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Houston Texans

Camp quotes: Day 9


Wideout Andre Johnson makes a move before suffering a groin strain.

The Texans went through a morning practice Saturday and will have the remainder of the weekend off. Wide receiver Andre Johnson will need the rest after suffering a groin injury.

Head coach Gary Kubiak

(on WR Andre Johnson's groin injury) "It just tightened up. We'll get it looked at this afternoon. Hopefully, he's fine."

(on the reaction of the crowd) "A groan came over everybody. Nobody wants to see him gimping around. Like I said, we'll get in there and get him looked at and we'll keep our fingers crossed and hopefully it's nothing."

(on WR Andre Johnson's practice) "He's a pretty good player. We pushed them to the limits today. It's the one week mark, and we're going to get a big break right now. We wanted to find out where we were. We practiced well, very physical, guys pushing through. We're a better football team after a week this year than we were last year. Long, long way to go, but I like the way they're working."

(on what stands out after a week of camp) "I think we're mentally a tougher football team. I think we're getting physically tougher. We still have to continue to reach another level. We're trying to harden up our football team a little bit on both sides of the ball. We think that's something we can definitely improve upon, and I think we're headed in the right direction from that standpoint."

(on what goes through his mind when he sees a player like WR Andre Johnson pull up) "That's the worst nightmare for a coach, any player going down, but (especially) a guy like him. Getting hurt, it's part of football, unfortunately, and there's not a play that you don't hold your breath, in all honesty. You've just got to keep pushing through and hope for the best and hopefully it's our time to stay healthy. We've been pretty fortunate through this camp; we've been pretty darn good. Keep our fingers crossed with him and see what happens."

(on RB Mike Bell's injury) "He's got a little hamstring problem. To be honest with you, he's not in the shape the rest of our football team is and we found that out real fast. He got gassed the first night he was out here. He got gassed earlier today, and he's not up with our team. Unfortunately, that's what happens when you bring guys in the middle of camp or stuff. If they're not in excellent shape, they get exposed in a way very, very quick. I just don't think he was in very good condition."

(on special teams and who else could return punts) "Once we got to that period today, they were gone. So to sit there and put too much evaluation into that particular period and what we were doing, let's wait and see in the game. I don't think you ever really know who's got the courage to go back there and catch that punt with those 11 guys breathing down their neck and make a play. We know Jacoby (Jones) can do it, but it's also important that somebody else can go back there and do it. We'll sort that out during the preseason."

(on what he likes about LB Zac Diles) "I like his toughness. A very tough kid, a very physical player. Has a nose for the ball. Good things tend to happen to him. You hear me say that about players from time to time, for some reason the ball ends up in his hands sometimes out here at practice. The key to him being a great player is the mental part of the game. Hopefully, we're making some progress there."

(on using the defensive helmet transmitter at practice) "I'll do it all next week. We'll use the transmitter all next week."

(on who will be talking to the player) "(Linebackers coach) Johnny (Holland) will be the one talking. We're going to put it in DeMeco's (Ryans) helmet and Will's (Demps) helmet. If both of those guys are on the field, DeMeco is live. If something were to happen to DeMeco, then we would operate through Will."

(on one area of the team that has done a lot this week) "There have been many. It would be hard for me to put a finger on one of them. When you go into the first week of training camp, players have a lot to prove to each other. I think you walk out of here today and the guys kind of know, they know who they can count on. They know who was in shape and who was ready to go, and I think if you look at the overall group I think that has kind of happened. I don't want to pinpoint one group or one player; I think it's been a group effort."

(on DT Frank Okam and his motor as a player) "I saw a good motor in OTAs. I saw a little bit of a lack of it sometimes here at camp. But I've seen him bounce back the last few days. That's what we drafted; we drafted a talented, big kid that didn't play with a motor all the time. It's our job to find his motor on a consistent basis. If he does that, he'll be a very productive player in this league."

(on if it being a matter of things coming easy to Okam) "I think he's just always played, 'Hey, I'm the biggest guy on this damn field. If I go here, they can't block me.' In this league, if you go there, they can block you. There are good players in this league, so now he's having to be more of a technician and those types of things."

(on the quarterback situation with QB Shane Boyd and QB Alex Brink) "That's a hard call for me right now. If you're asking me to make a call, I don't know. I'm hoping I can keep both of them around here for a good period of time in camp so I can play them both. That could be a problem if we start to have some issues around the team from the standpoint of keeping four guys. They're both doing well and working hard. They don't get a lot of reps and a lot of time with those guys. You don't know what they are until you just throw them to the wolves. They're going to get thrown to the wolves here at some point."

