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Quotes: Monday open locker room

Posted Sep 27, 2010

Read what head coach Gary Kubiak and the Texans said to the media the day after their loss to the Cowboys at Reliant Stadium.

Head coach Gary Kubiak and the Texans answered questions from the media on Monday at Reliant Stadium. The following is a transcript of their respective interviews.

Head coach Gary Kubiak
RB Arian Foster
CB Kareem Jackson
WR Andre Johnson
SS Bernard Pollard
DE Antonio Smith
T Eric Winston

Head coach Gary Kubiak
(on the defense against the Cowboys and the meeting with his players) “I thought we played very good defense for 40 plays. We had us in a 10-3 game, had kept them in check and gave us many opportunities offensively to be in the ball game. We thought we’d be in a game like that. We had a span, from the 41st play to the 54th or 55th play, 14- or 15-play span, where we gave up 182 yards and two touchdowns. Big plays have been our Achilles hill on defense up to this point in this young season. It’s something that has to get fixed. There’s no reason for somebody to walk in our stadium and for us to give up 385 yards of offense. I don’t care who we’re playing. We’ve got to get it fixed, whether we’re young on the back end or not. None of that matter. We’ve got to get it fixed.”

(on if they can make a defensive turnaround like they did this time last year) “We’ve given up way too many yards, as I said. There’s been a lot of talk about the young guys that we’re playing but they’re veterans now. They’ve been out there three times in the regular season and this is our group. This is the group we’re going with. I expect us to play better than that. We were playing better than that yesterday, as a defensive football team, for a great period of time, but the consistency is lacking. There has to be a turnaround and it’s gotta happen real, real quick. We were able to turn it around last year. I’m expecting us to do the same. We’re still missing a hell of a player (LB Brian Cushing), but he’s not going to be anywhere close for another week. So we’ve got o figure out a way to do it with the group we’ve got.”

(on if he’s seeing similarities between this defense and the one a year ago when he made changes) “What I’m seeing on defense, I keep seeing spurts of us playing very good defense. First off, you go to the Colts game and up until the point where GQ (CB Glover Quin) may get that pick in the fourth quarter, we’re fixing to hold Indy to 10 points. That’s unbelievable to do that. But yet, we didn’t. We got bad at the end of the game. Washington, we played very poorly for three quarters, and in the fourth quarter we hold them to twenty-something yards and comeback and win the game. Then yesterday, we played 38 minutes of great, great defensive football. So there are signs that we are capable of doing that and the fact that we get bad in certain periods of the game, for whatever reason, is causing us to give up way too many yards and too many points and too many big plays. It’s just about consistency and the only way to get it is to go do it. This would be a good week to start.”

(on if CB Kareem Jackson was expecting safety help on the touchdown pass to WR Roy Williams) “The long touchdown to Roy Williams was not even a pass guys. That was a run that (QB Tony) Romo and Roy Williams adjusted on their own. They were actually running a running play to the left and they had a sight adjustment on the backside, because of a safety issue. If you look at the play, you will see them blocking the run. You’ll see the center working down the field. He just raised up and threw him a one step slant. That’s something we teach also. It was just an adjustment on their part and Kareem has got to make that play. He’s in bump-man. No, he’s not getting any help. He’s just got to lock him down and they’ve got a bad play. He gets out of whack. Roy is a big kid and threw him, got his body out of whack and it ends up being a home run. But no, he was not expecting any help.”

(on if CB Kareem Jackson bit out on the out pattern on the 15-yard touchdown by Dallas on Sunday) “That was actually (CB) Brice (McCain). That was McCain. McCain is in man coverage there also, sitting on his outside shoulder. There’s help in the middle of the field, but there’s not help vertical. So he’s got to squeeze that route and make that play.”

(on how his safeties are playing) “Need to be more consistent, just like the rest of the group. We always get a lunch pail effort from (SS) Bernard (Pollard). He plays very hard; made a ton of tackles yesterday, but he can get better, too. When I talk about a consistency part, I’m talking about the whole group. It’s about everybody. We didn’t play good enough up front defensively and we didn’t play good enough as a team. We got beat.

(on if he points out players’ mistakes in meetings after every game) “It all depends. If we have as many as we had this week, yeah, we’re gonna do that. We’re always going to fix our mistakes as a football team. That’s something we’re always gonna do. You know, sometimes I think it calls for a little bit more. I was more concerned this morning with some detail and some things that we teach on this football team that we ask people to do on a regular basis. We get it done a great deal of the time. Every now and then we choose not to do it. And I didn’t like the way that we chose not to do some of those things yesterday, so that was the focus of my meeting.”

