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Quotes: Wednesday practice

Posted Nov 20, 2013

Members of the Houston Texans spoke to the media Wednesday following practice.

Head Coach Gary Kubiak
Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison
TE Ryan Griffin
QB Case Keenum
WR Andre Johnson
C Chris Myers
QB Matt Schaub
DE J.J. Watt
Jacksonville Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley
Jacksonville Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew

Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(opening statement) “Not practicing today, J.J. Watt, (DeAndre) Hopkins—Hopkins is sick—Wade Smith, Mike Mohamed, (Darryl) Sharpton, usual day off, Kareem Jackson, (Jawanza) Starling and Elbert Mack. So those are the guys that did not work today. Ben Tate did his usual Wednesday, so I’m not sure how he’s listed, but he did some stuff.”

(on DE J.J Watt’s status) “His back is a little sore, so gave him a day off. He should be back out there tomorrow.”

(on if he’s concerned about the play of the offensive line) “I’m concerned about a lot of things. I think that up front, this year, we haven’t played, I’m not talking about the offensive line, I’m talking about football, the type of games we would like to play; we’ve been down in a lot of football games. We’ve thrown the ball so much more this year than we have in the past. We’ve been in the type of games where, last year, we ran the football and controlled the football, played with leads and stuff. They’ve had to adjust big time in what they’re doing. They’ve held together. They’re battling their tail off. I think, for the most part, all five of them or I know I three of those guys have played every dang snap almost except for Duane (Brown) missing a little time. I think they’re battling. Everybody can do something better and I think they’d be the first ones to tell you that, too. But they’ve been battling and, in some tough situations, given us some time to have a chance to come back in some football games when everybody we knew we had to throw it every down. Like everything else, some positives and some negatives.”

(on how much QB Case Keenum liking to move out of the pocket is a challenge for the offensive line) “Yeah, it might be a little bit different because he moves a lot more obviously than Matt (Schaub) does, so it might be a little bit different from that standpoint. But as far as what we’re doing, what we’re calling, we haven’t invented the wheel with Case other than putting him back there in the pistol and doing a lot of work form there. A lot of the concepts we’re doing the same. I wouldn’t say that that is that big of a factor.”

(on QB Case Keenum still learning a lot about being a starter) “Yeah, there’s a great deal to learn. It’s every week. It’s funny, when you play a young guy like that, it’s interesting to me going through it for years, usually, initially, the first wave of some really good stuff and then it’s like the more you get going, the more football they play, the more people watch them. Now, the growth process really starts and I think that’s kind of going on with him right now. But he’s responded. Like practice and game plans, he’s what now five weeks into the game plans, I’m the guy, I’m playing, I’ve got to study my tail off. So, so many things are happening for him becoming a starter right now, off the field as well as on the field.”

(on if QB Case Keenum needs to get more comfortable staying in the pocket) “Well, you don’t want to ever take away his ability to make plays. I want him to react and do those types of things. There’s some time I think that he’s looking at things saying, ‘There was no reason for me to leave there and those type of things.’ But at the same time, the reason he’s making those plays and has been effective and done the things he’s things is because he’s got some of that gunslinger in him, and those good ones do. So I think that’s what gives him a chance, an excellent chance to be a good player in this league.”

(on how ILB Darryl Sharpton played last week) “Yeah, I’m real pleased with him. We’ve got a group of guys that aren’t practicing very much football that we’re counting on playing on Sunday. And he’s on the top of the list. Really, he’s practices maybe a little bit on Friday and plays. Just grateful that he’s holding up and he’s playing well. And he goes out there with a guy last week who had been here for 10 days and he’s got to tell him what to do. You think about how he’s handled the situation when Joe (Mays) was out and (Jeff) Tarpinian playing with him, you have to be impressed.”

(on ILB Joe Mays’ status) “Yeah, Joe practiced today and all indications are if things go good this week, he’ll be back. That’s a big plus.”

(on CB Kareem Jackson’s status) “I don’t know. I watched him run today, so that’s the first time he’s actually went out and run. So he’s swinging the arm and those types of things. I think there was some progress over the weekend and today. Whether we can get there, we’ll have to see.”

