The Houston Texans have ended their pursuit of New England Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio and in doing so, will avoid tampering charges filed by the Patriots.
In a statement Texans chairman CEO Cal McNair accepted fault for pursuing Caserio in spite of “certain terms” in his contract with the Patriots.
McNair’s statement reads:
“When we started the process to interview for our EVP/GM position, we consulted the League office on numerous occasions, followed the procedures outlined in the League’s rules and believed we were in full compliance. 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. Kraft that we would stop pursuing Nick.”
— Texans PR (@TexansPR) June 14, 2019
Now, the Patriots have dropped their tampering charges against the Texans, per the Houston Chronicle’s John McClain.
Texans withdrawing pursuit of Caserio. Pats dropping tampering charges.
— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) June 14, 2019
Since then, team owner Robert Kraft issued a statement saying, “The Houston Texans and the New England Patriots have always had a great working relationship. We appreciate the way Cal McNair has handled this situation.”
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) June 14, 2019
Caserio has been with the team since 2001.
Texans fire GM Gaine, immediately pursue Caserio
In a surprising move, the Texans parted ways with previous general manager Brian Gaine on June 7 after less than two years on the job.
Five days later on June 12, the team reportedly began zeroing in on Caserio to fill the vacant position.
The Patriots filed tampering charges and the NFL was set to open an investigation before today’s announcement.
The NFL anti-tampering policy states that, “any interference by a member club with the employer-employee relationship of another club or any attempt by a club to impermissibly induce a person to seek employment with that club or with the NFL” is not allowed.
At the time, the Texans reportedly asked permission to speak with Caserio but it had not yet been granted.
Texans could go through 2019-20 without GM
With the pursuit of Caserio effectively over, there is a scenario in which the Texans proceed through the upcoming season without a general manager.
Instead, head coach Bill O’Brien and executive vice president of team development Jack Easterby will handle the role, according to Schefter. The two will work in combination with the Texans’ scouting department.
With Houston dropping its pursuit of Nick Caserio, there now is a scenario under which the Texans will go this season without an official General Manager. For less than a year, Bill O’Brien, Jack Easterby and the scouting dept could divvy up the duties.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) June 14, 2019
Easterby was hired in April after several seasons with the Patriots as a character coach.
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