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Houston Texans coach Bill O’Brien ripped a local school superintendent who made racist remarks about quarterback Deshaun Watson after a 20-17 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Sunday.
“I really don’t want to waste a lot of time responding to outdated, inaccurate, ignorant, idiotic statements,” O’Brien said in a press conference Wednesday. “I’ll just let Deshaun’s proven success on the field, his character off the field speak for itself. He’s one of the greatest guys I’ve ever coached. He represents everything that’s right about football, about life. His teammates respect him. His coaching staff respects him.
“In this day and age, it’s just amazing that BS exists. But it does. We’re moving forward. And our fans, they love Deshaun and we’re really concentrating on the Giants, but I feel like I’ve wasted about a minute and a half responding to that BS.”
O’Brien’s comments stem from a comment post made to an article published on the Houston Chronicle’s website regarding Watson’s performance on the final play of Sunday’s loss.
Lynn Redden, superintendent of the Onalaska Independent School District, which sits approximately 100 miles north of Houston, wrote in response to the article: “That may have been the most inept quarterback decision I’ve seen in the NFL. When you need precision decision making you can’t count on a black quarterback.”
Redden said in an interview with the Chronicle that he deleted the post immediately after he realized it was a public comment and not a private one.
“I totally regret it,” Redden told the Chronicle before trying to justify his comment by claiming black quarterbacks have “had limited success” in the history of the NFL.
Redden’s initial remark was in response to a sequence at the end of the game, when Watson and the Texans were down three points near midfield and needed to get into field goal range.
Watson snapped the ball and bounced around in the pocket, eventually burning the remaining 17 seconds off the clock and throwing a pass to receiver DeAndre Hopkins. The game ended before the Texans could line up for the field goal.
Watson took the high road and declined to criticize Redden.
“Of course,” Watson said when asked if he deals with racism. “This is everyday life, I guess. But I’m all about love, so I don’t focus on none of that. I love all people. That’s what I focus on.
“It’s part of life. I can’t control other people and what their beliefs are. I can control what I can control. I just focus on me, and that’s it.”
The school district released a statement saying it “does not condone negative comments or actions against any race,” though it has not announced any discipline for Redden.
“That’s not my job,” Watson said when asked if he thought Redden should be fired. “I don’t make that decision.
“That’s on him. May peace be with him. I’m not worried about what he had to say.”
Follow Lorenzo Reyes on Twitter @LorenzoGReyes.