium, meeting for several hours with McNair, Houston Sports Authority Jack Rains, Brown, Eckels and HLS&R president Jim Bloodworth.
September 25: The HLS&R votes unanimously to approve paying a $1.5 million annual lease to use the proposed retractable-roof NFL stadium.
October 27: Tagliabue announces that NFL owners will have a decision on the league's newest expansion team by April.
February 16: The NFL Expansion Committee meets, but does not pick a winning bidder from the three finalists. Tagliabue says the decision will come within a month.
March 16: The NFL Expansion Committee votes 29-2 to give Los Angeles until September 15 to work out a feasible stadium and ownership plan. If L.A. cannot get a plan together, the committee will then recommend Houston for the 32nd franchise.
May 25: Ovitz unveils a new plan for a 60-acre spread of parks, parking garages and a new stadium where the Los Angeles Coliseum currently sits. The plan impresses the NFL, but the league remains concerned about a lack of financial planning for the proposed project.
June 3: In a two-hour meeting with Tagliabue, McNair is encouraged to step up his efforts for an expansion team.
July 28: Los Angeles presents an exclusive negotiating agreement to the NFL but the league does not sign it, stating that it does not address the financial situation behind the New Coliseum at Exposition Park.
September 9: NFL executives tell the Houston group to be prepared to come to the owners' meetings in Atlanta on October 6.
September 28: Marvin Davis, one of the bidders for the Los Angeles franchise, bows out of the expansion race.
October 6: The National Football League owners vote 29-0 to award the 32nd NFL franchise to Houston and Bob McNair for a record amount of $700 million.
Houston owner Bob McNair at a press conference after the NFL awarded Houston its 32nd franchise.
November, 1999: McNair and Houston NFL executives start the first of 40 separate focus group sessions, which eventually total 500 individual participants. The sessions are conducted not just in Houston, but in Galveston, Austin, Beaumont, San Antonio and Corpus Christi as well. Fans are asked for their opinions on the image of Houston and its surrounding areas, the image of the NFL and the expectations for the Houston franchise.
November 24: Houston NFL debuts "transition" logo, which serves as the organization's mark until a team name is selected, and the corresponding official logo, team colors and uniform are developed. The "transition" logo is created by NFL Properties, the New York-based licensing and marketing arm of the NFL.
Bob McNair announces that Charley Casserly will become Houston's first general manager.
January 19: Houston NFL hires Charley Casserly as Executive Vice President/General Manager. Casserly comes to Houston after 23 years with the Washington Redskins, the last 10 as general manager. The Redskins captured Super Bowls XVII, XXII and XXVI during his tenure in Washington.
February: The National Football League begins researching and developing computerized designs for potential logos. Additional focus groups are conducted in Houston and San Antonio.March 2: Houston NFL announces that its team name search has been narrowed to five choices: Apollos, Bobcats, Stallions, Texans and Wildcatters. The five names were determined after several months of research conducted jointly by Houston NFL 2002 and National Football League Properties. That research included multiple focus group studies performed in both English and Spanish in not only Houston, but also in numerous surrounding markets such as San Antonio, Austin, Galveston and Beaumont.
March 9: Houston NFL 2002 celebrates the official groundbreaking of the new stadium that will house the team when it begins play in 2002. The 69,500-seat state-of-the-art facility will be the world's first retractable-roof football stadium. Houston NFL 2002 will be a co-tenant of the new stadium with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. Participants in the groundbreaking ceremony include Owner Bob McNair, NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo President Mike Wells, Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Commissioner Steve Hatchell, Houston Mayor Lee Brown, Harris County Judge Robert Eckels, Harris County Commissioner (Precinct 1) El Franco Lee, Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation Chairman Mike Surface and Harris County-Houston Sports Authority Chairman Billy Burge.
April: The list of five team names is shaved to three - Apollos, Stallions and Texans. Color logo designs are presented to focus groups for feedback.
July: McNair reviews logo designs and colors for all three potential names.
August 10: McNair and other club officials view the final proofs of the selected team logo at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. NFL Properties conducts television and photo testing of the logo as well.
September 6: The NFL's 32nd franchise is officially christened the Houston Texans before thousands at a downtown rally on Texas Avenue. NFL Commissioner Tagliabue introduces McNair, who then unveils his team's name, colors and logo to the crowd. The ceremony, televised live on ESPN2, includes simultaneous unveilings in Austin and San Antonio. McNair then heads to Enron Field, where he throws out the first "pitch" (actually a Texans football) to Houston Astros Owner Drayton McLane before the Astros play the Florida Marlins.
