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Defense looks ahead to Drew Brees, Saints

For the second-consecutive week, the Texans top-ranked defense will face a Super Bowl winning quarterback for joint practice.

Not bad for preseason work.

"It's not bad experience at all," Brian Cushing said. "Playing against two of the greatest ever, back-to-back in two practice weeks. Like I said, it's definitely beneficial for us."

After two practices in full pads against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, the Texans head to New Orleans for work against the Saints. The two teams will have a joint practice on Thursday prior to Saturday's preseason game.

In preseason, being competitive is the goal more than game planning against the opponent, according to Cushing, whether it's winning one-on-ones or team drills in practice or the game itself.

After weeks of practicing against teammates in training camp, players welcome the opportunity to compete against other teams.

"It's always good competing against those guys," Johnathan Joseph said. "Well-coached, coached by (Sean) Payton. Obviously, they have Drew Brees over there, so we'll get some good work against him in a couple days and a preseason game. I think it'll be great for this team."

Saturday's matchup marks the eighth time in the last nine preseasons that the Texans and Saints will face each other. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT on ABC-13 and SportsRadio 610.

Check out some of the best shots from Day 18 of training camp practice.

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