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Two concussions among Texans’ injuries from Jets game

Posted Aug 16, 2011

Running back Derrick Ward and rookie linebacker Cheta Ozougwu suffered concussions against the New York Jets on Monday night.

A day after the Texans beat the New York Jets 20-16 in their preseason opener, head coach Gary Kubiak detailed a litany of injuries to his club.

Running back Derrick Ward and rookie linebacker Cheta Ozougwu suffered concussions on Monday night. Kubiak was optimistic about Ward making a timely recovery but said that Ozougwu, a seventh-round pick from Rice, spent the night in Methodist Hospital.

“Evaluated him after the game, didn’t like what was going on," Kubiak said. "Took him to the hospital; he spent the night at the hospital. He was resting and doing fine when I went to see him and his family a while ago, but obviously took a pretty good shot, so it’s going to take some time."

Guards Antoine Caldwell and Kasey Studdard have ankle injuries and will miss “considerable time,” Kubiak said. Caldwell has a high-ankle sprain that Kubiak said will “take some time” to heal, while Studdard’s injury is “more than that” and still being evaluated.

Tackle Rashad Butler, who backs up Duane Brown and Eric Winston, is day-to-day with a hamstring injury. Backup center Cody Wallace, who left Monday night’s game with an apparent leg injury, is fine.

The Texans are especially thin at running back in the wake of Ward's concussion. Arian Foster, Steve Slaton and Ben Tate all missed last night’s game with hamstring injuries. Kubiak said that Foster should return to practice on Tuesday morning, but Slaton “probably will not be ready” for the Texans’ home game against New Orleans on Saturday.

Kubiak couldn’t give a timetable on Tate, a second-round pick from Auburn in 2010 who missed last season with an ankle injury.

“Tate is moving very slowly,” Kubiak said. “His progress in coming back has been very slow, so I can’t sit here and tell you that he’s going to be ready to go. I sure hope he is. We were hoping that he’d be ready to get back on the field. Ogbie’s (Chris Ogbonnaya) fine, he’s just beat up from last night’s game, and of course (Javarris) Williams is still here. Slaton’s gonna miss some more time... so we’ve got some issues at that position and at the offensive line position as we wake up tomorrow, probably more so than anything.”

Kubiak was asked if the injuries will necessitate the Texans signing new players this week.

“I think we’re at the point right now – I can’t speak for the addition parts and stuff like that – but I can say when you get to this point in training camp, you’ve got to get creative when you start having problems like this,” Kubiak said. “You’re three weeks away from put ting your team together. Yeah, I’d love to go get two or three running backs and a couple offensive linemen. That sounds easy, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. So what we’ll have to do is get creative in what we’re doing going into the New Orleans game. We’ll have to adjust practice and what we’re doing at practice and how we’re practicing, how many groups we’re practicing.”

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