Coaches and players of the Houston Texans and New Orleans Saints addressed the media after Saturday's 38-14 win by the Saints at Reliant Stadium. A transcript of their respective interviews follows:
Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak
Houston Texans defensive coordinator Frank Bush
Houston Texans linebacker Xavier Adibi
Houston Texans defensive end Connor Barwin
Houston Texans cornerback Fred Bennett
Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson
Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub
Houston Texans defensive end Mario Williams
Houston Texans free safety Eugene Wilson
Houston Texans tackle Eric Winston
Houston defensive tackle Amobi Okoye
Houston Texans quarterback Dan Orlovsky
Houston Texans running back Steve Slaton
Houston Texans linebacker DeMeco Ryans
New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton
New Orleans Saints cornerback Randall Gay
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Rod Harper
New Orleans Saints running back Mike Bell
New Orleans Saints cornerback Tracy Porter
Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak
(on the game) "Well, where do I start, I'm just disappointed. I thought we were not very physical in the football game at all. They ran the ball extremely well on us. I think I'm just sitting here looking at 6.2 (yards) a clip and I don't think that we ran the ball well at all. But in all three phases, they were more physical than we were as a team. We started fast but after they answered that first drive I thought they were the most physical team throughout the game."
(on if he was surprised to see the starting defensive line being 'pushed around') "Oh yeah. It's a humbling game. You can walk out of stadium one week and feel pretty good about yourself and you can walk out the next week and wonder what the heck is going on. So, that's part of the deal. We definitely got pushed around and we've got to play a lot better than that upfront to have a chance to be successful."
(on Saints RB Mike Bell) "I think he had 10 carries for 100 yards. He passed through here last year and he got hurt I think the first or second practice with us but he did that in Denver too. He's played some really good football and he's been able to stay healthy. He's a fine player and obviously very successful against us tonight."
(on if there were any injuries other than T Cliff Washburn) "No, he's the biggest one. We've got some guys nicked up but Washburn is a concern right now. He's got a calf, I think it's a pull, some type of pull in his calf so that gets us down to some real young players here the rest of the way."
(on how the team will bounce back from a game like this) "We'll see. We'll see how we re-group as a team. We've still got a couple days left of training camp, Monday and Tuesday. We'll still be focused on ourselves and then we'll get into our weekly routine, getting ready for Minnesota. As I just told these guys, they're a very, very physical football team, they run the ball as good as anyone in football so we'll see the answer Monday night. But obviously we're going to have to play a lot better than that."
(on if he thought they'd be pushed around after Thursday's practice) "No, I mean, I'm disappointed. However you want me to answer, the answer is I'm just disappointed that we would go out there and not be able to play the run better. I'm disappointed we're not running the ball better too. I don't want to just sit here and say all my disappointment is on the other side of the ball. I don't think we ran the ball well so we've got a lot of work to do on both sides of the ball."
(on RB Steve Slaton) "Yeah, he made a couple of great runs but just the overall picture of how we ran the ball, I think we're averaging about 2.7 or 2.8 yards a carry, which, I mean, obviously our football team, that's not what we want to be. We don't want to be a 20 throw to 10 run football team, we need to be right down the middle and control the clock and keep people off the field, that's the type of football team we want to be. If we get out of whack like that and start throwing it too much and somebody runs the football on us like that then we're in trouble."
(on QB Dan Orlovsky's performance) "You know, I thought he got better this week. He made a really bad mistake, which I told him, you know, just can't happen right before the half, you're in field goal range and he catches a blitz and you got to throw the ball away or protect it or one or the other, he sure as heck can't turn it over. But I like the way he rebounded, he's a talented young man, as I've told you. He does some very good stuff. We have to get the other stuff out of him and the only way you can get it out is to keep playing. It's like going for it on the fourth down, you know, he'll learn from that but I put him in a tough situation there as a coach, where I think he's good enough to make that play and hopefully we continue to do that and he starts to make those types of plays for this team."
(on Dan Orlovsky's fumble) "Yeah, he knows he's got a blitzer coming off the back side and we're booting that way so he's got to find a way to get ground. We were trying to bring (TE) James Casey out the back side, we had him but it's just game awareness, playing a bunch of football, understanding exactly what a defense's fixing to do to you. I think he'll have a chance to make that play next time, I think he'll understand what was going on."
