Houston Texans owner Bob McNair made an unfortunate comment last year about inmates running the asylum. Now, he says he shouldn’t have apologized.
In October, Texans owner Bob McNair made a statement in which he said the “inmates were running the asylum,” seemingly in reference to players and the NFL. The comments were met with plenty of resistance, including his team staying away from practice as they geared up for a date with the Seattle Seahawks.
McNair ultimately apologized, but now he’s regretting the whole thing. No, not the comments, but the apology. McNair is sorry for the one part of his actions that weren’t embarrassing.
“The main thing I regret is apologizing,” McNair said. He insists the “inmates” he was referring to were not NFL players, but rather league executives who he felt had more control over major decisions than the owners. “I really didn’t have anything to apologize for.”
McNair ought to know better. He’s been a successful businessman most of his life, so he should understand more than most that ticking off both sections of your fanbase and, more importantly, your employees, is a bad move. The Texans are still one of the stronger teams in the league with Deshaun Watson, Whitney Mercilus and J.J. Watt coming back from injuries, but perhaps McNair’s defiance will hurt his team’s ability to land free agents.
Regardless, it’s a tone-deaf statement by a man in a position of authority within the league. Roger Goodell won’t make his thoughts public on McNair’s feelings, but firing off a private phone call might not be the worst route.
Moving forward, Houston will be relatively quiet at the NFL Draft, which starts on April 26. The Texans don’t have picks in either of the first two rounds after trades with the Cleveland Browns.