By Elwyn Henderson
Big Sandy native Lovie Smith began his first Training Camp as the Head Coach of the Houston Texans Friday at the Texans Training Facility across Kirby Street from NRG Stadium with 91 players on the first day roster.
He addressed the media following the first day of practice and outlined his expectations for the 2022 season in his opening statements.
“I think every year you start everybody has the same goal, you know, to win the Super Bowl. But we want to play our best ball. You want to see what this roster looks like. We as coaches have to do a better job; the best job we’ve ever done coaching. And then our talent, wherever our talent says we should be, that’s where we want to be; that’s just come to work each day and getting better and farther along.”
“We have a lot of our things that we want to do—offense, defense special teams, and we want to get it installed and we want to see when we go through Training Camp, start playing preseason games, and get into the season and see what we’re supposed to do.”
We had an opportunity to ask Lovie during his presser about his visit back to Gilmer a couple of months ago and his stop at Doc’s Hot Links for the first time in 50 years and what that meant to him. He chuckled and began by addressing the Houston media in attendance about East Texas.
“Y’all don’t know anything about Doc’s Hot Links! It was good to get back. It brought back memories just like that. (It is) one of the best places, of course, to eat. There’s no bad meals down there in East Texas. I know that!”
His response just shows you what a quality individual he is. He is and always has been a people person, and is also a great coach who deserves this opportunity in the latter part of his career.
There have been a lot of negatives in recent years with Bill O’Brien trading away D’Andre Hopkins and then being fired, to David Culley being given only one year at the helm and all of the negativity around Deshaun Watson with is legal battles, so Lovie Smith is a breath of fresh air to the Texans and all their fans.
After his press conference, Lovie went up the portable stands where fans had just watched the first practice of camp and talked with them and even took pictures with them and signed autographs for them.
Expectations for the team’s success in 2022 are not high among NFL pundits, but Lovie has brought a new area of excitement and positivity to H’Town. Don’t be surprised if the team wins 7 or 8 games this year. IF that happens, the future will look good and Lovie will remain as head coach. EVERYONE in East Texas is hoping and praying that is just what evolves!