(on WRs Jacoby Jones and Glenn Martinez) "Yeah, it's been very good between those two guys. (WR Darnell) Jenkins got a little nick so he did not play, came back at the end and returned a kick. Glenn has been very professional in camp and has played very well. Jacoby flashes, continues to flash very good stuff and I also think he had a couple of penalties tonight that hurt us if I'm right but just looking for consistency in his play but obviously he's got the ability to help us win."
(on the first drive by the Texans) "We had a lot of energy and came out and like I said I thought (rb) Steve (Slaton) made a couple of great runs in the drive and (QB) Matt (Schaub) made a couple of great plays. We got ourselves in a hole there with the penalty but we came back and made the play to finish the drive, (WR) David (Anderson) and Matt make a great play there off of a boot scheme so a lot of good stuff going on there but they answered. They're a fine offensive football team, they came right back and answered and kept answering."
Houston Texans defensive coordinator Frank Bush
(on the players being disappointed in the defensive effort and how he felt about the game) "I feel like they feel, a little bit disappointed. We were expecting more when we came out. We were expecting our guys to kind of fly around and do some things differently, and it didn't work out that way. So we'll go back and look at it tomorrow and evaluate it. We've got some time before we get to Minnesota. We faced a good football team tonight, and we don't like the way things turned out on our end."
(on the defense's performance) "We faced a good football team tonight and we don't like the way things turned out. We have to re-evaluate."
Houston Texans LB Xavier Adibi
(on tonight's game performance) "We just have to look into the mirror and realize we didn't play our game, we didn't play Texan defense. We just have to come in Monday and get everything correct.
(on the reason for tonight's defensive performance) "We weren't playing Texan defense, we weren't playing the type of defense we've been playing at camp or the type of defense we had last week against Kansas City. Last week was last week."
Houston Texans DE Connor Barwin
(on his first sack of the preseason) "We I think (DT) Shaun Cody set it up, I ran a stunt with Shaun Cody. He set it up, told me to run the cover, he told me to run inside, so I did that. Shaun Cody really should get half of that sack because he set it up for me."
(on how he felt on third down conversions) "It wasn't good enough, I have to play faster. When I go out there on third down I am fresh and I need to play better."
(on how he felt finally getting to play in front of the home crowd) "It was fun. I like the stadium, obviously I wish we all played better."
(on his overall impressions of the defensive line) "I think we need to be more stout against the run, once they run the play it is hard to attack the pass and attack the quarterback."
Houston Texans CB Fred Bennett
(on what needs to be fixed with the team and his own performance) "Missed tackles, tackles I shouldn't have missed. I just have to go back and watch the film."
(on the first Saints touchdown of the game) "Blown coverage. Small stuff that can be fixed. We just have to be in tune with what's going on. It's preseason so I'm not concerned right now. We're trying to work on some things."
Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson
(on the team's performance) "There were some positive things. We came out the first drive and moved the ball right down the field and scored a touchdown. We just have to look at the positives and negatives and move on."
(on accountability) "You have to be critical of yourself when you look at film."
(on being tackled in an awkward position and having the crowd worried) "I wasn't in any pain; I was just in an awkward position. I'm just out there playing and I don't hear the crowd."
Houston Texans QB Matt Schaub
(on the offense's performance) "Obviously we didn't convert opportunities. We had a couple of turnovers with the second group, but we didn't run the ball the way we wanted to, and didn't take advantage of opportunities down there, in the two minute drill before the end of the half and then down there on the goal line. So it's disappointing. We've got to go and fix those things."
(on the Saints' defensive adjustments to the Texans rushing attack) "I think it was pretty vanilla what they were doing. The looks that we recognize are easy for us to adjust to. Obviously, the o-line things in the run game, that's kind of their world, so I can't really talk too much about that. They weren't doing too many crazy things to us as far as schematically. They were just kind of lining up, and it was us versus them."
(on the disappointment of the team being pushed around a bit) "We didn't come out and run the ball like we should against some of their defenses, and they ran the ball on our defense more than we would want to give up. So it's just things that we've got to go back and we've got to clean up. We've got to just stand up and say that we're not going to let that happen."
(on getting ready for the Monday night game next week against Minnesota) "We've just got to go back to work. We come back in on Monday and we're still in training camp mode, and then we'll start it towards the end of the week getting ready for Minnesota. We just gotta come back and go to work and clean up the things from tonight and just get better as a football team."
