Taylor was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year last season after tallying 60 tackles, 13.5 sacks, two interceptions and two defensive touchdowns.
Miami Dolphins head coach Cam Cameron and defensive end Jason Taylor spoke to the Houston media via conference calls on Wednesday morning about their upcoming visit to Reliant Stadium to take on the Texans on Oct. 7.
Miami Dolphins head coach Cam Cameron(on his team's mindset going into this game) "Obviously, we haven't gotten off to the start that we wanted to and we have a lot of areas we need to improve in and that's been our focus. We have to get some things corrected. The only way we get that is to get back at today, which we've already done. I'll be on the practice field shortly and we'll start getting things corrected on the field."
(on how Dom Capers has been as your offensive coordinator) "Dom (Capers) and I have known each other for a long time. He's one of the finest in this business. We have some areas defensively that he and I both know, we have to get solved. We're not playing the way that we would like to play defensively, but the Dom Capers I know is going to do everything he can to get this thing headed in the right direction. He's a tremendous football coach, tremendous man, and a guy that I feel very fortunate to have on my staff."
(on what he looked at when he brought QB Trent Green in) "We had no questions about him medically. What we needed, first and foremost, to get this offense headed in the right direction, was leadership. He's done that. He hasn't played as well as he would like to play throughout the course of each game, but what he has brought, he's brought some confidence. He's brought some leadership that I think has helped (RB) Ronnie Brown. It's helped our offensive line. Obviously, we have a big challenge this week with Houston's front. Those guys are very talented, very active. He's just brought a confidence to our offense that wasn't here last year, and really wasn't here in the recent past. However, he knows there are some things that he has to clean up, some things that he has to improve on. He's like most veteran competitors, sometimes their strength become their weakness in the fact that sometimes you try to do too much. We have to get (QB) Trent (Green) just taking what is there. Leadership is what we needed and he's brought that and he's brought some confidence to our offense."
(on what area has been the biggest disappointment so far) "There are a lot of things that we need to improve on. We all know in this business it all ties together. If you can play better on offense, that helps your defense, defense can get the ball back. It all fits. We've just been in a situation right now where one week it's been the special teams played really well and then the next week, we give up a big play. Defensively, we've played good in spurts, but we haven't been able to get people off the field on third down and that's lead to people's ability to be patient with the run. Offensively, we've missed on too many scoring opportunities. Is the any one area we're going to say, 'hey, this is where we are disappointed in," and point to? I'm going to. Right now, all three phases are areas that we have to get better in."
(on his team's health) "We've actually, prior to this week, have had, probably, typical injuries. Obviously, (S) Yeremiah Bell being out and (LB) Zach Thomas being out, hits right at the heart of our defense. You look around the league, we're probably fortunate to some degree. You look what has happened there in Houston, you go into a game with that many receivers out. It's just part of what we do. It's part of this business. Injuries are just something you have to deal with. Our heath is not our problem."
(on what impresses him about the Texans so far) "They're an improving football team and I think they've made good decisions in the people they have on defense. It's a young, talented group. They get to the football as a unit as good as any group that we've played this year. And they address the issue that they needed to address offensively and that was the quarterback position. (QB) Matt (Schaub), I had a chance to coach Matt in the senior bowl, him and (QB) Phillip Rivers. They were two of the brightest and most accurate quarterbacks in the history of college football if you go back and look at it. They're an improving football team that has made some really good decisions with the people they are playing with."
(on what makes DE Jason Taylor so special) "I think his competitiveness. I think he's very self-critical. I think the great players that we've all been around or you just sense something about them, he's not satisfied being one of the best, he would tell you he wants to be the best, the best defensive end in this league. People are making it very challenging for him and he understands too. He's like everyone else on this team, we all, coaches and players, we all have to up our level of play. We have to demand more of ourselves and I know (DE) Jason Taylor will be one of those guys that does it."
(on inconsistent play week to week) "Sometimes the opponent has a lot to do with that, whether it be the Dallas Cowboys. Some teams have really played well against us, however, we've done enough things in every game, unforced errors, that have cost us ball games. Again, just back to same thing I said earlier, we've got to get these things corrected. They don't go away by themselves. Until we do something about it, nothing's going to change."
Miami Dolphins DE Jason Taylor
(on what the focus is defensively to try and turn things around) "Stopping the run, number one is our biggest problem. We're letting teams run the ball way too much and then when we do get them in third down, because of their success on first and second down, we're allowing them to have third and three or four or five, which are a lot more manageable than third and long, so our main focus is stopping the run and we haven't done it for four weeks and we've got to get it corrected this week."
(on if he's been on a team that's struggled so much against the run) "No, I haven't. Since I've been here, we haven't really had that problem. We've had times where teams have had success running the ball, but overall we were able to dictate to them what we wanted them to do based on us stopping the run and pressuring the quarterback on third down. We don't have that right now, but we're constantly searching for the answer and the solution and we'll go to work and try to figure that out."
(on the Texans' struggles in the run game) "We're not even going to focus on the Texans per se. We're obviously looking at what they do and their tendencies and what they like to do and all that, but we've got to get ourselves corrected. It doesn't matter who our opponent is, the way we're playing right now, we couldn't beat anybody playing the run the way we are right now. So our number one focus is to get our own individual techniques and fundamentals taken care of and then number two is preparing for them."
(on how much it would help the defense to have LB Zach Thomas back) "It'll help a lot. I mean, when you lose someone like Zach, who is one of the best in the business at what he does, it's always tough. But you've got to have guys step up, whether he plays or not. Hopefully he does, but we all know his situation and if we can get him back, it'll be a huge help."
(on what he remembers from the Texans-Dolphins game last year) "I know that we gave up a couple big plays. I think (WR) Andre (Johnson) caught a touchdown on us on a long pass, kind of gave them a chance to, actually gave them the win. We played well against the run; I think they had 50-something yards rushing the football last year and I know we missed a two-point conversion at the end to tie it up."
(on Dom Capers as a coach) "Dom is great. He understands. He obviously knows what he's doing. He's kind of one of the innovators of this style of defense and I know it's been frustrating for him not being able to stop the run with the problems we've had for the last four weeks. But I've learned a lot off of Dom in the last couple years. And obviously we had some success together last year, and we're obviously all called on right now and needing to find an answer and to kind of lead this defense back out of the hole."
(on if there was a difficult adjustment when Dom Capers came in and changed the defense) "Last year was the real adjustment because he did some things different than we had done when (Texans defensive coordinator) Richard Smith was here. But you know, this year, with him really taking over totally, it's really been a lot of the same. I mean, we've changed up a few things, but for the most part we're doing the same things we've done for the last couple years so the transition's gotten easier over time, obviously."
(on if it's kind of funny to have Richard Smith now running the Texans' defense) "Yes. Richard was here for a year and we enjoyed working with him, and he's got the guys there playing well. I mean, they're running around and flying to the ball and playing with a lot of energy and that's kind of who he is. He brings that to a team and they're obviously a reflection of their coordinator."
(on if Dom Capers has strict scheduling habits) "Yes, he's a very organized, succinct person. And he knows what he wants and how he wants in and when he wants it and certain number of plays run. He's very scheduled and organized and it's good to have that discipline and create kind of a routine of doing things and I think it makes everybody more comfortable to know when and where you have to be and how and why you have to do a certain thing."