September 7: The Texans are honored by the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in Waco. Club officials present the Hall of Fame with a Texans helmet, football and other merchandise, which is placed in a display case in the football wing of the Hall of Fame.
October 26: Reliant Energy acquires the naming rights for Houston's new state-of-the-art football stadium and the sports, entertainment and convention complex currently known as the Astrodomain Complex. Reliant Energy's 32-year agreement to acquire the naming rights for five different buildings and the complex is the most comprehensive naming rights agreement in history. Reliant Park will be a partnership of mutual support between the Harris County Sports and Convention Corporation, the Houston Texans, RodeoHouston and Reliant Energy. The facilities at Reliant Park will include Reliant Stadium, Reliant Astrodome, Reliant Arena, Reliant Hall and Reliant Center.November 1: At its owners' meetings in Atlanta, the NFL announces that Reliant Stadium will host Super Bowl XXXVIII on February 1, 2004. Houston becomes the seventh city to host multiple Super Bowls. Rice Stadium hosted Super Bowl VIII in 1974.
January 21: The Texans introduce Dom Capers as the club's first head coach. Capers comes to Houston from Jacksonville, where he served the previous two seasons as the Jaguars' defensive coordinator. From 1995-98, Capers was the head coach of the expansion Carolina Panthers, leading the team to the NFC West title and a berth in the NFC Championship Game in 1996.
February 2: Chris Palmer is hired as the Texans' first offensive coordinator. Palmer spent the previous two seasons as head coach of the expansion Cleveland Browns.
May 22: The NFL announces its realignment plan for the 2002 season at league meetings in Chicago. The league will realign into eight four-team divisions. The Texans are placed in the AFC South with Indianapolis, Jacksonville and Tennessee.
Dusty Hill, Eric Dickerson and A.J. Foyt on stage at the uniform unveiling.
June 12: Bob McNair and Titans owner Bud Adams each donate $100,000 to the Red Cross in an effort to aid Houston flood victims. NFL Charities matches the donation. More than 20,000 Houston-area families were displaced from their homes by raging flood waters the previous weekend.
August 15: The NFL announces its new schedule rotation for 2002. In addition to their home-and-home series with AFC South rivals Indianapolis, Jacksonville and Tennessee, the Texans will host Baltimore, Cincinnati, Dallas, the New York Giants and the fourth-place team from the AFC East in 2002. Houston will then travel to Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Washington and the fourth-place team in the AFC West.
September 25: The Texans unveil their team uniforms before a crowd of 12,000 fans in downtown Houston. Local dignitaries and numerous Texan celebrities join Bob McNair on stage for the ceremony. The Houston Texans Cheerleaders also make their debut.
November 5: The Texans hold their first individual workout session at Reliant Astrodome, evaluating 13 defensive backs.
December 29: The Texans sign their first 10 players to contracts -- running back Michael Basnight, saefty Leomont Evans, tackle Robert Hicks, defensive tackle Jason Nikolao, quarterback Mike Quinn, fullback Matt Snider, cornerback Jason Suttle, linebacker Casey Tisdale, safety Kevin Williams and tackle Jerry Wisne.
January 14: The Texans hire former Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Vic Fangio as their first defensive coordinator.
February 18: The Texans select T Tony Boselli, T Ryan Young, CB Aaron Glenn, DT Gary Walker, LB Jamie Sharper, WR Jermaine Lewis, CB Marcus Coleman, DT Seth Payne, G Matt Campbell, S Matt Stevens, G Jeremy McKinney, T Ryan Schau, RB Charlie Rogers, TE/LS Sean McDermott, DE Jabari Issa, WR Avion Black, QB Danny Wuerffel, LB Brian Allen and TE Johnny Huggins in the expansion draft.
March 4: The Texans execute the first trade in club history, shipping QB Danny Wuerffel to Washington in exchange for DT Jerry DeLoach.
March 6: The Texans sign their first unrestricted free agent, inking former Colts offensive lineman Steve McKinney.
March 25: The Texans start their first off-season workout program at Reliant Astrodome. All 65 players report.
April 20: The Texans select Fresno State quarterback David Carr with the first overall selection of the 2002 NFL Draft. Carr flies back to Houston from New York that afternoon to sign a seven-year contract. He is the first of 12 players Houston selects over seven rounds.
April 26: The Texans open their first mini-camp with 99 players, including 25 rookies.
