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Houston Texans

Notes and Quotes: From RBs to mac and cheese

Let me just say this, let me start off by saying Matt Judon is completely wrong. Mac and cheese is a staple and is one of the all-time Thanksgiving dishes, especially with the crumble on top. We got to have that. Justin Reid

The Houston Texans return home for a three-game home stretch after their first road win of 2021, beating the Titans 22-13 in a torrential downpour. Sunday will mark Tyrod Taylor's second start at home, where he last played in the season opener against Jacksonville. Houston will face the New York Jets and QB Zach Wilson in his first game back from a knee injury.

Here are the top stories and quotes from the week.

On Tuesday, the Texans released RB Phillip Lindsay.

"When we look at our roster, and you do what you think is best for our team, and we are top-heavy there with guys," Head Coach David Culley said. "We got Scottie (Phillips) coming back at some point. We just felt it was best for us and for Phillip (Lindsay) to make that move."

Phillips will be eligible to be designated for return after the Week 13 game against Indianapolis. In the meantime, RB Royce Freeman could also see action. Freeman was claimed off waivers after seeing action in eight games for the Carolina Panthers.

"He's got good vision, he's got good patience, he runs hard," Offensive Coordinator Tim Kelly said. "Obviously, we haven't seen him here in a lot of situations, but going against our defense, he's done a good job giving them looks. He's been smart, and he's diligent in how he prepares and the amount of time he's spent learning the offense. I've been very impressed with him so far."

Justin Britt could soon return off IR. The Texans starting center has missed the requisite three games and was seen at practice on Friday.

Houston also signed DL Derek Rivers to the active roster from the practice squad this week. Rivers, now in his fifth season, played in his first game as a Texan in Week 11 at Tennessee. He was elevated off the practice squad and recorded two tackles.

The Texans practiced from Wednesday to Friday, including on Thanksgiving Day. Thursday's practice was just shifted to earlier in the day so that players and coaching staff could enjoy the day with families.

Taylor discussed what he's seen from Jets defensive front consisting of Quinnen Williams, CJ Mosely and John Franklin-Meyers on film.

"They do a great job of rushing the passer, stout against the run as well, too," Taylor said. "(They're) very strong upfront. We're definitely going to have to execute our game plan upfront in pass blocking as well as creating lanes for our backs to have some space to run."

Desmond King ll, who picked up his first two interceptions as a Texan last week, is getting adjusted to playing outside corner where he hasn’t played since college.

"Des King has a good big picture outlook on defense," Lovie Smith said. "He knows football, tendencies and all that, but he's a smart football player. If you go back to his days in college, he had almost 10 interceptions in a season, so he understands that concept a little bit. One of the harder positions, of course, is to play inside. You have to do an awful lot. But some of the same skills that you look at there in a player, you see on the outside."

Rookie Brevin Jordan continues to earn more playing time each week after being inactive for the first seven games and now starting two of the last three games.

"He's put together a few good weeks of practice," Kelly said. "He shows the ability to separate, shows the ability to get open. It showed up a couple times on third downs, caught one of them, probably had two of them that he should've come down with, probably. I think he'd tell you the same thing. The other thing that's been encouraging is that he's not afraid to stick his face in there and to go block and to try and be physical."

Lovie Smith's defense has recorded 13 interceptions this season, including four last week against Ryan Tannehill, and is tied for fourth in the NFL. This week, the defense will face Zach Wilson, the third rookie quarterback this season, after Trevor Lawrence in Week 1 and Mac Jones in Week 5.

"He's a talented kid," Justin Reid said. "Guy can make all the throws on the field. He does have a little more experience under his belt than he did earlier in the year. That should play in his favor a bit, but he's still a first-year guy coming off a knee injury. He hasn't played in a while. I do think there will be some opportunities there. I think it will be critical if we get a jump start on the game, force him into passing situations early. I think that's going to play a lot into our favor as a defense to create turnovers."

As for the great mac-and-cheese debate that began with Patriots LB Matthew Judon, Reid wasn't the only player who vehemently disagreed with the take.

"It has to be baked mac and cheese," WR Brandin Cooks said. "Have to get a little of the crust on top, but definitely a mac and cheese fan."

"Judon is crazy," OL Tytus Howard said. "I don't even know where he's from."

And how's this for a plot twist of an update?

Remember the little boy who went viral for drinking rainwater at the Texans-Titans game? It turns out that he and his family traveled to Nashville and are Texans Season Ticket Members!

The Texan will host the Jets on Sunday at NRG Stadium. Kickoff is set for noon CT on CBS and SportsRadio 610. Click here for tickets.

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