Houston Texans CEO Cal McNair wants Deshaun Watson part of hiring process for coach

HOUSTON -- A week after Houston Texans chairman and CEO Cal McNair said he hadn't heard back from quarterback Deshaun Watson since hiring general manager Nick Caserio, McNair said he has now "connected over texts" with Watson.

"It's no secret he's disappointed in the communication during the hiring process," McNair said, according to an interview with the Houston Chronicle and Fox 26 Houston.

On the day the Texans announced the hiring of Caserio, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Watson was not happy with the process because, according to league sources, "Watson offered input on potential general manager candidates, but the Texans neither considered nor consulted with those endorsed by their franchise quarterback."

Now, McNair says the Texans "want [Watson] in the loop and part of the process" as Houston searches for its next head coach. Watson found out on social media, not from the team, that the Texans had hired Caserio, multiple sources told Schefter.

In the interview, McNair also said he will not fire Jack Easterby, the Texans' executive vice president of football operations. Earlier in the week, former Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson tweeted that he stood by Watson and criticized Easterby.

"The Texans organization is known for wasting players careers," Johnson tweeted. "Since Jack Easterby has walk into the building nothing good has happened in/for the organization and for some reason someone can't seem to see what's going on. Pathetic!!!"

McNair initially said Easterby would not be involved in the process of hiring the Texans' next general manager, but he said in Caserio's introductory news conference that he did ask for Easterby's feedback "on Nick as a leader" during the decision process.

"Jack and I have had a really special relationship," Caserio said. "It goes back a number of years. ... I have a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for him. Any personnel decisions that will be made we'll make as a group, but ultimately that's a responsibility that Cal has instilled in me, is to handle the personnel side of the football operations. So that's the expectation moving forward."

Schefter also reported that after the Texans traded wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, Watson's anger level was "a 2. ... This time, it's a 10."

On Friday, Watson tweeted, "I was on 2 then I took it to 10." Less than 30 minutes later, Watson tweeted, "Future - Mo Reala vibes!" That song contains the lyrics, "I was on 2 then I took it to 10."

"Change is hard and we're going through change and I accept everything hasn't gone perfectly," McNair said in the interview. "It's just hard and we're working through it. If players, media and fans are upset, that's on me and I'll apologize for my actions or communications that have created mistrust and I accept those team's and fan's frustrations."