The problem in this is that O'Brien is only under contract for one more season while Smith was extended a year ago through the 2020 season.
The Giants have made it clear they would like to hire a new coach with head coaching or significant coordinator experience, and O'Brien has both.
Bill O'Brien, who had gained steam as a potential Giants contender were he to become available, "is likely to be back next season" as Texans coach, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Ex-Chelsea player set to become Liberia President
He wrote "Congratulations to the people of Liberia on the successful election of their new President, Mr. The 51-year-old Weah, a senator who entered politics more than a decade ago, will take over in January.
"Effective immediately, I have chosen to take an extended leave of absence to focus my attention and intention on my wife's complete recovery from her recent diagnosis of breast cancer", Smith said in a statement.
This disappointing campaign, which featured injuries to star defensive end J.J. Watt and promising rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson among others, comes on the heels of back-to-back AFC South titles for Houston.
One source went so far as to tell Wilson, "It's toxic". The 49-year-old spent four seasons as the Director of Football Operation for Houston's Week 17 opponent, the Indianapolis Colts. This isn't exactly new; a year ago there were grumblings that O'Brien could leave because of his relationship with Smith, but the two made it work this season. But a torn ACL suffered at practice in early November cut his season short. Each played in only five games.