(on the possibility of being 3-1 and avoiding letdowns after emotional wins) “We’ve got to regroup. This team poses matchup problems for us. I think they’re third in defense in the league right now. They’ve got a great corner, so obviously they can cause us problems. What we have to do is first off, we got to go get rid of these mistakes we made and if we made the mistakes because we were doing too much as coaches, then it’s our job as coaches to get rid of that. So we got a good, long night up ahead of us trying to figure that out. You know, the key in this league is when you do something good, are you mature enough to come do it good again? If you do it poorly, can you regroup, come back and fix it? So, we’re on the latter end this week. So, can we come back and fix it? Can we go on the road and find a way to end up having a great month of football? If you have a 3-1 month in this league, that’s pretty darn good football. We have to regroup and try and get that done.”

(on why the Texans didn’t run any play action passes in the red zone against Dallas) “We did some play pass. Obviously, when you play pass a lot against that group, with those two edges, you’re asking tight ends to hold up on great players. That’s one of the issues. We had our chances. We ran it a few times; got a couple plays out of it. Our problems in the red zone were tied to penalties and mistakes. It had nothing do with the fact that we didn’t run a play action pass. We didn’t run what we set out to run. We didn’t get it done. We didn’t execute as a team. We couldn’t make a yard from the one. I’m not gonna run a lot of play action at the one-yard line.”

(on how Cowboys LB Keith Brooking was able to get free in the pass rush)  “They were just better than us at the point of attack yesterday.  The other one, he was unblocked.  He was totally unblocked.  They caught us in the perfect protection.”

(on whether CB Kareem Jackson reminds him of any other young corners he’s been around)  “I like his toughness.  I like his confidence and just how he goes about his job on a regular basis.  He’s obviously gotten thrown in the fire, which that was our choice, that’s not his.  So we’re expecting a lot out of him from that standpoint.  The thing I want to see is I just want to see improvement.  If he makes a mistake in this coverage and we fix it, I don’t want to see it the next week.  So that’s where (defensive backs coach) David’s (Gibbs) at with not only him, but with the whole group.  They’re all still young.  I mean, GQ (cornerback Glover Quin) needs to play better; (CB) Brice (McCain) needs to play a lot better.  It’s a group; it’s not about one guy.”

(on whether he’s given any thought to not playing WR Andre Johnson and resting his injured ankle)  “I’ll evaluate it.  Like I told y’all before, obviously he’s not feeling good today, but we don’t think there was a big setback or anything.  He will be day-to-day and we will be smart with Andre Johnson.  We’ve got a long way to go.”

(on how LT Rashad Butler played vs. Dallas)  “You know what?  I think our team felt very good about Rashad Butler and what he did in the game.  I thought he held his own.  The one sack he gave up was on our quarterback, not on him, and I think our football team, we were worried about the guy who was going to replace somebody, well he did his job.  And if he improves this week, that’s going to be very exciting.  He can improve in the run game and do some of those things, but we have to feel good about his first time stepping on the field.”

(on how G Mike Brisiel played vs. Dallas)  “Mike deserved more reps.  He got more reps this week than (G Antoine) Caldwell.  I think it was somewhere in 40 to 20-something, so we’re going to continue to play them both.  Mike has kind of stepped up and we feel like he deserves a little bit more, so we’ll keep going.  We’ll keep going until one of them takes it over.”

(on whether a veteran cornerback would help the secondary and if the Texans plan to work out any corners)  “No, we’re not going to work anybody out.  We’ve got our guys and we’re going with them.  Yeah, anybody can help.  It doesn’t matter if they’re old, young; if they can play, they can help, but like I said, we’ve got our guys and we’ve got to get them better and they’ve got to get better and we’re going to keep going.”

(on any injuries following Sunday’s game vs. Dallas)  “Yeah, we’re kind of beat us.  (FS) Eugene (Wilson) has got a little hamstring issue that will be day-to-day.  (LB Darryl) Sharpton’s got an ankle that will be day-to-day.  Obviously, (WR) Andre (Johnson); y’all know about Andre.  I think that’s about it other than a bunch of bumps and bruises, but we’ve got to get through it.” 

(on the offensive line’s performance in pass protection)  “We’ve got 11 sacks.  That is way too many.  I don’t care whose fault it is – mine, (QB) Matt’s (Schaub), the O-line – we’ve got to fix it.  Okay?  We’ve got to figure it out.  We’ve got way too many.”

(on whether SS Dominique Barber would start in place of FS Eugene Wilson if Wilson is unable to play)  “He (Barber) will get the reps if he’s (Wilson) not going, yeah.”

RB Arian Foster
(on accepting theme of, “moving on”) “Yes absolutely. We watched the film and correct some of the things outside and get ready to move on.’

(on after looking at the tape, what kind of judgment did he get) “We had a lot of opportunities to make plays to keep us in the game and to take control of the game and we just didn’t make them. That’s on us so we just got to look forward.”

(on if the Texans running backs could do a better job pass protecting) “We could all do a better job. We all had mistakes out there, but that’s what you go to practice for. You just got to move on.”

