KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Former Kansas City Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel announced his retirement from football Monday, a decision shared via the Houston Texans on social media.
“Football has been my entire life and it’s been a dream come true to coach for 50 years,” Crennel, a five-time Super Bowl champion, said in a statement accompanying the announcement.
50 years of coaching in the books.— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) June 6, 2022
Congrats on your retirement, Romeo 👏
Crennel, 74, who had been serving as Houston’s senior advisor for football performance, thanked “so many friends” for their support during his career and singled out the fan bases of the NFL teams for whom he coached — the New York Giants, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Cleveland Browns, Chiefs and Texans.
“I’ll miss everything about coaching and teaching, but the thing I’ll miss the most is being around the guys every day,” Crennel said. “My goal was to put every player and coach in the best position to succeed and I consider every guy I coached or worked with a part of my family.”
Crennel also thanked his wife, Rosemary, and three daughters — Lisa, Tiffany and Kristine.
“Because of their love and selflessness, I have been able to live out my dream,” he said. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to spend more time with my grandchildren while staying around the game of football.”
Crennel went 4-15 as the Chiefs’ head coach, including a 2-1 record as the interim coach in 2011 after Todd Haley was fired.
He led Kansas City to a stunning upset of the previously unbeaten Green Bay Packers late in the 2011 season, which helped earn him the permanent job in 2012.
Crennel, who spent 2010-11 as defensive coordinator on Haley’s staff, went 2-14 in his only full-time season with the Chiefs, who fired him and hired Andy Reid before the 2013 season.
After working as a college assistant coach from 1970-80, Crennel joined Ray Perkins’ staff with the Giants in 1981 as special teams coach. He remained an NFL assistant, rising to defensive coordinator with Cleveland (2000) and New England (2001-04) before returning to the Browns as head coach from 2005.
During four seasons as head coach, the Browns went 24-40. After a year off, Crennel returned to the NFL with Kansas City.
He took a year off after being fired by the Chiefs, a tenure that included Jovan Belcher’s murder-suicide.
Crennel returned to the NFL as defensive coordinator for the Texans in 2014 and remained with the organization in various capacities — including interim head coach in 2020, guiding Houston to a 4-8 record after Bill O’Brien’s firing — until his retirement Monday.
Crennel won two Super Bowls with the Giants and three with the Patriots as an assistant coach during his career.