(on WR Andre Johnson and DE J.J. Watt having strong seasons and if that says a lot about them given the tough season) “No doubt to me. There’s no doubt. When you’re going through what we’re going through and those guys, they’re the same. They’re the same on the practice field. They’re the same in the game. Been doing it long enough to go through it a couple of times and don’t want to go through it any more. Yeah, it just tells you what they stand for. You look at Andre, consistently a 100-plus catch guy when he’s been healthy for us in this organization. He’s well on his way to having another one of those types of years. Yeah, very impressed. A lot of guys, Antonio Smith hasn’t missed a snap, Duane Brown, those guys, older players going through something that’s difficult, but you don’t see any wavering, you don’t see any change about how they go about practice, how they take care of their business, how they battle. I can sit here and talk about a lot of guys.”

(on guys like WR Andre Johnson and DE J.J. Watt having great seasons even when the team struggles) “I think they’d be the first ones to tell you that it’s all about the team and that’s what they care about. At the end of the year, I think everybody acknowledges what guys do on a consistent basis in this league and I don’t think that will be any different for those guys.”

(on spreading the ball around more with QB Case Keenum and how some of the younger receivers like WRs Keshawn Martin and DeVier Posey have developed) “Well, Keshawn is finally healthy and you guys finally saw that last week. He went through a month where he could barely lift his arm and he tried to play for us. That’s encouraging going forward. I think Posey has done some good things. He needs to continue to get more consistent in what he’s doing. But when you think about how quick he came from a very serious injury to play this year, I think his future is very bright.”

Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison
(on how challenging it is for the offensive line when QB Case Keenum makes so many plays off schedule) “It’s something that he’s certainly thrived at in college. He’s moved around we’re just trying to get him to make his reads and go through the progressions in the pocket and then if he has to move, move. It’s challenging, I don’t know what to say about challenging for the line; they’re just doing their jobs and we’re trying to get him on task with what we’re supposed to be doing. He’s progressed. We’re just going to keep working at it.”

(on QB Case Keenum changing the angles defenders take to the quarterback when he leaves the pocket and that affecting the offensive line) “Certainly, but that can happen anywhere with the runs if they cutback. It happens anywhere. Those guys know that and they adjust. If their hands are in the framework where they should be, they’ll do what they’re supposed to I think.”

(on how much it hurt not having TE Ryan Griffin against Oakland) “A certain number of packages that we try to do with Ryan, it’s hard to put a value on that or whatever. We knew what we had coming in and so we made our gameplan as much as it was. We just didn’t execute when we needed to. It wouldn’t have mattered what personnel we had, we have to execute with what we have. I’m not putting that on anything. Ryan tried and didn’t make it back, so we adjusted from there.”

(on how much TE Ryan Griffin’s absence factored into what they were able to do offensively) “I don’t think that there was. Like I said, we worked all week knowing that we would be limited in the tight end area. We had an extra tackle work there. We certainly had Jake (Byrne) work there. Just knowing that we couldn’t focus on that and couldn’t centralize on that, we had to be in different personnels. I don’t know that it was that dramatic of a factor.”

(on if he has been a part of a more frustrating game in regards to the  third down situation) “I think, yes, the last eight have been frustrating to say it lightly. It doesn’t matter which situation, we had our moments last week, but we can say the same thing for each of the last eight.”

(on if those little breakdowns added together creates an eight-game losing streak) “Sure. We just have to be focused on every play, knowing that may be the key play of the game. We’re striving towards that.”’

(on if QB Case Keenum needs more experience to be able to pick up blitz protections) “I think it’s more to experience than anything. We tried to work him along with the package we felt the Raiders were going to give us. They gave us a couple changeups but we can anticipate that all year. Nobody is going to give you the same thing they show you on tape. I think with experience it will be fine.”

(on if they are becoming more comfortable going to their secondary receivers like Keshawn Martin and DeVier Posey) “I don’t think we’ve ever been uncomfortable going to them. It’s just like I said many times, we’re trying to get them all on a progression and certainly if one’s open, he’ll give it to them. We’ll keep working to them and Case (Keenum) has felt pretty comfortable doing that, but I think each year we’ve done the same thing. I think we’re in the same position.”

TE Ryan Griffin
(on if it was difficult for him to watch last week’s game) “Yeah, because I felt like it was real tough watching it in the locker room in the second half. I already watched the second half, sitting there, it was rough watching it at that time knowing that I couldn’t do anything about it, and watching them lose.”

