Visit HoustonTexans.com Monday at 3:30 p.m. CT to watch the live streaming video of coach Gary Kubiak's weekly press conference.
After the Texans beat the Rams 16-13 on Sunday in Saint Louis, the coaches and players from both sides answered questions from the media. The following is a transcript of their respective interviews.
Texans head coach Gary Kubiak Texans WR Andre Johnson Texans SSBernard Pollard Texans CB Dunta Robinson Texans QB Matt Schaub Texans DE Mario Williams
Texans head coach Gary Kubiak(on if it was an ugly win) "It is hard to win in this league, obviously there weren't many style points for us today but it wasn't for a lack of effort. We were just sloppy in our play and turned the ball over and jumping offsides on defense, you just can't do that against anybody. We found a way to regroup and the defense led the way in the second half. (QB) Matt Schaub and WR Andre Johnson were exceptional, so you have to feel good about winning. We have more corrections to make, but a win is a win."
(on giving RB Arian Foster another chance) "He practiced that way on Thursday. I know I am being hard on him here and that he is a young player, but you play the way you practice. On Thursday in practice he put the ball down on the ground and in the game and did the same thing. He is going to protect the ball or he is not going to play. I am disappointed in the way he came out in the game, and the other two guys deserved a chance."
(on more thoughts on the on game) "It was very difficult. I am excited about winning. I am excited that our team could find away to dig down deep in a game like that one and win the game. Obviously, I would have liked to see us play a lot cleaner as a team, but winning in this league is tough so you have to enjoy winning."
(on if there was a lack of effort) "We took the opening kickoff and went right down the field and fumbled on the 10-yard line. There was no lack of effort. There is some good stuff going on. You have to hang on to the football. Defensively, we were playing well. We jumped offsides three times and made drives come alive three times in the first half. Concentration may be a better word to use, but there are some good things going on. We had 400-and-something yards in offense and held them 200-something; that is good ball in this league. It is those little things keeping us from winning that game like the one last week."
(on why the Texans couldn't run the ball) "It's the same problem we've had all year. It's a combination. Up front we've got to continue to be better, and as backs we're searching for somebody to kind of take over and become a go-to guy for us. That hasn't happened and it's been a struggle. It's not like it was (just) today. My answer wouldn't be any different. We can throw it pretty good and we did that today exceptionally."
(on WR Andre Johnson's play) "He is amazing. He had nine catches for 196 yards and they were playing a lot of two-deep-man-under. To his credit, we moved him around a lot today. We put him in the backfield, we did a lot of things with him; that is why he is still able to be very effective. He is as good a football player as I have ever been around. I think I have said that many times."
(on the status of LT Duane Brown) "I don't know right now. (T Rashad) Butler came in and played the second half and did a very good job for a kid who hasn't played a lot of football. Duane's got that knee he's been dealing with now for about three weeks, so we'll just keep our fingers crossed that we can rest him this week and still get something out of him next week. But I don't know."
(on what the injury was today to Brown) "It's just the same thing. He's having a hard time pushing off of it. It's not going to change. It's going to be that way until the season is over.
(on struggles in the red zone) "We've been a pretty decent red zone team this year. I think we're in the Top 10. Today we were 0-for-2 the first two times down there, kicking field goals. To me that stems from not running the ball and we dropped a touchdown pass too. We had two big drops in the first half. (TE) Joel (Dreessen) had one over the middle and one in the end zone. You add those things to the turnovers and all the other stuff going on and all of a sudden, you've got a bad half of football."
(on if he thought about pulling Dreessen out) "We thought about giving (TE) James (Casey) a chance at zebra (receiver position), but Joel plays hard and we came right back to him and he made a couple of real big plays in the second drive of the first half and I'm very proud of the way he bounced back. That's what you have to do as a player. If you make a mistake, you have to come back and bounce back."
(on if he sensed the Texans would be flat) "I can't say that I saw that coming. We were ready to play. We had a good week. Statistically, the things that were going on on both sides of the ball say good things. But it's just the mistakes. You take seven or eight mistakes in an NFL football game, that's what got these statistics back even, is our mistakes."
(on what he said at halftime) "They did enough talking on their own. I didn't have to say a lot. They were disappointed in themselves, the mistakes that they had made, and they called for more emotion out of their teammates and I think they got it."