(on anybody who impressed him tonight) "When you look at it as a whole, it's hard to pick out one or two guys. You just want to go back and watch the film, and I'll probably have it more clear after tomorrow and Monday, a better answer. There were some young guys who stepped up, but as a whole we need to play a whole lot better, and we didn't tonight."
(on how last week everything went the Texans' way in the rain, but things didn't turn out so well tonight) "We didn't take advantage of our opportunities. They came out and they made the plays. It's something that we need to turn around. We need those to go our way. We need to make the plays. We can't wait for a play to be made by somebody else on our team. We need to have guys who go out there and say, 'I'm going to make the play,' and go and do it."
(on the touchdown drive) "We came out and we had a good plan to start. We were able to execute it, and guys stepped up and made a play. That's what we needed to do. We just needed to play our game, concentrate on us, because it's about us and not them, and just go and play our game."
Houston Texans DE Mario Williams
(on being thankful that this tough a loss was in the preseason) "Yeah, obviously we've still got a lot of improvement to do, so we'll just take it that way and get better."
(on what from the Saints offense gave them trouble today) "It was just little stuff that was very simple runs that they had. We just weren't in the right positions for it."
(on whether it will be a hard thing to fix) "No, that's all on us out there as players. It wasn't anything scheme-wise that was wrong, we were just in the wrong place."
(on his sack that was taken away after video review) "I don't, know man. It is what it is, so I just let it go I guess."
Houston Texans FS Eugene Wilson
(on being the last line of defense) "That goes with the position you know? It's all on your shoulders. You just have to try your best to make that play."
(on helping CBs out with tackling) "Corners, they usually don't like to do too much tackling. I'm not saying our corners. Corners in general."
Houston Texans T Eric Winston
(on what he will take from this game) "We got a lot of work to do. At first I thought we were going get into a good run, we had a lot of production, we weren't running the ball as effectively as we should have after that first drive. We have to own up to it, we have to work at it, good thing is it's only preseason and we just have to learn from it."
(on whether he will sleep well knowing what happen today) "It's a team sport. Just looking at our side of the ball we should have done a lot better, we should have done some things a lot better and we didn't, so that's on us."
(on if anything positive can be taken from tonight's game) "I thought we got all the guys in, we played well, I think up front for the most part it seemed like the protection was pretty good. It's always hard to tell until you go back and look at the film. There were no sacks that I know of, at least early in the game, that's always a positive keeping our quarterback up right. Like I said, we have to be better at making those changes on the run game quicker and making those little tweaks that we need to do to counter what they're doing so we don't lose our possession."
Houston Texans DT Amobi Okoye
(on feeling during a game like tonight's against New Orleans) "I just feel like everybody was out there performing. I think New Orleans was a little bit more physical than us but those things are going to get corrected, definitely going to be corrected."
(on his thoughts about the game) "I see it as a preseason game. Something we're going to go back and evaluate and see what we need to work on. We've got a new defensive coordinator, we've got new coaches and a lot of new things are being tried out there to see what we're going to go with and the kind of defense we're going to be coming up with in this regular season. So I don't think necessarily I'm going to be disturbed about it. I think we're going to correct those things."
Houston Texans QB Dan Orlovsky
(on what happened on the intercepted pass) "Bad play by me. (The) defense shut the play down that was called. I should have just probably thrown it away and moved on to the next play. Bad decision by me, so it's just something that needed to be learned and make sure it's not made again."
(on his fumble) "It's one of those plays that you know it's fourth down so I was trying to get something. Right when I came around the defender was right there and I was just trying to get my arms up above his head and just try to lob the ball because (TE) James (Casey) had a step on his guy. (On) Fourth down I was just trying to make a play. I have to watch it on film and see what I should have done different on the bootleg, probably should have pulled up and just dropped it over his head. It's one of those things you learn from."
(on how he would grade himself in his second preseason game) "I would never grade myself. I wait to watch the film, watch what the coaches watch and see what they say. Bottom line is that I didn't do enough to get a win tonight and that's most important. I will go to sleep thinking that, but I will come in tomorrow, watch the film and see what was done well and see what was done poorly and get back to work."
(on playing great under bad weather conditions in Kansas City but playing bad in good weather at home) "That's the nature of football and the nature of being human. Sometimes you are on and sometimes you are off. We'll go back and watch the film as a team and see what we did well and see what we did poorly. We have to correct mistakes."
