Brian Cushing working through concussion protocol

Brian Cushing was limited in Thursday's practice. Cushing is in the midst of the league's five-stage concussion protocol. Head coach Gary Kubiak expects the inside linebacker to clear the protocol by Friday.

Cushing led the defense with nine tackles, one quarterback hit, and a forced fumble despite leaving in the third quarter of Sunday's game against Seattle. Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips hopes to have the Pro Bowl inside linebacker back in time for the Texans next matchup at San Francisco.

"It always makes a difference when a star player is out of there," Phillips said of Sunday's 23-20 overtime loss. "We had them down fourth-and-4. They only had one drive in the whole game. They had 225 yards of total offense when regulation was over. They were 20 percent on third downs. I think we played good without him, but you can always play better if you have a great player in there."

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