Notes from the Texans' practice and locker room on Thursday at Reliant Stadium:
Surgery scheduledOutside linebacker Mario Williams will undergo an operation Friday for the pectoral muscle injury he suffered against the Raiders. For more on that story, click here.
Mason's history with Houston
It was the first day of practice as a Texan for wide receiver Derrick Mason, and the veteran said it was a "good" one, and that he's picking up the offense "pretty well". It's his second stint as a professional football player in the city of Houston, because he was drafted in the fourth round of the 1997 draft by the Tennesse Oilers.
"My first year here, we were here for two weeks when I got here, so I had training camp here," Mason said of his rookie season. "I had the old Oiler helmet, I had number 82 when I came into the league, so I kind of came full-circle."
Mason is the only player remaining in the league who played for the Oilers, who changed their name to the Titans in 1999.
"Am I? That's a good thing. That shows you that I've been truly blessed to play this game for a long period of time," Mason said, upon learning that he's the last Oiler.
Quarterback Matt Schaub was back at practice Thursday, but was limited. Backup Matt Leinart got more repetitions than normal, due to Schaub's limitations. Nonetheless, head coach Gary Kubiak was happy to see Schaub back under center.
"He took probably a little bit less than his normal Thursday because we got Leinart some reps too, but he looked good," Kubiak said. "In fact, he's going to be okay."
Timing issuesWithout Williams on the field, rookie Brooks Reed moves up on the depth chart into the starting spot at weakside outside linebacker. According to defensive end Antonio Smith, there will be a slight adjustment when rushing the passer.
"We got to feed off of each other," Smith said. "We can't rush in each other's way or I go wide and he's coming tight. We have to be able to gel together and he needs to know how I rush and I need to know how he rush."
Reed concurred with Smith.
"It's very important that me and Antonio are on the same page," Reed said. "We got to know when each other are stunting. We got to know what's going on with the blitz. We can't be stunting in when there's a blitz. We all got to be on the same page."
Quotable"No, no, no, no. My children won't let me play 20 years. I've got to get back to them and enjoy them." – WR Derrick Mason, on if he's going to play in the NFL for 20 years.
"Yeah, we played in some celebrity basketball games together. He can hoop a little bit." – WR Jacoby Jones, on if he knew Mason before the veteran was traded to the Texans.