(on if Brink and Boyd will play against the Broncos) "I'm sure hoping so. I know one of them may get a great deal of time. I may choose to just play one of them in that game and hold the other one for the next week. I'll see"

(on if he still wants to keep three quarterbacks) "I'll carry three if they deserve to be on the team. That's how I'll carry three."

TE Owen Daniels

(on making a lot of catches last season and his expectations for this season) "I'd like to do the same. I'm lucky to be a part of this offense, where a tight end is a big part of this passing game. And just looking to stay consistent, play in all the games and make plays whenever I have an opportunity to make plays. And we've got Andre (Johnson) back this year, so as long as he's healthy, he'll probably get a bunch of balls. There might be less for everyone to have along the way, but hopefully I can help the team get in the end zone a little bit more than I did last year."

(on his blocking game) "I think I'm improving. I think I've been improving every year that I've had playing time in. I think this new run scheme that we have in helps out a lot. We have less plays to worry about. I think last year, there were 10 to 15 running plays we had to worry about. This year, it's probably about five or six, running out a bunch of different looks. But I'm focused on being more solid in that spot and being able to hold up. As long as I can do that, I can be on the field. I can be on the field every play to where the defense won't know exactly what we're doing with our running and passing.

(on his role as a first-down receiver) "I like that role. Whether you call it a 'possession guy' or whatever, as long as I am keeping our offense on the field and putting ourselves in the position to score, I'm happy with that. If I don't get into the end zone, that's fine, as long as we're winning. I like to make my catches worthwhile you know, not just get a couple of yards at a time, but get first downs whenever I can."

(on his rising popularity in fantasy football picks) "I've got friends coming up to me all the time saying that they've got me on their fantasy squad, even strangers out here saying that I've helped them out. That flatters me when they tell me people pick me up and they've got me on their team. I feel bad if I don't help them out. That's kind of cool that people write that in magazines. I guess I'd rather not be a sleeper. I'd rather be a guy that people are expecting to do well, but I guess that gives me more motivation."

WR Andre Johnson

(on his injury) "I just tweaked my groin a little bit. That's about it. Nothing really major. I'll go in and get some treatment over the next two days and I'll be fine."

(on if he thinks the injury is serious) "No, nothing serious. I didn't tear anything or anything like that. It's hot out here. Sometimes, those things happen; you have little tweaks and stuff like that. Other than that, I'm fine. It's no big deal. I didn't tear anything. I slowed down, actually, when I felt it tighten up on me. That was a good thing. Other than that, I don't think it will be a problem."

(on what happened at practice) "Normally, when you have a pull or something, you can tell when you're running by the way it feels. I didn't feel anything pop or anything like that. I just felt it tighten up real tight on me. When I felt that, I just slowed down. I didn't feel a pop or anything like that afterward, so like I said, I'm fine. I'll get treatment for a few days and I'll be fine."

(on the reaction from the crowd when he pulled up) "Yeah, you never want to see anything happen to a player. You don't want to see any guys get injured or anything like that. But things happen. I'm just glad it's training camp right now. It's not the regular season."

(on almost going down with an injury) "Well, you know I missed a lot of time last year. I don't want to see myself go down."

(on if he was talking to QB Matt Schaub after practice about his injury) "Yeah, that's what we were talking about. We're fine. It's something that happens. Like I said, I don't think it's anything serious. I'll be fine."

DT Amobi Okoye

(on assistant head coach/offense Alex Gibbs) "He's a great coach. Everybody knows how long he's been in the game and just how respectable he is. He brings a different scheme to our offense, so there's a whole different mindset you have to really think about when you're going against our offense. So, I'm looking forward to seeing him do a whole lot of big things this year, that whole offensive ling group and the whole offense."

(on if going against coach Gibbs' scheme helps improve his game) "Of course, because a lot of the teams in the league kind of have a similar scheme. If you can play great in that scheme, I think everything else can be a little simplified to you. If you can go against him and his scheme and what he's telling his offensive line to do, and you can beat that, you should be good."

(on what has to happen for the Texans to have a winning season) "First, we have to stop the run. That's point blank, period. Every team that can run the ball is going to win, or has a better chance of winning. As soon as we stop the run, then we can get after the quarterback. Send me and Mario (Williams), everybody else, just let us loose and let us run and get the quarterback, and that's exactly what we have to do."

(on if stopping the run is more of an attitude they have to develop) "That's a matter of attitude, scheme, technique and everything involved in it. It's the whole ballgame. It's the whole enchilada. If you can put everything together, that's going to get it done."

(on how his second training camp has gone for him) "It's going great. A whole lot easier."

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