Texans LB Kamu Grugier-Hill says Lovie Smith is ‘same ole’ despite promotion to coach

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The Houston Texans’ strategy with the 2022 coaching hire was to implement as much change as possible without sacrificing any of the continuity and cohesion forged in the 2021 campaign.

After a month-long coaching search following the firing of David Culley after one season, Houston went in-house with the promotion of defensive coordinator and associate head coach Lovie Smith to the big role.

Linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill says nothing has changed in terms of Smith’s personality and demeanor now that he has added responsibility.

“It’s funny because last year he was obviously our defensive coordinator, so we spent all our time with him,” Grugier-Hill told reporters after the second day of practice at Houston Methodist Training Center. “The offense wasn’t with him, so they didn’t really know him too much. So, for us, it’s like normal, right. It’s just the same ‘ole Lovie.”

Grugier-Hill, who led the Texans with 108 combined tackles, is on his fourth NFL team and has played under the likes of Bill Belichick, Doug Pederson, and Brian Flores. The 28-year-old from Eastern Illinois has a frame of reference when it comes to coaches, and Smith has been exceptional.

“[Smith] as a head coach, it’s actually really impressive to me,” said Grugier-Hill. “Because I knew how he was and I’ve heard stories that he’s an amazing coach, but to see it and be living it now, he’s on top of everything. The way he holds himself is amazing. We’re just very excited, and I’m just extremely happy to have him as a head coach.”

In terms of Smith being “same ole,” Grugier-Hill elaborated on how it relates to his laid back, positive approach.

Said Grugier-Hill: “Just happy going. He’s always cracking jokes. But you know, at the end of the day, he has a high expectation, and he truthfully I think brings the best out of everyone. He pushes everyone in the right ways and just brings greatness out of everyone.”

The Texans are hopeful that having “same ole” Smith helps the team propel beyond the same ole four win total that has plagued the organization the last two seasons.

Story originally appeared on Texans Wire