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10 questions with Diles


Linebacker Zac Diles was the Texans' leading tackler at the time of his season-ending injury in November of 2008.

Linebacker Zac Diles was the Texans' leading tackler last season when he suffered a season-ending leg injury in practice on Nov. 5. A seventh-round draft pick in 2007, Diles was the Texans' starting strongside linebacker before his injury.

Diles sat down with to talk about his lenghty rehab and his expectations for the upcoming season.

1. OTAs start on Monday. You're making your way back from a broken leg from last season. How's your recovery coming?

"It's coming along really well. I went to the doctor on Monday and got cleared to participate in all the offseason drills, and it's going along good. This was my first week out there running with the fellas and everything, so it was good to be back."

*2. What kind of exercises have you been doing over the past few weeks? *

"Man, I've been out there with the trainers doing everything you can think of: change of direction, cone drills, gassers. It was a long period, but it put me in great shape to come out here and participate with these guys, so it was well worth it."

**3. Will you still be a bit limited physically during OTAs?


"Yeah, I'm still going to be here and there. I'm probably going to just do the seven-on-seven here and there. I don't think I'll be doing team (drills) so far. I'm just going to take baby steps on my way back. I'm still kind of tender in the area (that the injury occured), but I'm going to just take baby steps coming back in."

{QUOTE}**4. How excited are you to be able to get back on the field?


"Very excited. It's been a long, long time. November 5, it was a long time ago – a day that will forever live in infamy in my mind. But I'm excited to get back out there on the field."

*5. The Texans drafted Brian Cushing this offseason, and the coaches have said they expect him to play right away at the SAM (strongside linebacker). What goes through your mind when you see a player get drafted at your position in the first round? *

"Oh, you already know what time it is when a guy gets drafted in the first round. But they did a little movement around here in the linebacker corps, so he's going to be playing SAM, DeMeco (Ryans) at MIKE, and they moved me over to WILL. So I'm going to be competing with Xavier (Adibi) over there at WILL, so it should be a good fit out there. I'm pretty sure he'll (Cushing) come out there and bring a lot of energy, so it's going to be a good look."

**6. Is it going to be difficult to switch to the WILL? You've already played a couple of linebacker positions on this team.


"Yeah, I've been all throughout the defense, so why not play WILL this year? I played MIKE my first year, SAM last year, so not really. SAM and WILL pretty much correlate with each other; it's just on the other side of the ball. I mean, it's the same drop, same read, pretty much. It's just on the other side of the ball and I just don't have to be up on the tight end any more."

*7. Another linebacker that the team added this offseason is Cato June. What have you seen so far from him during workouts? *

"Man, Cato has athleticism. He prides himself on his hands, his ability to catch. He's a funny dude, and he brings that veteran leadership into the locker room also. He has a Super Bowl ring. He brings a lot to the table, so it's good to feed off of and get the knowledge from guys like that."

*8. You guys are starting to see what the defense is going to look like in meetings. What have you seen about it that has you excited for the season? *

"It puts you in position to make plays. It's pretty similar to what we were doing last year, so there's really not that much change, but

like I said, this defense just puts you in a really good position to make plays. It should be fun. I'm looking forward to getting out there and running around and doing these plays in the next couple of months. It's going to be a good look."

*9. Defensive coordinator Frank Bush has said that the defense will be more aggressive, more attacking. Is that what you're expecting to see on the field? *

"Oh, yeah. You could just go out there to our walkthroughs and he'll let you know, 'We go; go get it.' So I'm excited about it. He brings another kind of energy to the table, too. When Frank talks, people listen. So it's going to be fun."

**10. Finally, a two-part question: What is your favorite and least favorite thing about OTAs?


"My favorite thing is you're done by like 12:30 or 1 p.m., so then you just have the rest of the day to relax. But man, the 7 a.m. meetings are going to be crucial. That's definitely my least favorite part."

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