This offseason, the Houston Texans' pursuit of New England Patriots executive Nick Caserio was the root cause of some drama between the two teams. As the Texans tried to lure Caserio to Houston to become their next general manager, the Patriots filed tampering charges against their AFC rival and ultimately stopped their pursuit dead in its tracks.
However, though the tampering charges were considered to be "water under the bridge" by Bill Belichick, it was widely expected that the Texans would have renewed interest in Caserio following the season when his contract with the Patriots expires. It no longer appears that will be the case.
According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Texans are planning on sticking with the current structure they have in their front office. They're no longer interested in adding Caserio and will continue on with Bill O'Brien and Jack Easterby running things.
Sources say that the Texans plan to continue this offseason and beyond with their current personnel structure rather than hire a true general manager in title. Coach Bill O'Brien has final say, though he essentially works with the team's executive VP of team development Jack Easterby to be in charge of football operations.
Rapoport went on to detail the unique structure of the GM-less front office and seemed to indicate that the moves the Texans have pulled off in trading for Laremy Tunsil, Carlos Hyde, and Duke Johnson while trading away Jadeveon Clowney have solidified the notion that they want to keep the status quo in the front office. So, that would mean that Caserio wouldn't be part of the plans.
Of course, things could change for the Texans and it's possible that they could have a change of heart if Caserio becomes available, given the interest they showed in him last offseason. But if that interest has diminished, it could give the Patriots a better chance to keep him around.
That said, it's also possible that Caserio could be ready to move onto another front office when his contract expires. And certainly, if any team moves on from a high-ranking personnel man or GM, he could garner interest from them. So, if the Patriots want to keep him around, they'll still have work to do.
Either way, Caserio's status moving forward will remain a source of intrigue, whether it's related to the Texans or not. The Patriots still have a big decision to make about his future.
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