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Kubiak pleased with O-line, Rams win


The day after his team's 16-13 victory over the Rams, Texans head coach Gary Kubiak answered questions from the media at a Monday press conference.

Brown, Cushing status: Kubiak began the Monday press conference by commenting on the status of left tackle Duane Brown and linebacker Brian Cushing. Brown left Sunday's game against the Rams with a left knee injury, while Cushing played through a knee injury and bruised ribs. Brown was checked out again this morning.

"They did an MRI, and we don't see anything more than we saw the first time," Kubiak said of the second-year lineman. "Obviously, he's got an issue that's causing him not to be at his best. (It's) something that hopefully he can play through."

Kubiak went on to say that Brown's knee problem wasn't a new injury.

As for Cushing, the rookie linebacker continues to play through a knee injury he suffered in training camp, but he also acquired a new malady on Sunday against the Rams.

"He got a pretty good shot to the ribs," Kubiak said. "X-rays were all okay, so it's really just day-to-day with him. He's just beat up. He's been pretty reliable as far as us counting on him and probably this week will be tougher than any, but if he can go, he'll definitely be there."

Pass protection: Rashad Butler entered the game for Brown and will again be charged with protecting quarterback Matt Schaub's blind side if Brown cannot play on Sunday.

{QUOTE}"He played very well," Kubiak said. "He hasn't played a lot of football, and you have an opportunity to go in there and pass protect a great deal and it really gave us a lot of confidence that if Duane's not able to go, that as we move into this game this week with all these great pass rushers that he's fixing to play against, that's very encouraging."

Also encouraging is the team's overall pass-protection of late. Since giving up a sack on the first play of the game in Jacksonville two weeks ago, the Texans' offensive line hasn't allowed one since.

"We've protected him pretty good all year," Kubiak said. "You've got to give Chris (Brown) a lot of credit in the pass protection on the job he does from a back standpoint, but I just think Matt's playing really well right now. He's in a groove, he's seeing the field, the ball is gone. We're doing a lot of quick stuff. He moved around really good yesterday. I think it's a lot of credit to how he's playing. Obviously we're helping him up front but I think our quarterback's probably playing as good as he's ever played."

Foster thoughts: On Monday, Kubiak was still displeased with rookie running back Arian Foster's fumble in the first quarter against the Rams. Foster didn't take the field for another snap on offense, but he did contribute on special teams. On Monday, Kubiak said that Foster's not through carrying the ball this season despite his gaffe against St. Louis.

"I was disappointed because I had really big plans for him as far as getting on the field and doing a lot yesterday," Kubiak said. "It did not stem from one play. It stemmed from some practice and a play. He's a young player, but he'll go right back to his duties this week. He's very talented. He can help us win this weekend, but he has to have a good week and be ready to do his job."

Shanahan talk: With rumors that former Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan will soon be hired by the Redskins, Kubiak was asked about the possibility of offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan leaving Houston to coach with his father. He doesn't think it'll be a distraction for the Texans.

"I think we all know that's part of football," Kubiak said. "As far as Kyle--any coach I have--I want what's best for them in their coaching career. But I think we've all known all along that if Mike gets back in the business here in the next year, which it looks like he will, that his son coaching for him someday is very important to him. I've known that, and that's fine."

Kubiak went on to say that Kyle has done a "great" job as coordinator, but that the two haven't discussed the possibility of a move to the Redskins.

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