(on the team using two tight ends a lot and not being able to do that as much last game with him out) “Yeah, I did (notice that). That’s why I’m ready to be back this week and ready to go, get some two tight end sets out there.”

(on how much different the offense is when they can’t use two tight ends) “We still try to pound the ball and run our keeper stuff. But it is different and we’ve got to get back to it, getting the ball on the ground and spreading out the two tight end stuff. We’ll be ready to go.”

(on when he was cleared) “Monday, I was cleared.”

QB Case Keenum
(on what it did for him to be named the starter again this week) “It’s like I said after the game, I was going to prepare and expect to start regardless. My mindset, as far as preparation goes, was going to be the exact same. Now knowing that I am starting, I just know that I’m starting. I don’t know how much that changes my preparation style. Obviously, the reps during practice. That’s just how I prepare each week.”

(on how difficult handling the blitz is at this level) “There’s a lot of stuff that is difficult at this level. That’s why it’s the NFL and, if it were easy, then everybody would do it. It’s something I’m learning. I’m learning every week more and more. There are times where do handle the blitz and we get the ball off and nobody knows. It’s kind of the whole aspect of being an offensive linemen is that, when the job’s getting done, nobody really notices. It’s when it’s not getting done that it happens to be noticed. It’s something I’m getting better at. I watch film, specifically of that stuff, more than I watch other film. Just knowing and recognizing and being able to recognize it before it happens. When I don’t recognize it before it happens, being able to react the right way is crucial.”

(on being called a gunslinger and if he likes that term) “Yeah, I like that term as long as it’s used in a positive way. Yeah, I guess more of a John Wayne type than maybe the bad guy in the western. I can’t think any off of the top of my head. But yeah, that’s the way I view a lot of things. Coming out slinging it to be perfectly honest. Then, having nothing to lose. I’ve got nothing to lose. That’s been my mindset for a long time and it’s the way I am/ it’s got me where I am now. That’s how I play the game.”

(on DE Antonio Smith saying he believes in him and what that means to him) “Y’all have talked to a lot of the veteran guys. I remember this question going back weeks. It’s the same thing form veteran guys like Antonio, offensively and defensively. It means a lot for guys to have my back. I hope they know that I’m fighting my butt off and doing everything I possibly can to be the best quarterback that I can be and help this team win because that’s what matters most.”

(on if he needs to stay in the pocket more) “Yeah, I think I can do a better job of trusting when those pressures that they are going to be picked up and recognizing that we have the right protection called and to the right pressure. And still be able to stay in the pocket and knowing I don’t have to drift, I don’t have to move. I can make a better throw on a deeper route on time rather than trying to escape and get out of there, and totally have a busted play, if you will.”

(on if he has challenges seeing over the linemen in the pocket) “I would say that I couldn’t tell you a difference just because this is how I’ve always, I’ve always been this tall. That’s how I play the game. I think every quarterback, no matter how tall you are, at time, there’s going to be spaces that you don’t see that you have to maneuver. That’s just how I play the game. It’s something that I can’t change as hard as I work at it. That’s just moving in the pocket and 4reovcniging space and recognizing defenses and coverages and knowing where people are, and knowing where my guys are and where they’re going to be, probably more importantly. Seeing stuff without seeing stuff.”

(on if he’s ever talked to somebody like Saints QB Drew Brees before) “No, I’d like to. I’d like to one of these offseasons maybe do a workout or something and pick his brain. But there’s been lot of guys that have been successful. I don’t see that as an anything but an opportunity.”

(on how much more complex reading defenses are in the NFL compared to in college) “Just our offense in general is completely different and so that makes it the defenses that I see differently than what you see in a spread-type of offense. A lot of the same coverages, but they’re able to disguise a]it a lot differently. They can put more in the box. They can change things up and do different things. So yeah, that’s been a huge part of my growth as quarterback is thinking like a defensive player, thinking what areas are they trying to avoid of getting caught in. In a sense, I’m trying to catch in those areas or in those weaknesses in their zones, in their pressures or whatever it is.”

