Former Texans offensive coordinator Tim Kelly interviewed for the Carolina Panthers' offensive coordinator vacancy along with Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Luke Getsy, according to league sources not authorized to speak publicly.
Kelly and head coach David Culley were fired after a 4-13 season on Thursday, according to sources.
The Texans have a strong in-house potential replacement for Tim Kelly in passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton. Whether he ascends to the role will ultimately hinge on the new head coach's conversations with management, per sources.
Hamilton has also been requested for an interview with the Panthers, according to a source, with no interview confirmed.
The Texans finished 30th in scoring offense, averaging 16.5 points per game. They ranked last in total offense and last in rushing offense.
The run-first offense was predictable under Kelly, who was hamstrung by a weak running game and the absence of Pro Bowl quarterback Deshaun Watson after he requested a trade and encountered legal problems.
A former Penn State assistant who coached tight ends previously for the Texans before former coach and general manager Bill O'Brien promoted him to offensive coordinator, Kelly tried to make it work with quarterbacks Tyrod Taylor and rookie Davis Mills, who had some success and displayed encouraging signs at the end of the season.
A year ago, the Texans led the NFL in passing yardage behind Watson with Kelly calling the plays and operating a free-wheeling offense. This season, the Texans struggled mightily.
Kelly returned after Watson strongly endorsed him and was a holdover for a new coaching staff led by Culley. The Texans retained Kelly after denying interview requests from other teams interested in him as an offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach candidate. Kelly was one of the first coaches that general manager Nick Caserio met with upon taking the job.
The lack of productivity has worn on Kelly, players and other coaches, but it hasn't been for a lack of effort.
Other than a season-high 189 rushing yards during an upset victory over the Los Angeles Chargers, there weren't a lot of successful performances from the ground game. And that has hamstrung the entire offense that was built around establishing the run and protecting the football.
“It’s been frustrating at times, for sure," Kelly said prior to coaching his final game with the Texans. "Obviously, the results haven’t been what we want them to be, but the guys have really come in every single day and working and doing everything that we’ve asked them to do. While results haven’t been there, being able to come in every day and practice and work with them, it’s been great. They’ve attacked practice every day with the type of intensity and urgency that we need them to."