Head coach Gary Kubiak spoke to the media Friday afternoon following practice.
Head coach Gary Kubiak
(on today's practice) "We practiced well. And we actually added a little bit to our practice today to get us some more reps. (We are) just trying to do things differently as the week goes on and find out what works out best for us as a group. But our attention to detail has been good."
(on practicing outside) "I'd rather be out here all the time. Unless, we need dome work or something because it's much better on our players' legs to be out here with this nice field that we have. Hopefully the weather will cooperate."
(on any lineup changes) "It doesn't look like (DE) Antwan (Peek) will be available. I think (C) Mike (Flanagan) has a chance. I think there is still a chance for Mike. What we'll do is bring him in here tomorrow and work him out and see where he is tomorrow. Probably work him before the game, but chances are Antwan will be down and Mike is still a game time decision."
(on whether C Drew Hodgdon will remain active) "Well, I don't know because if Mike can go, Steve (McKinney) can always be the back up center going into the game. We've got some issues in some other areas so I'd much rather play with the seven o-linemen if we possibly can."
(on the returners) "You'll see (WR Edell) Shepherd returning kicks. (CB) Phillip (Buchanon) returning punts, so that's where we'll be. We're just trying to give Shepherd the chance to catch up with us on what we're doing and everything. He's only been here for what, three weeks? Four weeks? It's just taking him some time offensively because he's been suiting up and he's been a big part of that, had something happened. So we're trying to bring him along and (special teams coordinator) Joe (Marciano) feels better about him every week and feels much better about him this week, so he'll go."
(on Texans owner Bob McNair's patience with the teams' 0-3 start) "It means a lot. Bob (McNair) is very supportive in everything that we do. I understand the frustrations, and I understand that we all want it to happen yesterday. That's the way this business works, but I feel good about our plan. We've had a lot of turnover and a lot of other things, and that's on me. I think that's best for this team in the long haul. And we're going to continue to get better. The work is tremendous. I've been on some teams that know how to work, and know how to prepare, and this football team's preparation is excellent. The results need to be better and keep fighting until they get better. But I like the way they're going about their business. And we're no different from you guys, we want a 'W' and want to feel better each week just like everybody else, and we won't stop working until that happens."
(on one area that is not a concern) "First off, I feel very good about our receivers right now. I think we've got some guys that can make some plays. I think we can be a team that can go out and throw the ball a bunch if that was the way to be successful in the long haul. We can't do that; we can't go throw it down-in and down-out right now. But I feel very good about the people we went and acquired, people like (DE) Anthony Weaver and what he's bringing to our football team. And I think he's going to play here a long, long time and be a leader on our defensive side of the ball. I feel great about some of our young players and the way they're playing. I like the progress of (QB) David Carr. There are a lot of good things, but you don't talk much about them when you're not winning. And that's fair, that's the way it should be. But there are some things that are good that are coming out of each week. But they're not good enough until we start winning some football games. And I know that and the players know that. And we all understand that."
(on the tight ends) "I think our young tight end (Owen Daniels) has a chance to be a great player. I can (also) tell you a concern also along those lines when I look at (TE) Owen Daniels and I look at (LB) DeMeco (Ryans) and I look at (DE) Mario (Williams), and I look at some of these young players on our football team, they have not missed one day of camp, one day of practice, and this is a long road, the NFL season. And those players I am asking a great deal from. But what I'm hoping is that those guys go from year one to year four as a player. And they need the reps and they need to play. They're going to make us better in the long haul."
(on whether at some point those players will need a day off) "Well, I think you have to pay very close attention to it because it's the longest football season they have ever gone through, until they adjust and learn how to do it. It's long enough as it is, but these guys that we're talking about, they've been starters on this football team since the second week of training camp, so they have been in that grind. It didn't just happen here over the last few weeks. We have been asking a great deal of them, but that's the way we have a chance to get better."
(on whether LB DeMeco Ryans is exceeding expectations) "I have such expectations for him (and) such high regard for what he's all about. I would say that I'm not surprised, but I would also say that he has another gear. I think he's going to only get better, and I'm just really looking forward to watching this thing go for him. We also have to be fair. He's playing mike linebacker in his first year in this new defense. We can't ask him to do so much that he can't go out and play and do his job. So we have to be careful there. But I love him as a player. He's a great kid too."
(on whether RB Ron Dayne will start) "Yeah, I want to play them both (Dayne and Samkon Gado). I want to play them right down the middle. We have not been in a situation to do that. We're going to try everything we can this Sunday to do that. (RB) Samkon (Gado) has practiced excellent. I would like to see them both carry the ball 12 to 15 times each, and then be able to evaluate them on a week-to-week basis. Hopefully we're heading in a direction to do that."
(on how RB Wali Lundy fits into the RBs) "He's fine. He's doing fine. I think it's a good opportunity for him to sit back after all the pressure that was put on him early in the season. He practiced better this week, and I don't know if it's just with the load off him a little bit. He's been better for (special teams coordinator) Joe (Marciano) the last two weeks. He's going to be a fine player; he's going to help this team, but I think we may have thrown too much on his plate too early, and I want him to take a step back and understand that."
(on whether G Fred Weary is out of the guard rotation) "No, we're still rotating them, probably not as much as we have (because) Steve
McKinney has played really well the last few weeks. He's back to his old self.
You know he missed most of camp. I think Fred has made Chester (Pitts) and Steve,
both, better players, but we will continue to rotate these guys. Fred deserves
the right to go on the field and help us win."