(on Gary Kubiak playing QB Matt Schaub last week because of his comfort level and if it’s something he feels better with now) “I totally 100 percent respect and think the most of Coach Kubiak and what he does. I know that whatever decision he makes, it’s with his team in mind and it’s with his player, with us, in mind. As far as that goes, I totally respect that and I think the world of that. But at the same time, I’m very competitive and I’m confident in what I can do. I want to play. That’s just me and, if I didn’t want to be out there, I don’t think I should be playing. I don’t think I should be doing this. I should go and do something else.”

(on if he was surprised to be named the starter again this week) “As far as expectations, this whole year has not quite been what everybody as expected from a lot of different things. You know things are going to pop up and you’re going to have some surprised and some crises. We’ve had a bunch and we’ve had a bunch early. Stuff that you wouldn’t ever plan for. As far as expectations, my whole thing has been week-to-week and looking forward to this day and what’s next. And for me, I’m about to go get in the cold tub and then go watch some film. That’s as far as I’m thinking.”

(on if it’s easier to admire WR Andre Johnson playing the way he is this season given the tough year) “Yeah, I’m going to admire Andre. When you ask if it’s easier to admire him, I’m going to admire him regardless. Just the type of person he is. But yeah, it does make you admire when it’s just constantly him amazing you. It’s jaw-dropping, kind of wow, holy cow, did that really just happen? Did he really just do that? He makes me want to elevate my game and it makes me want to be there for him. I hate when I watch film and see that he’s open on certain plays and I’m not getting the ball to him. He speaks tremendous just by his actions and how he plays. Y’all know him and y’all have been around him enough to know that he doesn’t speak a whole lot, but he says he says a whole lot with what he does and the type of person (he is). Like I said before, I think people’s character are revealed when things aren’t going right like you said. He’s a solid dude and that’s understating it.”

(on if he’s ever come out during a game) “No. My freshman year with Blake Joseph, we were back and forth. We went back and forth like eight or nine games.”

(on if Univ. of Houston was moving back and forth) “We did a little bit of everything. I wasn’t playing some games and came out. We rotated some games. We both played well.”

WR Andre Johnson
(on if the game is still fun even when the season is turning out as hoped) “The game is always fun for me. I can’t speak for anybody else. I just enjoy being out there playing. That’s something I love to do. Every time I’m out there, I’m enjoying it.”

(on if it is more difficult to play well when the team is losing) “No, I don’t think it’s harder to play well because any time you’re competing, you want to win. As a competitor, it’s not hard to play. Like I said, you want to win the game so it doesn’t matter what your record is or what has happened thus far. When you’re out there playing, you’re not thinking about your record or anything like that. You’re thinking about winning.”

(on approaching another milestone and if he will reflect on that more when he’s retired) “What milestone are you talking about?”

(on approaching 15th place on the NFL’s all-time receiving yards list) “It’s getting up there, but when you’re drafted you don’t think about stuff like that. You just think about living out your dream and accomplishing your goal that you set as a kid. I’ve never said I was going to be a top-15, top-whatever wide receiver. I just wanted to be one of the best. I was just fortunate to go out and make plays do some great things as a player. It’s just paying off.”

(on Ed Reed saying that Wade Phillips was the reason he was no longer here and that coaches weren’t putting players in the right positions) “Like I’ve said before, people have feelings. People feel certain ways. Maybe that’s how he felt when he was here. Other than that, I really can’t speak on it. That’s Ed’s feelings. That’s what he felt, so that’s pretty much it.”

(on how’re things with him and QB Matt Schaub) “Me and Matt are fine. We talk just like we normally talk. There is no difference or no animosity towards each other. The crazy thing was as soon as I came in on Monday, he was the first person I spoke to. We’re fine. We’re just talking, laughing, just like we always do. Like I said, I don’t have a problem with Matt. It was just the heat of the battle and things like that happen.”

(on his reaction to Gary Kubiak’s decision to have QB Case Keenum start) “That’s his decision. I don’t make those decisions. I only can control what I can do. Those things are out of my control. Like I’ve said before, I feel comfortable with every quarterback. If Case is the guy, that’s who we’re going with.”