April 28: The Texans launch their first Texans Outreach Tour, taking players to Austin, Beaumont, College Station, Corpus Christi and Lufkin over a five-day stretch.
July 20: Ninety-seven players report for the Texans' first-ever training camp. Camp is held at the club's training facility in Houston. The players go through conditioning drills the following day before hitting the practice field on July 22.
August 5: In their first preseason game, the Texans fall to the New York Giants 34-17 in the annual Pro Football Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio. Kris Brown kicks a 22-yard field goal for Houston's first points. TE Billy Miller and WR Sherrod Gideon follow with touchdown receptions.
August 10: The Texans record their first preseason win, defeating the New Orleans Saints 13-10 at the Louisiana Superdome.
August 24: The Texans open Reliant Stadium with a 24-3 preseason loss to the Miami Dolphins.
September 8: The Texans become the first NFL team in 41 years to win their expansion debut, stunning the Dallas Cowboys 19-10 before 69,604 at Reliant Stadium. QB David Carr throws two touchdown passes, including a 19-yarder to TE Billy Miller for the club's first-ever touchdown. DT Seth Payne sacks Cowboys QB Quincy Carter in the end zone for a safety to clinch the victory.
October 27: The Texans win on the road for the first time, defeating Jacksonville 21-19 at ALLTEL Stadium. K Kris Brown nails a 45-yard field goal with 2:11 remaining to provide the winning points.
December 8: Despite just 47 yards of total offense, the Texans shock eventual AFC North champion Pittsburgh 24-6 at Heinz Field. All three of Houston's touchdowns are scored by the defense - two interception returns by CB Aaron Glenn and a fumble return by CB Kenny Wright. The 47 yards mark the lowest output by a winning team in NFL history.
December 19: CB Aaron Glenn and DE Gary Walker are selected to represent the AFC in the 2003 Pro Bowl. It is the third selection for Glenn (1997, 1998) and the second for Walker (2001). The Texans tie the 1961 Vikings for the most players selected on an expansion team and become the first expansion club to be represented since the Saints in 1967, when all teams were required to have at least one player selected.
February 2: CB Aaron Glenn and DE Gary Walker start for the AFC in the Pro Bowl and help their conference to a 45-20 win before 50,125 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.
February 13: Texans general manager Charley Casserly is named to the NFL's Competition Committee for the second time in his 25-year NFL career.
April 26: The Texans use the third overall selection of the 2003 NFL Draft to pick Miami WR Andre Johnson, who caught 22 touchdowns passes in three seasons with the Hurricanes.
Sept. 7: The Texans become the first NFL expansion team to win two consecutive regular season openers, stunning the heavily-favored Dolphins 21-20 in Miami. K Kris Brown hits a game-winning 35-yard FG in the final minute.
Sept. 21: The Texans, in conjunction with Siemens and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, open a photography exhibit entitled First Down Houston: The Birth of an NFL Franchise. The exhibit features 86 black-and-white photos taken by Robert Clark, who followed the Texans throughout their inaugural season.
Sept. 28: QB David Carr leaps over the goal line from one yard out on the game's final play, lifting Houston to s 24-20 win over Jacksonville at Reliant Stadium. Dom Capers is named Staples NFL Coach of the Week for his decision to go for the touchdown.
Nov. 13: After rushing for 104 yards and one touchdown in Houston's loss to Cincinnati, rookie RB Domanick Williams (Davis) wins his fourth consecutive NFL Rookie of the Week honor, the first in league history to do so.
Jan. 29: RB Domanick Williams (Davis) is named NFL Rookie of the Year at a press conference at the George R. Brown Convention Center. NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue is on hand to present Davis the trophy.
Feb. 1: Reliant Stadium hosts one of the most exciting Super Bowls ever as New England defeats Carolina 32-29 in Super Bowl XXXVIII. Patriots K Adam Vinatieri nails a 41-yard FG with four seconds remaining to give his team the win.
Mar. 4: The Texans sign three unrestricted free agents, inking former Titans DT Robaire Smith, former Dolphins T Todd Wade and re-signing G Todd Washington.
Mar. 31: NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue selects Bob McNair to chair a new league committee that will study revenue and costs.
April 24: The Texans select twice in the first round of the NFL Draft for the first time in club history, using the 10th pick to select South Carolina CB Dunta Robinson and trading up to get Tennessee’s first-round pick (27th overall), where Houston selected Western Michigan LB Jason Babin.
