Texans Fire Former Browns Head Coach

Offensive coordinator Chris Palmer has been let go by the Texans after the second game of the season.

Chris Palmer, former head coach on the Browns, has been fired as the offensive coordinator of the Houston Texans.

Palmer had served as the Texans offensive coordinator since the Houston team joined the league in 2002, joining the team well in advance of the expansion outfit's first game. 

Palmer served as the Browns head coach during a brief two-year period at the beginning of the expansion era. Palmer was relieved early in 2001 when Browns President Carmen Policy, along with the late Al Lerner, persuaded Butch Davis to leave his post at the University of Miami to coach the Browns.

Palmer was clearly not the group's first choice, as evidenced by an embarrassing incident where Dwight Clark attempted to bring Brian Billick to Cleveland to finalize a contract. Billick refused to go, deciding instead to work for Art Modell in Baltimore. Credited with helping to develop Drew Bledsoe in New England, Palmer represented a fallback choice for the Browns.

Palmer appears to be mostly remembered for his hasty decision to insert Tim Couch into the line-up for the expansion Browns during the second game of their expansion season in 1999. Following a blow-out 43-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Palmer quickly replaced previous starter Ty Detmer with Couch. The number one draft pick struggled to perform effectively in guiding a weak offensive lineup, and has never been able to get his career on-track.

Prior to this season, Palmer's stint in Houston had appeared to be a vindication for his quick firing in Cleveland.

Like in Cleveland, Palmer attempted to fashion an offense around a number one selection in the draft (David Carr), and had met with some success in helping the Texans to become a competitive team in 2003 and 2004.

The Texans, however, opened the 2005 season against two tough defensive teams (Buffalo, Pittsburgh) and accumulated very poor offensive numbers in losing to both. The Texans had scored a single touchdown against both opponents, and had averaged less than 200 yards per game.

Offensive line coach Joe Pendry was named as Palmer's replacement.

Related links:

Houston Chronicle: Texans Fire Play-Caller Palmer
Associated Press: Texans Fire Offensive Coordinator

The OBR Top Stories