(on QB Matt Schaub talking about his difficult year and an uncertain future and if it’s difficult to see how quickly things can turn for a teammate) “I don’t think anybody saw this coming. At the same time, that’s the nature of the business. Guys come, guys go. You hate to see it happen because me and him have played a lot of football together. I’ve caught a lot of passes from him. It’s something you hate to see but who knows? You never know what can happen. You hate to see what he’s going through. As a player, I’m sure it’s been very stressful for him, but at the same time, he still comes in here and prepares to go out and play. If his number is called, he’ll be ready to go. That’s big of him because some guys would just throw in the towel, but he hasn’t done that.”

(on if it was a little disorienting to have to go to the silent count and the attitude of fans towards the team on offense) “A lot of times our fans are loud at certain times when they probably shouldn’t be loud. Sometimes you get a first down or something and they’re still celebrating after the huddle, but you hate that. You hate to see that you have to go to a silent count in your home stadium. That’s something you hate to see, but fans are going to be fans. If you’re not putting anything good out on the field, they’re going to boo you. That’s if you’re home, away, or whatever. Right now, we’re not playing at a level where we’re really giving them much to cheer for. Maybe they’re just expressing what they felt. They pay money to come see us play. They’re spending their money so I guess they feel like they have an opinion to cheer or boo. They chose to boo on Sunday.”

(on the analogy of fans waving their arms behind the basket at Rockets game at the Toyota Center while a Rockets player tries to shoot free throws) “Like I said before, it’s something you don’t want to happen. You can go to away games and for instance, if you go to Indy, you can hear a pin drop in that stadium when their offense is on the field. Like I said, we haven’t done anything to give them much to cheer for. Maybe it’s just frustration. Everybody is frustrated and that is part of it. We still have to go out and play, so it doesn’t really matter.”

C Chris Myers
(on if he feels for Head Coach Gary Kubiak right now) “I feel for everybody, especially for Coach Kub, especially what he’s been through the past few weeks here. It’s something that none of us, at the beginning of the season, ever thought we’d be in right now, but we’re here and we’ve got to dig ourselves out.”

(on if he ever pauses and wonders where things went wrong this year) “I think if you’re sitting and looking back and trying to figure that out, I think you’re going to fall into a deeper hole. Right now, we’ve just got to get a W under our belt and move on from there.”

(on if getting one win can be the wakeup call for this football team) “I don’t want to say it’s going to be a wakeup call, but you just need to get that first win to get the ball rolling. I think the leaders on this team understand what it’s going to take to kind of dig yourselves out. We’ve dug ourselves a deep hole. It’s not like we’ve been getting blown out the past few weeks. We’ve been in a handful of games and I think the last four, we’ve had the ball at the last drive to be able to put the game away and we haven’t done it. We know that we’re in the games, but we just haven’t been taking control of them.”

(on if this team has been able to avoid thinking about ‘waiting for something to go wrong instead of waiting for something to go right’) “No, I think if anyone’s thinking about that during the game, they’re thinking about the wrong thing. Like I said before, if you’re finding yourself hard to be motivated in this league, you know you probably need to step down because it’s blessing to be a part of this league it’s a blessing to play every day.”

(on if it says the team is not the far away since they have lost several close games) “That’s what I said before. We’re in every single game. Sometimes, that’s an even worse loss to be able to lose like that. For the most part, we’re performing in the games, but we’re just not consistent enough. We’ll be on one quarter as an offense and be off the next quarter, and then be on again. Until we can put it all together and play a complete four quarters, we’re not going to win any games.”

QB Matt Schaub
(on Gary Kubiak naming Case Keenum the starter and if it has been difficult going from playing to being the backup to playing and being named the backup again) “He’s the coach and he makes the decision.”

(on what he thinks of his future in Houston) “I don’t know. I’m just preparing each week to go out and play a football game and doing the best that I can to do my job.”

(on going from being a Pro Bowl quarterback and getting a new contract and if he feels he’ll be with the team next year) “I don’t know what the future lies. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I just know that we need to go out and win a football game.”

(on if he was surprised he was put in the game last week or was that something they had talked about) “It hadn’t been anything we discussed. I didn’t find out until right before we were getting the ball so I only got a couple of throws in on the sideline. It was something that came down pretty quickly before we got the ball.”

(on how tough this season has been for him) “It’s been very hard, there is no question. We’re sitting here 2-8. It’s not anything that any of us anticipated. Our expectations and our standards are much higher. It’s been very hard.”

