The more time I spend working in the NFL, the more I'm learning how small this world really is.
These fraternities of coaches, players and personnel all have a history, and within that past lies a multitude of connections. You see it manifest on Sunday, where pre and post-game serve as mini-reunions for friends to catch up after their work on the field is done.
It isn't hard to connect the dots. The nomadic nature of the profession lends itself to meeting lots of people, and in turn those paths cross again in the future. This Sunday's game in Oakland is the perfect example.
The Oakland Raiders have three quarterbacks on their roster. Their ages are 33, 24 and 23. They went to colleges in Virginia, California and Pennsylvania. Yet, despite all the visible differences between the three, each has a history that runs deep within the Texans franchise.
We'll start at the top.
The Raiders starting quarterback on Sunday?
None other than Derek Carr. As any Texans fan knows, Derek is the younger brother of former Houston starter David Carr, who the Texans selected with the first overall pick in 2002. The younger Carr was a fixture around the organization during his brother's run in Houston.
Voice of the Texans Marc Vandermeer always tells the story of 'warming up' with Derek after practices, not knowing he was tossing the ball around with a future starting signal caller in the NFL. Carr was a second-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft (36th overall), and beat out the presumed starter for the job.
That QB also has a well versed Houston history.
By now you know Schaub's story. Despite how his tenure in Houston ended, Schaub still remains the best quarterback in the franchise's short history, taking this team to heights never before seen. He is tops in the team's record book in nearly every passing category, including passing yards (23,221) and touchdowns (124). You can't talk about Texans history and not mention Schaub's name. His imprint will remain on the franchise long after his career is over.
That is not debatable.
The third quarterback on the Raiders depth chart is Matt McGloin. If his name sounds vaguely familiar, rewind back to the 2013 season. McGloin, as a rookie, came into then Reliant Stadium and led the silver and black to a 28-23 win. He threw for 197 yards and three touchdowns on that day, adding to what would become a 14-game losing streak for the Texans. But, that's not where the connections end.
McGloin spent his college years playing at Penn State, including his senior year for a brand new head coach. You see where this is going, right? That new coach was none other than Bill O'Brien, who is now the head man in Houston.
Talk about a small world.