Heading into his third NFL season, Deshaun Watson will be working with a new position coach. While Carl Smith may be new to the Texans, the former assistant coach to Pete Carroll brings 35 years of NFL experience to Houston's quarterbacks room.
"I've known Carl for a number of years," head coach Bill O'Brien said in an interview with Texans Radio. "If you look at his résumé, he's coached in a lot of different systems. He's coached for different head coaches, primarily most recently for Pete Carroll who I have a ton of respect for out in Seattle, and also coached for Pete at Southern Cal. Carl has worked with a number of different types of quarterbacks. He's called plays in systems, in different systems. He's been in this system. He was in this system when he was in Cleveland."
Smith most recently served on the Seahawks coaching staff as quarterbacks coach (2011-17), assuming the role of associate head coach in 2018. Under Smith's tenure, Russell Wilson developed from a rookie into the third-youngest quarterback to win a Super Bowl when he lead Seattle to a 43-8 win over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII. Through seven years with Smith as his position coach, Wilson has thrown 196 touchdown passes and rushed for 16 touchdowns with an average passer rating of 100.7. Smith has served on several of Carroll's coaching staffs throughout his career. He worked with Drew Bledsoe during their time together in New England, as well as Matt Leinart during USC's national championship run in 2004.
"He's had tremendous success with a number of different quarterbacks and he has excellent relationships with all the quarterbacks that he's coached," O'Brien said of Smith. "We spent a lot of time together basically in a quote unquote interview-type of setting and we feel like he's going to bring a lot to the table with his experience in all the different areas that he's worked in. He's worked as a coordinator, he's worked as a passing game coordinator, he's worked in the running game and he's obviously coached quarterbacks for a lot of years, so we're excited to have him."
Smith is reunited with his son Tracy Smith, now in his second season as the Texans assistant special teams coordinator. Smith replaces Houston's former quarterbacks coach Sean Ryan, who took a coaching position with the Detroit Lions.