Oct. 3: The Texans defeat the Raiders 30-17 at Reliant Stadium to notch back-to-back wins for the first time in their history. Houston had defeated Kansas City 24-21 the previous Sunday.
Nov. 28: The Texans rally from a 21-3 deficit to defeat the Titans 31-21 at Reliant Stadium, earning their first-ever sweep of a division opponent.
Dec. 26: Houston records its first-ever shutout win, blanking the Jaguars 21-0 at ALLTEL Stadium for its seventh win of the season.
Feb. 13: WR Andre Johnson becomes the first Texans offensive player to play in the Pro Bowl, making one catch for 24 yards in the AFC’s 38-27 win over the NFC.
April 21: The Texans trade their second-round pick in the 2005 draft and one of their two third-round picks to Oakland in exchange for CB Phillip Buchanon.
April 23: After trading down from the 13th overall selection to the 16th pick, the Texans draft Florida State DT Travis Johnson.
Dec. 21: Rookie KR Jerome Mathis is selected to the Pro Bowl, joining Chargers LB Shawne Merriman as one of only two rookies to make the squad.
Jan. 2: The Texans dismiss Dom Capers as head coach one day after Houston completes the 2005 season with a 2-14 record. Capers leaves after four seasons with a record of 18-46.
January 26: The Texans hire former Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak as the second head coach in team history. Kubiak, a Houston native, has led the Broncos offensive attack for the past 11 seasons. His offense has totaled 66,501 yards from scrimmage, most in the NFL over the past 11 years. His offense scored 465 touchdowns over the same time span to lead the NFL.
January 30: Houston hires Troy Calhoun as the offensive coordinator.
February 2: The Texans hire Richard Smith as the defensive coordinator.
February 15: Head coach Gary Kubiak announces the completion of his coaching staff with the hiring of Assistant Head Coach/Offense Mike Sherman. The former Packers head coach caps off a staff that has 16 coaches average more than nine years of NFL coaching experience.
April 6: The Texans traded a fifth-round pick (134th overall) in the 2006 NFL Draft to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for WR Eric Moulds.
April 28: Houston signs North Carolina State DE Mario Williams to a six-year contract.
April 29: The Texans select DE Mario Williams number-one overall in the 2006 NFL Draft. Williams joins QB David Carr at the team’s second number-one overall player taken in the draft.
May 10: Texans general manager Charley Casserly announces he will resign his position with the team effective June 1.
June 5: The Texans name Rick Smith the second general manager in team history. Smith joins Houston from the Denver Broncos, where he was the assistant general manager.
Oct. 1: The Texans defeat the Miami Dolphoins 17-15 at Reliant Stadium to give Gary Kubiak his first win as an NFL head coach.
Dec. 19: Wide receiver Andre Johnson is named as a Pro Bowl starter. It's Johnson's second selection to the Pro Bowl in three seasons and first starting nod for a Texans player in team history.
Dec. 24: The Texans defeat the Indianapolis Colts 27-24 at Reliant Stadium giving Houston the first win over Indy in franchise history. The Colts went on to win Super Bowl XLI.
Dec. 31: The Texans defeat the Cleveland Browns 14-6 at Reliant Stadium giving Houston back-to-back wins for the first time in two seasons. The victory also marched the first ever on the last weekend of the season.
Jan. 3: Linebacker DeMeco Ryans is named AP Defensive Rookie of the Year. Ryans recieves 72 percent of the vote to become the first Texans player to win the award.
Jan. 17: The Texans promote assistant head coach/offense Mike Sherman to assistant head coach/offensive cooridinator. Sherman replaces Troy Calhoun who left after the season to become head coach at the Air Force Academy. The Texans also promote wide receivers coach Kyle Shanahan to quarterbacks coach.
Jan. 23: The Texans hire Jethro Franklin as defensive line coach and Larry Kirskey as wide receivers coach.
Jan. 25: The Texans hire Frank Bush as senior defensive assistant.
March 5: The Texans sign free agent running back Ahman Green. Green, a four-time Pro Bowl selection, comes to Houston from the Green Bay Packers.
March 7: The Texans hire Frank Pollack as offensive line coach.
March 23: The Texans trade for quarterback Matt Schaub and announce that David Carr will be traded prior to the start of the 2007 season. Houston sends Atlanta its second round draft picks in the 2007 and 2008 NFL Draft in exhange for the three-year veteran. The two teams also swap position in the first round of the 2007 draft with Houston moving to 10th overall and Atlanta moving to eighth.