(on how tough the season has been for him personally) “Like I said, it’s been very hard. How I feel and how it’s going for me is directly correlated to how the team is doing.”

(on if it was a little disorienting to have to go to the silent count when he went in the game at home) “We do it half the year. We do it on the road, so we just go out and function. If guys need to go to that in the shotgun, we’ve got to do that.”

(on if he said anything to the team about having to go to a silent count) “Yeah, well we all talk collectively. It’s something for the benefit for the offensive line and those guys on the edge and everyone in general.”

(on if he was disappointed that despite the struggles the fans were that loud when the team was on offense) “I can’t control how people feel or how they react. They’re fans, that’s what they’re there for, good or bad. We just have to handle it and find a way to win.”

(on his teammates talking about how disappointed they were with the fans were doing when they were on offense and how it impacted the team) “I was just trying to execute the play that was called and go out and win a football game. I don’t care about any of that outside stuff. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t affect anything that happens on the football field.”

(on if it is difficult to go through a season without knowing what the future holds) “That’s what we’re here for. We take each week one at a time. When you’re in the length of the season and how long it is and the marathon and the grind, you just have to focus on the next thing in front of you. If you’re thinking about the future or down the road or beyond what is right in front of you, then you’re going to miss something.”

(on sticking together through the rest of the season) “Absolutely. That’s the name of this game. That’s what we do as a locker room and as a team.”

(on if fans are the same everywhere from city to city) “I only have so much to go on. I’ve only been with two teams. Fans are fans, wherever you are. That’s just the way they are, but I only have so many things to go on.”

G Wade Smith
(on the play of QB Case Keenum) “I think he’s done a good job. He’s come in there and made a lot of plays, especially off schedule. He’s had a good connection with Andre (Johnson) and getting him the ball deep. He had another deep touchdown pass to Garrett (Graham) the other day. I think he’s been doing good.”

(on how challenging it is for the offensive like that QB Case Keenum likes to move out of the pocket) “When he’s making plays ,you’re not going to do much complaining. I think you realize as an offensive linemen, you have to protect a little bit longer an maybe at different angles than you might normally because he’ll extend plays and he’ll run around a little bit more. But it’s pretty much the same.”

(on if he thinks QB Case Keenum needs to get a little more comfortable staying in the pocket) “I can’t really get into the specifics on what he has to do in the pocket. He has a quarterback coach that does all of that stuff and Gary (Kubiak) and guys like that. He’s been doing a good job. This is his second year in the league and first year playing, I think he’s done a good job.”

(on the team’s struggles in the second half) “Honestly, if I had an answer for it, I think we would have already told the rest of the guys that are playing.”

(on if it’s frustrating trying to pinpoint what’s going wrong in the second half) “Yeah, because we’ve done some things, tried to switch it up. We’ve made a concerted effort to try and come out there and do better in the second half. Bottom line, we haven’t been expecting, especially in the third quarter. When you don’t execute in this league you won’t be successful. And I think that’s the bottom line, we haven’t been executing in the third quarter. You get behind and we’re in the fourth quarter and we might make some drives, but we get into the red zone and don’t finish.”

DE J.J. Watt
(on Gary Kubiak saying that he sat out of practice today because of a sore back) “I’m doing well, just a little precautionary today. It won’t be any issue at all.”

(on if his injury is related to when he came out during last week’s game) “Yes, but, like I said, I’ll be perfectly fine for Sunday. No issues there, just a little rest today.”

(on if he doesn’t like even sitting out of practice like he did today) “I’m not a big fan. I get a little fidgety and agitated. I don’t know what to do with myself. I toss a little football up and down all day to try and distract myself.”

(on if his injury is more like a bruise or if it’s a muscular thing) “I’m not even exactly sure. It’s just a little sore. But like I said, I’ll be out there tomorrow and I’ll be perfectly fine.”

(on facing the Jaguars and desperately needing a win and if it’s harder to get up for this game compared to playing the Patriots) “No, I don’t think so. I think every single game, I get just as excited. You can call it cliché, you can call it coach speak, you can call it whatever you want. But honestly, I get the exact same level of excitement and I get the exact same level of intensity.”

