Things could take a pretty drastic turn in Houston but not like many expected them to.
O'Brien, who replaced Gary Kubiak in 2014, has one year left on his original five-year contract.
Earlier this month, O'Brien said that he "will never quit as head football coach of the Houston Texans".
Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle cited many sources about the clash of egos between the two and the tension that has surrounded the squad because the two dislike each other that much.
Alex Marvez of Sporting News reported Sunday that Texans head coach Bill O'Brien was set to force owner Bob McNair to choose between keeping him or Smith for 2018 and beyond. It was the team's sixth consecutive defeat and finished off an injury-plagued 4-12 season.More news: Vikings offensive line in flux heading into final week of season
Smith issued a statement through the team saying that he wants to focus on his wife, who recently was diagnosed with breast cancer.
"I am eternally grateful to the McNair family for their unwavering support during this time". "This was an extremely hard decision for me to make as I love this organization and every member of this team bath on and off the field".
Smith's priorities are understandably and appropriately elsewhere with his wife undergoing treatment, so handing personnel control to someone else may be a sound decision for all involved with the Texans.
"I don't have any comment on that", O'Brien said on Sunday. But later picks haven't panned out as well and his free-agent signings have been mixed. If Gaine ends up as the Texans' next GM, we wouldn't expect Smith back at any point.