The drama between the Texans and Patriots appears to be over. New England has agreed to drop the tampering charges against Houston, and the Texans have agreed to stop pursuing Nick Caserio for their general manager vacancy, per a statement from Texans owner Cal McNair, via Mark Berman of FOX 26 (Twitter link).
“We have now been made aware of certain terms in Nick’s contract with the Patriots. Once we were made aware of these contract terms, I informed Mr. [Robert] Kraft that we would stop pursuing Nick,” McNair’s statement reads in part. As soon as Houston fired Brian Gaine, word leaked that they preferred Caserio, a Patriots exec, for the job. The Texans tried interviewing Caserio the last time they had a vacancy, and the Patriots blocked it. New England clearly values Caserio very highly, and they weren’t going to let him get away easily this time either.
On Wednesday, the Patriots officially filed tampering charges with the league. The Texans announced the firing of Gaine the same day as the Patriots’ ring ceremony, which reportedly setoff some alarm bells in New England. For a while yesterday, it seemed like the Patriots and Texans might come to an agreement where Houston would send over a draft pick in return for Caserio, but that turned out not to be the case.
McNair’s public statement would seem to suggest that the Patriots had a legitimate case with their tampering charge, and the Texans didn’t want to risk discipline from the league. With Caserio of the list, the Texans will move forward with several known candidates to replace Gaine. We heard earlier this week that in addition to interviewing former Lions GM Martin Mayhew and former Browns GM Ray Farmer, the team was also interested in former Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie, Patriots director of college scouting Monti Ossenfort, and former Chiefs GM Scott Pioli