Houston Texans RB Steve Slaton
(on how they started the game) "I think we came out pretty well. We just have to eliminate the penalties. I think that is what was hurting us at the beginning, slowing down drives."
(on being able to get in a rhythm in second preseason game) "I think last week it was kind of slow. I wanted to just come out and get ready for the season."
(on how things went downhill) "Like (head) Coach (Gary Kubiak) said we made mistakes in all three phases: offense, defense, and special teams. I think we are going to have some time to work on those things and that's what we are going to work on next week."
(on how everything seemed to go right last week compared to this week) "Everything is not going to go the way you planned but that's what it (preseason) is for. Get the mistakes out early and improve."
Houston Texans LB DeMeco Ryans
(on defense giving up a lot of yards on the ground) "I'm not excited about that. The run game is something that we focused on going into this game knowing that we had to stop the run on defense and have to run the ball on offense. But none of those things happened for us. They did a good job of that, but we didn't execute. We let the ball cut back one too many times and get outside. Everybody of course wasn't in their gaps and we weren't playing sound defense. When you don't play sound, when you hop out of a gap or not perform the technique the right way that's what happens, you get gashed."
(On being further along than their performance) "I know we are a lot further along. When it comes to game time you have to just do what we are suppose to do and not try to do anything different. Don't try to go out of your way to do too much. Everybody just has to do their part and stop the play. Everybody has to do their part and line up right and do their assignment. You play good sound defense like that."
(On how disappointing this loss is) "It's disappointing but it's still preseason. It's good that it happened to us now instead of it happening to us first week of our regular season. It's good that this happened to us now so we have a lot of time to go and get this fixed. So that's what the preseason is for."
(on the differences between playing in bad conditions in KC and good conditions tonight) "You would love to come out, our first time this year playing at home, you would love to give the fans a better game than we did today. Once again, we have time. It's the preseason. We have time to get it fixed."
(on all the rushing yards given up) "It's just assignments and tackling. We have to do a better job being more aggressive and stepping up and creating a new line of scrimmage and coming downhill as linebackers and making tackles."
(on if tonight's performance is something to worry about) "No. It's just something to go back and work on this week, something to focus on next week is stopping the run. We know that will be our focus. I don't see it as a big major concern like, 'Oh, we're in this big huge problem.' Once we watch the film, we'll get a chance to see what went wrong for us and that's the good thing about this, being able to go back and look at yourself and be able to go back and correct the mistakes that we made."
(on a running team, Minnesota, coming into town next week) "Right, so it's even more reason to go out and work on the run game and find a way to fix it before we play next Monday."
(on the first unit's performance) "I don't think we performed as well as we should have. They ran the ball way too much on us. That's not the identity, not what Texans defense is set out to be. We set out to be a physical bunch and stop the run but we didn't do that tonight. So we have to go back and find a way to correct that."
New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton
(On injury notes) "(T) Jammal Brown had the procedure done earlier this week on his abdomen with Dr. Myers. That went well so we're going to bring him back. He still has some hip discomfort, we'll have to see where he's at with that. Obviously we didn't play him here tonight, but the time frame for him is three to four weeks. That's what most of those sports hernias require. As far as tonight's game (QB) Joey Harrington had a mild concussion, (DE) Jeff Charleston dislocated his thumb but was able to go back in. (S) Darren Sharper had a bruised tibia but he's going to be fine. Everything else was good, so from an injury standpoint those are the notes. I just told the players that I thought there were some encouraging things in this game. I thought we ran the ball better than we had to date, I was pleased with that. Still too many penalties, still a number of things we need to work on and clean up. Fortunately we still have a lot of time to do that. We'll have a chance to get back to New Orleans late tonight. The players will be off tomorrow, the coaches will evaluate the tapes. Monday the players will be in and have a chance to watch this film."
(on RB Michael Bell showing him something he didn't know he had) "He did a good job. He ran hard and I thought we did a good job up front. He had a good training camp, so I guess to answer your question it wasn't surprising because he's been playing well. If you have really been following us in the spring and training camps he's been doing a really good job; so I was encouraged to see him play well."
(on liking what he saw from his defense) "Yeah I thought we tackled well. Early on there was some leaky yardage but when you look at the numbers…I thought when we got off the field, we got a couple tough calls early in the half but we were able to come back and overcome those. It thought we were physical and I'm anxious to look at the tape. I thought the guys who tackled did well. We had a few forced turnovers which were important and that was encouraging."
