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Diles talks about return from injury


Linebacker Zac Diles suffered a season-ending injury last year when he broke his leg during a special teams drill. This offseason, Diles has become a fixture at Reliant Stadium, rehabbing with team trainers to make sure he is healthy for training camp.

Brooke Bentley (Texans TV): Zac, you've been injured, but now you're back rehabbing. Let's actually go back to last year when the injury occurred. You were having the best season of your career, leading the Texans in tackles. How disappointed were you to suffer such an injury?

Zac Diles: It was tough. Like you said, I was having a pretty good season until the injury. Looking back, sitting at home you get a lot of time to reflect. You just hope to come back next year - not hope - but come back next year and just do the same thing and some more, be able to finish the season and just add to what I was doing. So, I'm excited about (it). The rehab is going well and should be back soon.

{QUOTE}Brooke Bentley: It was very much a freak injury; talk about what happened.

Zac Diles: I was doing a drill and I went to run and my jersey got tugged from the back a little bit and my leg was planted in the ground. So, I'm spinning around at the same time and I've got 240 pounds of pressure on my leg. And then I got kicked, and my leg came over and just exploded. I kicked it. You know, it's like when you twirl a straw around and you flick it - that's how it was, and it just popped. It was just quick.

Brooke Bentley: What kind of rehab have you going through and where you are now in the rehab process?

Zac Diles: I'm actually rehabbing here at the facilities here with Roland (Ramirez) and our trainers here. We started off light, just doing little single-leg lifts, little three-pound weights so I could get the motion back in my legs. But now I'm running again. I'm on the treadmill, running 70 percent of my body weight and I'm jumping over hurdles and stuff now. So the rehab is going really well.

Brooke Bentley: What do you use for inspiration? I'm sure watching teams in the playoffs was a little bit hard for you. Do you look at that and think, 'Hey, I want to be back out there. I want to be at the Pro Bowl next year. I want to be at that point in the playoffs next year?'

Zac Diles: Yeah, when you see all of that. Actually, I went out to New York and watched the Giants game when they played the Eagles. I was with Danny Clark and just watching the game I was like, 'I miss playing football so much,' and even watching the Monday night game here, coming back and on the sidelines with my crutches, just watching the game. That was my first real big injury. I had never had to sit out like that. So it was tough, but like I said, I just can't wait to come back out next year and just continue on playing.

Brooke Bentley: Now you have a new defensive coordinator in Frank Bush. What do you think of that hire?

Zac Diles: I'm excited. I'm excited. (Defensive coordinator) Frank (Bush) has been here since I've been here. I know what he brings to the table: his leadership, his energy and his smarts. So I'm excited about next year and the future.

Brooke Bentley: (Defensive coordinator) Frank (Bush) has talked about bringing an attacking, aggressive defense to the Texans. What do you see the defense being like? What do you think will be the philosophy of the defense next season?

Zac Diles: Like a lot last year, as far as D-line-wise, you know, there was a lot of side-to-side. You know, they weren't really getting off the ball; they would run sideways. That's what Frank's talking about. You know, we're going to be a more aggressive, up-the-field type of defense. So I think that will open it up a lot more defensive line-wise for them to make more plays. So just to go out there and like I said, it's going to be a new energy around the whole facility. People are pumped up, excited. I'm excited. I mean, I can't wait to get back out there and it should be fun in 2009.

Brooke Bentley: The Texans saw the development of Xavier Adibi last season. Of course, now the Texans have lost Morlon Greenwood at linebacker. Talk about how that unit is shaping up right now in the offseason.

Zac Diles: Well, you know, I haven't really seen "X" (Xavier Adibi) or anybody lately. But I talked to Morlon (Greenwood) yesterday and DeMeco (Ryans). He's (Greenwood) in high spirits. He said he pretty much could see it (coming), but it's unfortunate. Especially for me, it's a crazy business. Because you know, everybody since I've been here, DeMeco's the only one left. It's me and DeMeco. You know, Danny's (Clark) gone, Shantee (Orr), Shawn Barber, now Morlon. It's crazy as a business, but like I said, we still have the pieces here and we're probably going to add some more. So like I said, it's going to be fun in 2009."

Brooke Bentley: When do you see yourself coming back?

Zac Diles: I'll probably be back at the latest, training camp. I mean, like I said, I don't want to rush it by coming back too soon, too early. The latest I'll be back is during training camp. As far as playing, I'm still crunk about getting back out on the field. It's like, you really can't even think about it anymore. You know, it's a new year, a new leg. I'm growing my hair out, too. You know, I'm braiding my hair. It's new everything. I'm just excited. It's going to be fun all around. I've been talking to D-Rob (Dunta Robinson), everybody in the locker room. Everybody's excited. I'm even more excited. So I can't wait to get back out there.

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