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Camp report: Day 6


The defense continued to look strong as defensive end Rosevelt Colvin came up with a ball that was popped into the air. Running back Chris Brown had to sit out of practice again with a sore back.

Brown still out: Running back Chris Brown missed a third straight day of camp Wednesday with back spasms and was treated with an injection. The sixth-year pro took the day to rest off the injection, and coach Gary Kubiak thinks Brown will need a couple more days off before he is ready to practice.

"Naturally, I want him out here playing and competing and getting ready to go with this team," Kubiak said. "It's just something we've got to deal with. I think a lot of Chris as a player and a person. It's just unfortunate that this has happened, but we're going to do everything we can to get him right.

"It would be easy to sit here and say, 'I hope he's out here tomorrow.' But we're probably looking at a few days if this injection goes good. Am I disappointed he's not on the field? Yes. I'm not disappointed in Chris. I just know he can help this team. We got to make sure we get him right."

Missing time has been a huge disappointment for Brown, who the Texans signed from Tennessee to be their No. 2 guy behind Ahman Green.

With Brown on the sidelines, second-year pro Darius Walker, third-year pro Chris Taylor and rookie Steve Slaton are getting a lot of carries and impressing coaches in the process.

{QUOTE}Taylor has been playing some at fullback to increase his chances of making the team. Brown will return to a crowded backfield where he will have to work to catch up with his teammates.

Texans bring in backs: On Thursday morning, the Texans will work out several running backs available on the free agent market. Headlining the group is Mike Bell, who played at Denver the last two years. As a rookie in 2006, Bell rushed for 677 yards and scored eight touchdowns for the Broncos.

Kubiak said the team could use an additional back if Brown is forced to the sidelines for an extended period of time. The coach doesn't want to wear down the team's four ball carriers.

"We're concerned," Kubiak said. "We're concerned about having just those four kids right now and running them too hard, but we'll see. We're going to work out a group of guys tomorrow including Bell and we'll have to make a decision. I would like to have another pair of legs."
Zone scheme made simple: Assistant head coach Alex Gibbs joined the Texans because he wanted to help improve the team's ground game by installing a zone blocking scheme similar to the one he ran in Denver.

The scheme made sound complicated, but it's a simple concept: offensive linemen work in tandem to block players in their zone, instead of having a predetermined man to block.

The team started installing the scheme the first day of camp, and the transition has been pretty seamless. Most of the offensive calls have remained the same and the team has even cut back on their running plays.

"We came in here, and we were doing it and teaching it," Kubiak said about the zone scheme. "The calls haven't changed a lick. We brought the expert (Gibbs) in here to make sure we're doing it the right way.

"If anything, we've cut back but our players are familiar with it and getting more and more familiar with it every day. The thing we want to do with running the ball, we want to back off, get simpler, cut down on plays and get good at the one's we're going to run."

The Texans did some zone blocking last season and they still will run some of the gap plays that former offensive coordinator Mike Sherman installed.

"We still do some gap stuff because Ahman (Green) does some of those things real well and (Mike Sherman) had some gap schemes from Green Bay," Kubiak said. "We've maintained those. It's not like we've abandoned them. It's just that the majority of our work is in the zone scheme."

Injury notes: Wide receiver Jacoby Jones went through individual tests but did not participate in practice. Kubiak was encouraged by Jones' progress.

"I think he's pretty close," Kubiak said. "I've been watching him during our individuals today, go through some of the ropes and stuff. We just want to be smart with him and with what we're doing. Plus, we've got some of these young guys we really want to look at. It'll give us a chance to give him a few days rest."

Tackle Scott Jackson sat out again with plantar fasciitis and linebacker Chaun Thompson still is nursing an injured hamstring.

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