(on QB Case Keenum being named the starter again this week) “Case is a good quarterback and obviously he’s our guy. We’re going out there and we’re excited about that. I think he’s earned it. All I can worry about is the defensive side of the ball.”

(on the mood of the team right now) “I think frustration obviously is a word that you could use. I think fighting for a win. We’re trying to find a way to win a football game and that’s what we’re looking to do.”

(on his new DC Comics character Mega Watt) “Yeah, it’s something we did in the offseason. I just saw it for the first time a little while ago. It’s pretty cool, but obviously it would be a heck of a lot cooler if we were winning some football games.”

(on how cool it is to have a comic book character after him) “It’s pretty cooled. It’s one of those things that, as a kid, you look at things like Superman and Spiderman and Batman, and to see yourself as a comic book character, it’s really cool. Those are the types of things that, when I’m done playing and I look back and I’m like, ‘I had a comic book character, that’s really cool.’ And that’s something I’ll be able to show my kids someday. It’s a really neat deal.”

(on how badly he feels for Head Coach Gary Kubiak and the coaching staff for the heat they are taking right now) “Everybody’s taking some extreme heat right now for where we’re at because it’s frustrating and we expected to be somewhere else. Like I’ve always said, you have to make sure first you look in the mirror. Nobody in the locker room can ever put fingers at anybody else before you look at yourself. That’s the way I operate. It’s tough. It’s a tough situation that we’re in right now. You can’t pack it in. You have no choice but to give everything you have and tier to find a way to win every single week.”

Jacksonville Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley
(on if he ever thought he would be facing the Texans in November with the chance of putting them in last place in the division) “No. The NFL, though, as you look to all of the records and the season, there’s a story within a story for each team I think. I know that they had high expectations, as most teams do in the NFL and, for a variety a reason, sometimes, you may not be where you want to be. But there’s still six games left and a lot can be accomplished for them.”

(on how important it is through a tough time to keep the locker room together and what some of the things are that a coach can do to help with that) “I think, just as far as for our locker room and we handle it, I think it goes back to workouts back in March and April and OTAs, and really setting the foundation and building a really, really strong culture. And you have that culture for times like this. I think that’s what you rely on and, if the guy’s know that it’s a culture of consistency, they know what they’re getting day-in and day-out. I think that helps out quite a bit. I think if you try to do something today or you tried last week to keep the locker room in good shape, I think it’s an ongoing process. But I think it really does start back then.”

(on if QB Case Keenum has some weaknesses against the blitz) “I think that, with pickups and things like that, it can affect teams differently. There are opportunities for big plays when teams bring pressure as well. It might be a pickup here or there. I know, at times, it looked like the pickups and things like that caused a little bit of pressure on him. That’s a general rule of thought I think across the league that, when you get a younger quarterback, you try to find creative ways to get pressure and try to hurry the thought process up for him.”

(on his impressions of QB Case Keenum) “I think he does a really good job of staying in the pocket, but, I think what stands out to us is he’ll improvise. He’ll get going on the urn. He’s made big plays on the run. He’s not really a quarterback that will move out of the pocket to run, although, you see it at times. It’s more to extend the play. But he’s gotten some big plays off of it. I think he’s got good poise sitting in there. I know you just mentioned about the pressures, but, to come in as a rookie and to do some of the thing he’s doing, it feels like the team has kind of rallied around him. You feel like a sense of spirit when he’s in there.”

(on the Jaguars’ need to run and going against Texans DE J.J. Watt) “I think it’s always a challenge when you’ve got a guy like J.J. in there who’s very disruptive. Whether you say, ‘Let’s run away from him.’ He’s disruptive then, too. I think you have to have belief in your scheme. You have to understand who you’re going against. The NFL’s such a personnel driven league and, sometimes, you look at corners and safeties and linebackers. In this case, it’s up front. I think we just have to be aware of him and his strengths, and try to really stay in tune to what we do as well, and understand who we’re going against.”

