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  • Sat., Dec. 23, 2017 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM CST Pappas Pep Party

    Get hyped for Houston Texans gameday at Pappas Pep Party!

    Fans can enjoy appearances by TORO and Houston Texans Cheerleaders, along with chances to win tickets and Texans gear courtesy of Coca-Cola and Pappas.

    Pappas Pep Party 6-8pm:

    Pappas Burger at 5815 Westheimer Rd, Houston TX 77057

Coaches

Jim Bernhardt
Director of Football Research

Jim Bernhardt is in his fourth season as the Director of Football Research with the Houston Texans. In his position, Bernhardt takes on an advisory role to Head Coach Bill O’Brien, assisting in all aspects of game preparation, management, and review both on and off the field.

Jim Bernhardt is in his fourth season as the Director of Football Research with the Houston Texans. In his position, Bernhardt takes on an advisory role to Head Coach Bill O’Brien, assisting in all aspects of game preparation, management, and review both on and off the field.

Bernhardt helped the Texans claim back-to-back AFC South division championships in 2015-16 and put together three straight winning seasons for the first time in franchise history (2014-16). Houston won 14 games against AFC South opponents over those three years, tying Kansas City for the most division wins in the NFL over that span. The team also posted 12 home wins from 2015-16, tying for the second most in the league.

Houston’s 7-1 record at home and 5-1 record in the division in 2016 both tied franchise records. The team also won its first postseason game and advanced to the AFC Divisional Round for the first time since 2012. The Texans finished the season with the NFL’s top-ranked defense for the first time in franchise history, surrendering an average of only 301.3 total net yards per game. They also gave up the fewest first downs (17.0) and second-fewest net passing yards (201.6) per game. 

In 2015, the Texans earned their first AFC South division championship since 2012 and became the first NFL team since 1950 to earn a trip to the postseason with four different starting quarterbacks winning at least one regular season game.

On defense, the Texans finished third in the NFL in yards allowed per game (310.2), third in pass yards per game (210.4), fifth in opponent completion percentage (59.0) and seventh in points per game (19.6). The Texans also set the franchise single-season record for sacks (45) and third-down defense (28.5%) in 2015.

In 2014, Houston recorded a seven-win improvement, which led the NFL and made them the sixth team since 1978 to post a winning season following a season in which it won two or less games. The Texans defense led the NFL in takeaways with a franchise-record 34 and became just the third team in the last 20 years to lead the league in takeaways after finishing last the previous season.

On offense, the Texans ran the ball a league-high 51.9 percent of the time and posted an AFC-best eight individual 100-yard rushing performances in 2014. Houston’s 135.1 yards rushing per game ranked fifth in the NFL and was the second-highest mark in franchise history.

Bernhardt came to Houston from Penn State where he served in a similar role under O’Brien as special assistant to the head coach and director of football research. As a chief advisor to O’Brien, Bernhardt reviewed, evaluated and advised on the entire Penn State football program, including practice, game management and planning, compliance, recruiting and football administration.

Prior to his time at Penn State, Bernhardt served as recruiting coordinator and running backs coach at the University of Central Florida from 2005-07 and director of football operations in 2004.

In 2005, the Golden Knights won their first Conference USA Eastern Division title and earned a berth in the university’s first bowl game, the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl, against Nevada. In that matchup, RB Kevin Smith set a Hawaii Bowl record with 202 yards rushing and three touchdowns.

Smith went on to post one of the most prolific seasons in NCAA history for a running back in 2007, rushing for 2,567 yards and 29 touchdowns. His yardage total landed him second on the NCAA all-time single-season rushing list, only behind Barry Sanders’ 1988 season. Smith finished his career as the Golden Knights' all-time leading rusher.

Bernhardt began his collegiate coaching career in 1988-89 as the assistant head coach and defensive coordinator at Hofstra University, where they had nationally-ranked defenses and qualified for the NCAA playoffs both seasons he was there. In 1990, Bernhardt became the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at Brown University, where he coached O’Brien for three seasons before transitioning to the role of offensive coordinator and offensive line coach in 1993.

In addition to coaching the collegiate ranks, Bernhardt also coached at the high school level for 17 years, accumulating a .620 winning percentage despite never inheriting a program with a winning record prior to his arrival. Bernhardt garnered coach of the year honors four times at four different schools over the course of his coaching career.

A graduate of Long Island University, C.W. Post Campus with a degree in physical education, Bernhardt is also a three-time published writer in the Scholastic Coach magazine and a noted clinic speaker. Bernhardt and his wife, Catherine, have been married for 29 years and have three sons, Jake, Jesse and Jared.

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