(on what’s the mood of the team right now) “Nothing’s really changed. We’re still very confident in what we do. We’re still excited about the season and what we got going on. We just got to go to work.”

(on was he surprised of the Texans offense’s low production compared to the previous two games) “We are expected to be a high octane offense. It was a little disappointed, but that’s football. They got guys on that side that play ball just as well as we do. We just got to execute a little better."

CB Kareem Jackson
(on what he learned in his college career under Alabama head coach Nick Saban that will help him in the NFL) “I just got to have that sharp memory out there. I just need go back to the things I’ve been doing when I was making plays and being successful. You just got stick back to what you do best. You got to be technique sound and this past game I don’t think I was. So I’m going to go back to doing that.”

(on how has the speed of the game changed from playing in the SEC) “It changed a little bit. You are going against guys who are faster than you are or as fast. In the college level not everybody is as fast as you are. Week-in and week-out you’re going to see elite talent. So you got to bring your ‘A’ game.”

(on the quarterbacks abilities in the NFL compared to the SEC) “ That’s definitely a difference. Every quarterback you see could be one of the best in the league. You just got to  be able to overcome adversity and make plays.”

WR Andre Johnson
(on what did he felt when heard the fans when he went down) “I don’t really pay much attention to that. I was in pretty bad pain when I was down on the ground. I really couldn’t tell you the reaction of the fans when it happened. I did hear a little cheer when I went back out there. I really couldn’t tell you what happened.”

(on how is his health today) “I’m about the same. My ankle’s sore. I reaggrivated the injury that I had, we’re just going to take the same approach as we did last week as far  as the treatment. We’ll probably turn it up a little bit more than it was last week and just seeing how it feels day-by-day.”

(on if the treatment on his ankle last week worked pretty well) “Yes it did. I felt great playing on it until I reaggrivated it again. Hopefully we can go back at it. We started early this morning on it and about to head back in there again.”

SS Bernard Pollard
(on looking at the game film) “We played hard for 40 plays. Like coach said, 41-60 was horrible. We as players have to take that and that have to offend us. As far as our defense goes with me speaking from the backend, our pass defense is horrible. We’re dead last. I felt that we were doing a great job with the run, but we have to come back. The weird thing about is that our turnaround last year was the Raiders. It’s crazy, but we need to turnaround at some point. We go to turn that corner.”

(on why are the Texans pass defense is horrible and how can it be fixed) “We can’t go out there and do the things that we want to do. We have to go and do what we’re being coached to do. I think that so many guys are making mistakes including myself. We’re making mistakes in the backend. It’s a team effort. It really is. It’s a defensive unit effort and we’re just not getting it done. I think going back to it this week we watched the film together and (head) Coach (Gary) Kubiak called the guys out. Like it or not, I think it’s going to light a fire under some guys butts. We got to get the job done.”

DE Antonio Smith
(on after looking at the game film did he come to a different conclusion of the game) “No, I think it’s about exactly the way we felt it was. They had a good plan and ran it. They made the plays when they needed to make it and we didn’t. I think the max protect kept us from getting a lot of pressure on them and the quick throws kept us from getting there as fast too. All in all when it comes down to it they made big plays. When you make big plays most of the time you win the game.”

(on was there anything surprising to him after watching the dame film) “There was nothing really surprising. It did surprise me that they changed the makeup of the offense that much. I didn’t think that they were going to throw quick passes and max protect and things like that. I thought that they were going to open it up a little bit and try to make big plays because I thought that was the kind offense they were.”

(on what was the mood of the team while watching the game film) “In a way it was a slow developing game. The feel wasn’t like it was in the preseason when it was electrifying. It was slow developing pick up pick up a third down and pick up a first down here. It was methodical for a minute. Then towards the latter part of the second quarter and into the third quarter things started to go a little haywire.”

T Eric Winston
(on what the offensive line need to do to improve) “Obviously just keeping (QB) Matt (Schaub) upright more. Overall, I thought that we were on our guys. We just need to stick on them a little bit better. A lot of people are saying that he’s holding it or it’s this guy or that guy it doesn’t matter. That’s the way we look at it. It doesn’t matter if he holds it for 15 seconds back there if he wants. We have to stay on them and somehow get them blocked and that’s just what we’re going to keep doing.”

(on not putting the blame on QB Matt Schaub) Yeah, I’ve heard that. I’ve heard that it was this guy or that guy. I don’t buy that stuff. We take it upon ourselves upfront that we’re going to be the guys that protect. If he needs to hold it for five or seven or 10 seconds then that’s what he needs to do and we need to get them blocked.”

(on what did head coach Gary Kubiak say to the offensive line) “Just overall, we got to play better. I think that’s obvious. We were out played on Sunday and the great thing about this league is that we get another chance to go out there make up for it this upcoming Sunday.”

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