(on the Texans defensive struggles in the red zone and if he sees some things that they can take advantage of) “Well, I think that we understand their defense is a highly talented defense. I was just watching them again with our offensive staff; they have playmakers on the defense. They’ve got guys who will make plays. I’m sure it’s just a consistency factor for them as afar as giving up an explosive play here and there. And do you see that in the red zone as well? You’ve got some younger guys playing in the back end and that’s the consistency that you’re striving to do is for them play-in and play-out. We’ll get more into the red zone later on in the week, but I think you’re always looking for opportunities each and every week regardless of who you play. But we do know that their defense is highly talented and whether the statistics lie or not, what we see on tape is a team that flies around and plays pretty aggressively.”

Jacksonville Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew
(on exchanging texts this week with his former teammate Texans FB Greg Jones) “I can’t believe he told you guys that. This is one of those games I think throughout the offseason and through the season, me and Greg, we talk every week, maybe two or three times a week just to see how he’s doing. And this is the kind of game I guess some of us have circled just because of him. It’s nice to finally to get an opportunity to go against him. I told him I wish him the least amount of luck as possible and I hope he stays healthy and has a horrible game.”

(on what he misses the most with FB Greg Jones being gone) “Our friendship. Our kids played together. Our wives hung out. That’s always nice when you have a guy like that. Obviously, his blocking style is something that is hard to replace. Our fullback, Will Ta’ufo’ou, has done a great job here for us. But it’s great when you’re with somebody for so long and you understand how he blocks, he understand how you run and you kind of can do little certain things. It’s been, I can’t really say a transition, but Will came in after last year, watching Greg and teaching from Greg, it’s kind of having a protégé of Greg there. It’s exciting to see. I know Will’s excited to see him and a bunch of guys here are as well.”

(on having some really good seasons with football teams that have underperformed and if he sees similarities between him and WR Andre Johnson) “I guess you could say. It’s hard to say because Andre’s 6’3 and he’s a monster and he’s a first-ballot Hall of Fame guy. He’s a guy with multiple quarterbacks who’s produced a crazy amount of numbers. It’s a little bit different. I know about last week, he was a little frustrated. I understand because he’s a competitor and, when you hang out with guys like that, he talks about football and wanting to be the best, and doing whatever he can. I know he sacrifices his body week-in and week-out to get those wins. It does get frustrating form time-to-time. But what he has done is become a great leader not only for his team, but throughout the league. A guy that sometimes the season hasn’t gone the way you want it to go, but he still continues to go out and play at a high level, and demands double coverage and still puts up numbers. He does a great job of teaching younger guys how to be a professional and guys that aren’t his position as well. It’s something I’m trying to do as well here, but I’m not at his level yet.”

(on if he’s been frustrated before during season in which he’s been successful but the team’s success does not match that) “Every year regardless of what you do personal, it’s frustrating if you don’t win games and don’t make it to the playoffs. That’s always frustrating. We’ve been 7-9 and we had to win two games to get to the playoffs and we didn’t do it or we’ve been 8-8 and haven’t been able to do it. Obviously, the one year we did go, that was the one satisfying year when we went to the second round of playoffs and had an opportunity to win there, but just didn’t capitalize. Other than that, it’s kind of been, every year’s been frustrating because that’s wall that matters. I’ve had a coach tell me, ‘You can rush for two yards and win the game or you can rush for 500 yards and lose the game. Which one would you rather have?’ Obviously, it’s a team sport and all the hard work you put in throughout the day or throughout the week with your teammates, will kind of validate that is the victory.”

(on what coach told him about winning as opposed to personal numbers) “That was a high school coach.”

(on having a season like the Texans are having now when people thought Jacksonville would be a contender and things went wrong, and if it’s harder to take that or what the team is going through now) “I think they’re both pretty tough. Obviously, when you have those high expectations and you kind of, as an organization, you go out and get guys that you think are going to take that extra leap. But in this game, that’s why everyone says you have to play on Sunday because, in this game, you never know, injuries might happen. Then you have a guy playing that was normally your backup or a guy that you’re trying to work to be the starter in the next couple of years, he’s in now, you have to thrust him in. A lot of crazy things can happen throughout the course of the season, which can either derail you or obviously help you get to that mode. At the end of the day, losing period is frustrating. Watching some of the games and seeing some of the plays that are being made and some of the things that are going on, I can see how a lot of Houston and Texans fans are unhappy. But that’s part of the game. Sometimes, the ball doesn’t roll your way.”

(on if he’s ever had to go to a silent count at home) “No, I don’t think so.”

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