The Texans practiced in full pads on Monday morning for the first time in their 2010 training camp.
Quick-hit observations and notes from the field:
- Defensive end Mario Williams sat out another practice with soreness in his hip flexor. Head coach Gary Kubiak said Williams received an injection this morning to reduce swelling. With six weeks before their regular season opener, the Texans aren't taking any chances with the 2006 No. 1 overall pick. "It's going to be day-to-day," Kubiak said. "We'll watch it through tomorrow I'm sure, but the bottom line (is) it's too early in this thing. We're going to get it exactly the way we want it before we proceed forward."
- Rookie Trindon Holliday, who has electrified as a punt returner but struggled as a wide receiver, did not practice becuase of an undisclosed injury. He rode a stationary bicycle on the sidelines for parts of practice. With wide receiver Glenn Martinez (hamstring) also out, David Anderson shared punt return reps with Jacoby Jones.
- There was a skirmish in 11-on-11s involving safety Bernard Pollard and right tackle Eric Winston. No hard feelings, Winston said afterward. "I think he's got the defense going," Winston said. "Now at the same time, if he steps over that line, it's up to us to put him back over there, and that's what competition's all about. We're going to go inside and we're going to go have lunch together and we're going to start laughing and making jokes, so it's not something that's carrying over... it's left out on the field."
- Pollard simply doesn't stop talking, whether it's to teammates or coaches. It doesn't matter which side of the ball they're on, or whether Pollard's on the field or on the sidelines. He barks orders, discusses coverages, talks trash and offers encouragement. It's going to make for an entertaining training camp, and it's not as though his words are falling on deaf ears: Kubiak said yesterday that Pollard is becoming a leader on the team.
- Rookie running back Ben Tate reeled off some nice runs in his first professional practice in pads. One came on his first touch in 11-on-11s, when he caught a screen pass from John David Booty on the left and cut it back right for a 30-yard gain. "I think players see his talent," Kubiak said. "As a young guy now, it's about earning respect of other people here that you could help on Sundays."
- Booty, the third-team quarterback, did a nice job of moving the offense down the field in the unscripted portion of 11-on-11s at the end of practice. He capped it off with a perfectly-placed deep pass down the left sideline that wide receiver Bobby Williams caught for a diving touchdown, just beyond the reach of cornerback Fred Bennett.
- After practice, Texans president Jamey Rootes unveiled the team's 2010 lottery game. Prizes include a Texans VIP suite weekend and a VIP season-ticket package for two years. Tickets go on sale today for $5.
- Among the spectators at practice were Jim Corbett, NFL writer for the USA Today, and veteran sportscaster Spencer Tillman.