(on T Jermon Bushrod) "You know. I thought he had a tough match up with (Texans DE) Mario (Williams) and we'll take a look at the tape. I thought he played well just from the sideline and end zone pictures he seemed to be doing pretty well. It was good to give him that experience."
(on emphasizing how he liked what he saw from his team tonight) "It's just having the confidence in some of these guys. A lot of people may not know some of the names and faces, but you go with what you see and the evaluation and the best man will get the position."
(on overall how he felt about the team's performance) "You know we had a good week here. We got a lot accomplished. You know we had two good practice days against Houston. They did a great job in hosting us. The relationship we've had now for a couple of years has been real positive for both clubs I think. I thought there were a number of things that were pleasing about the game, and yet there are some things we'll need to look at and correct. Overall it's good to win some of the players see some of the guys they haven't seen a lot of in game situations. First it's about the evaluation."
(on T Jermon's (Bushord) having the same injury that (DE) Will Smith had last year) "Well (LB Jonathan) Vilma had the same procedure three weeks before training camp. It helps the player when the player understands the significance of having it done; when you talk to a guy like Will Smith who played through it a year ago. It's just hard to play with it."
(on his return) "No it's just what I said. Three to four weeks right now, we'll see."
(on RB Reggie Bush) "Just a sprained calf, fairly mild. He would have been able to play tonight but we held him out."
(on Bush returning next week) "The plan is to, yeah."
(on WRs) "A lot of these guys are competing for a position and that's a good thing. We still got two more games, a lot of practice to still watch these guys and following and paying close attention to the reps. Those are some tough decisions that are coming up."
(on the depth of the guys in the back field) "There are different types of runners. (RB) Michael (Bell) is more of a slasher type runner a little bit upright. I think (RB) Pierre (Thomas) is a little bit different from him, and certainly (RB) Reggie (Bush) is different. We try to match their skill sets on things they do well, tonight we wanted to give Mike a little bit of the running game. I think the guys up front blocked them pretty well. That was encouraging."
(on LB Anthony Waters replacing a veteran) "We'll see, we'll have to look at the tape and take some of that into a count when we watch."
New Orleans Saints CB Randall Gay
(on if there was more motivation for this game based on the fighting during practice) "No, every time we step on the field we want to win. There was no more motivation because we had a little scuffle during practice. We scuffle against each other everyday during practice. It's just football, it's going to be rough and it's going to be competitive. Sometimes tempers flair, but once you get out here on game day you got to control all of those emotions and put it all together and play some good football."
(on winning the turnover battle being the key to the two preseason wins) "That's what football is all about. We just want to get the opportunity to give the offense the ball, and they are doing something with it by making plays and scoring points. We did that the last two games and we came out on top. That should be the key for us for the whole season."
New Orleans Saints WR Rod Harper
(on how his 79 yard TD punt return would help his chances) "Really all I want to do is go out and make plays and not worry about if I'm going to make the team or where I am on the depth chart. I just have to calm down and enjoy myself."
(on what transpired during his 79 yard TD punt return) "It really opened up by really good blocking. I was just focusing on catching the ball. I was able to slip off a couple of tackles and bounce outside. I looked back and saw a lot of field and it was a foot race from there."
New Orleans Saints RB Mike Bell
(on his performance tonight) "I think from a personal standpoint it just reminds me that I could still play running back. I was playing full back the majority of my second year and last year I didn't get in until the last couple of games."
(on his chances in the Saints RB battle this year) "I think it's good and the competition is getting better on a daily basis."
(on different styles between each Saints RB) "I think we bring all different styles to the table. I think we all complement each other in one way and another. I think that if we all get better each day and continue to push each other then we could all get better as a unit."
New Orleans Saints CB Tracy Porter
(on winning despite being preseason) "We still have a lot of work to do but, it is in fact a win for us. We are looking at all the positive guys flying around on defense, game tackling and the offense lighting up the scoreboard. At the end of the day we know we have a lot to work on."
(on aggressiveness of defense) "Absolutely, you can't take anything away from that. Guys are being more aggressive and covering better. We're sending guys in to put pressure on the quarterback and it's paying off for us."
(on depth at defensive back) "We have a large depth at the defensive back position and it's giving the older guys the opportunity to rest their legs, while at the same time giving the younger guys the experience that we need."