The Texans have hired Karl Dorrell as their new quarterbacks coach, the team announced today. He replaces Greg Knapp, who left last week to become offensive coordinator of the Oakland Raiders.
A former head coach at UCLA, Dorrell worked with Texans coach Gary Kubiak and several Texans offensive assistants in Denver from 2000-02, coaching the Broncos’ wide receivers while Kubiak was offensive coordinator. Kubiak thinks he will be an excellent fit with quarterback .
“My first thought when I’m hiring somebody at that position is with Matt,” Kubiak said. “I know their personalities will mesh easily. They’re both grinders on football, so they’ll be very compatible from that standpoint. And then the other part was obviously the fact that Karl does know my system and how I teach and what I do because he’s been with me before. He’s very familiar with a lot of people on our staff.”
Dorrell also coached in Denver with Texans offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, wide receivers coach Larry Kirksey and tight ends coach Brian Pariani. He even coached Texans defensive backs coach Vance Joseph at Colorado from 1992-93.
“This is an instant fit,” Kubiak said. “Karl walked in here today and signed the contract and I’ve (already) got him working, so it’s not like we’re having to adapt a total stranger to what we do. We’re just very fortunate to get him. I’ve been trying to get him here for a couple years, as a matter of fact, and it finally worked out.”
Dorrell was prevented from interviewing with the Texans in the past because of contract situations. He spent the last four seasons with the Miami Dolphins, coaching wide receivers from 2008-10 and quarterbacks in 2011.
Kubiak wanted his new quarterbacks coach to have play-calling experience, and Dorrell certainly fits the bill. He was the head coach at UCLA from 2003-07, going 35-27 and making a bowl game in each of his five seasons. He also was an offensive coordinator at Northern Arizona (1990-91), Colorado (1995-98) and Washington (1999).
“He’s been a coordinator in college, he’s been a head coach in college and a damn good one, and he’s worked for Bill Parcells (in Miami), who’s raised some great coaches,” Kubiak said. “He got a chance to coach the quarterbacks in Miami this past year and was very much involved in game-planning and that type of stuff. He’ll be the guy that’ll be in Matt’s headset every week, so he’ll take on the responsibility that Knapper did. I know he’s a great person and I know he’s a hell of a teacher, so (I’m) very excited to have him here in Houston.”
Dorrell, 48, helped Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore have a breakthrough season in 2011. An undrafted free agent in 2007, Moore came off the bench to start the final 13 games and posted an 87.1 passer rating, which ranked fifth in the AFC.
“In a lot of ways, he had the same situation we kind of had,” Kubiak said. “Karl’s a good football coach. Karl could coach any position you want him to coach on offense, but we just need him to go in there and do a good job with Matt and with T.J. (Yates) and the other Matt (Leinart). He’s looking forward to it and excited to get going.”