Texans WR Andre Johnson
(on the Houston victory) "It was ugly. I think the atmosphere of the stadium was kind of dead. Normally, when you play road games, the other team's fans are energetic and their fans really weren't at the beginning and I think that killed our energy. When we came out in the first half, we were real flat. You try to say things to guys to get them going. Even when we made plays, no one seemed to be real excited about it like we normally do. At halftime we realized the situation we were in and we came out and played better in the second half."
(on the victory) "It's big. Any time you win a game, that's big. We have two games left now, and every time you win a game it gets bigger and bigger. So, we can enjoy this tonight and move onto Miami tomorrow."
(on working with QB Matt Schaub) "Since day one, since Matt got here we've been on the same page. When we're out on the field we talk a lot. He tells me why he didn't throw me the ball. We see the same things. Even if he didn't throw it to me and I tell him, 'Hey, the safety was on me' and things like that, we both see the same things. When the play's there to be made, he comes to me, and I just do my best to make them."
Texans SS Bernard Pollard(on a confrontation with RB Steven Jackson) "It's part of the game and the biggest thing with our defense, despite what ever happens, we're going to fight hard. We're going to continue to fight until the end of the season. We're not going to let anybody push us over. Every individual that steps up there on defense knows and understands what our priority is, and that's to stop them. He (Steven Jackson) gets paid a lot of money, and he made a lot of plays today. The game caused that ruckus and I have to learn how to control a little better. At the end of the day, we're not going to let anyone push us around."
(on whether a fight was imminent or just happened) "I don't know if you could see it coming. We're going to continue to play hard, but when it happens, me, nor any of the other ten guys are going to let you sit there and try to push us around. If we have to go to the ground, we won't throw any punches because we understand what's at stake. Like I said, we're not going to let anyone push us around."
(on his contributions to a tough defense) "There's 11 guys, and we're going to continue to scrap and continue to fight. I think that's our identity right now, and whoever we play, we're going to hit you hard and play defense."
Texans CB Dunta Robinson
(on what the team talked about during halftime) "There were a lot of mouths. Everybody was talking. We knew that what was going on was uncharacteristic of the Texans. Everybody knew we had to step up, come out, and play better in the second half. There was no panic in us. It was the same situation we had in Buffalo where we knew it was a team we should have been beaten and we went in halftime down. It was the same situation, we just knew we had to come out and play better."
(on playing against WR Donnie Avery) "He's probably one of the fastest receivers I've ever faced in my career. He's going to be a great pro one day. We just mixed our coverages up: Bail on him sometimes, stand in his face sometimes, just give him a lot of different looks; play off sometimes, press sometimes and just do a lot of different things to try and confuse him so he won't know what coverage we're in."
Texans QB Matt Schaub(on the Houston victory) "I'm excited. A 'W' is a 'W' in this league. Any team can beat anyone in this league on any given day if you don't execute and you don't play good football. Despite records, that's a good football team we played, especially the defense side of the ball, the way they schemed things and the way they played. But we were able to get some big plays down field and we were able to execute at the end."
(on the Houston offense) "As a, quarterback I wouldn't mind throwing it every play, but you've got to run the ball. We made some plays in the run game. There were some we got stuffed on first down, but you still have to keep the defense honest with it. You can't just sit back and play soft zone and take things down the field away. We were able to execute it to some extent tonight, but it's something we need to get better at."
(on the team's overall execution and emotion) "This week, it's just the way things go sometimes. You go on the road and it takes you a while to get going. We didn't find our rhythm necessarily in the red zone, scoring touchdowns."
(on Houston's ability to rally at halftime) "The coaches can only do so much. And it's when you take the next step as a team when the leaders on the team and the players hold each other accountable and keep each other honest and tell it how it is. When players step up and do that, that's when your team takes the next step."
Texans DE Mario Williams(on the atmosphere of the game) "It definitely was weird. It was really mellow. Obviously, their fans weren't too excited, but we were out there and we just weren't playing our kind of ball. We really lacked intensity and we really needed to pick that up."
(on needing the win) "We definitely needed the win, and no matter how we got it, the fact that we got it is what matters."
Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo Rams WR Danny Amendola Rams RB Steven Jackson Rams DE Chris Long Rams QB Keith Null
Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo(opening Remarks) "Injury wise, (CB) Quincy Butler had a knee. He might have been able to go back in had we had another injury, but we'll find out about it tomorrow. (TE) Danny Fells never came back, they are calling it a hyper extended knee. I think both of them had similar injuries. Tough one. Tough, tough, tough. The guys battled it's a three-point game. Doesn't matter, they had one more point than we did and we end up with a loss. Very disappointed, but very, very proud. After everything we went through this week and being a little short-handed with injuries and what not, the guys were out there battling. I just asked them to play each play for each other and I thought they did that today. We fell a little bit short, so I'm disappointed in that way. I've stood up here before and had some games where we had a lot of penalties and it's hurt us. But I'm proud of, we only had three penalties today, so I thought that was good. I thought Keith, you know, it's a growth process and I'm sure there's things in there he'd want back and we've got to do better. He battled, he had good command. He did some good things. At the end, I want to say it 2:36, the decision to punt was based on the fact that it was a three-point game, it was fourth-and-10, I believe. At that point we just needed a field goal to tie it and get it to over-time and punt it down in there, which we did and it's just a matter of…we had enough timeouts, two timeouts, and a two-minute warning. We were going to be able to get the ball back at decent field goal position and work our way for a field goal and I had a lot confidence in the offense to do that, so that's why I went with that. I am proud of them, but we did lose and that's disappointing. So we'll get back to work tomorrow. I'll open it up."
(on if it was tough this morning to make a decision on who could play based on illnesses) "Lucky, we did not. The one thing we anticipated was possibly if somebody come in this morning with a sickness. We would have had to do some shuffling, but that didn't happen. Guys bounced back that were ill. I'd have to ask them how they feel now because you put in 60 minutes of a game, I'm sure they're pretty weak. But guys fought through it."
(on RB Steven Jackson's tenacious play today) "He always gives us that. I'm always proud of him. He's like that and I think he instills it in everybody else. He's fiery and you have to love that in this league. And he gives it to us all the time. He's never changed that way and I hope he never does."
(on if he saw what happened on Jackson's personal foul penalty) "I didn't. I didn't catch it until the end. It was what it was."
(on if he saw progress in Null's play) "I think so. Now without studying it, I know he had some nice throws in there and stands up there big in the pocket and can throw the football, so I think so."
(on if CB Jonathan Wade's inactive status was because he was sick) "No, it was just a deactivation decision and Jonathan's got to fight through it. We talked. We'll see where we are next week."
(on through all the changes, the offensive line still playing well) "That's a credit to the coaches, to those guys that go in there. The O-line on all these teams or any football team is a unique group. Special, in a good way. No matter what, they're always fighting for each other and for the guy behind them running the football. Im going to guess that they did that again today."
(on if the offensive line will be one area that he feels good about after the season) "I'm hopeful. Like anything, we assess the whole deal after we get done with this. It'll still be about Arizona now, but very hopeful on that."
(on if it is better to lose these games so they will get a better Draft pick) "That's not in my vocabulary."
(on DE Leonard Little status) "He's got a, I may not get the whole medical thing right, but the infection was such that they go in, they clean it out, but they have to leave it open. And I believe they put the packing in there, we can check with (head trainer) Jim (Anderson) on that, but he couldn't play with an open wound. Hopefully that will heal up and he'll be ok for this week."
(on Jackson becoming the Rams all-time rushing attempt leader today) "Terrific. I'm proud and I'm hopeful for him. I hope he keeps having those kind of things happen."
(on QB Kyle Boller's status and if they looked at him at all in warm-ups) "Well, we did and made him the second quarterback. He assured me that if something happened to Keith that he'd be able to go in there and give us something. He didn't have all his energy or strength back. He was weak from the illness and was fighting the thigh thing. While I'm thinking of it, I want to mention that both Kyle Boller and (QB) Marc Bulger, we're talking a lot about Keith now because he'd the starting quarterback, those guys have been terrific with the young guy. Those are some of things you don't see all the time. There were moments during this week where they…talk about pros and helping a younger guy. And I know Keith appreciates it."
(on if Null is the starting quarterback for the rest of the season) "I'm not going to say that."
(on what he thinks about how the defense defended Texans WR Andre Johnson) "Well, I don't have all the stats in front of me, not that I'm a stat guy, but I know he made some plays. He's tough to defend. I thought they did some good things. Early in the game they put him in the backfield and finding ways to…because one of the focuses was to take him out of the game. Now they found ways to do it. They did it by putting him in the backfield, they ran boot plays, which changes some things, they put him inside, they did a lot of different things and to (Texans Head Coach) Gary's (Kubiak)credit they found ways to get him open. But he's a tough guy to defend. He's an elite wide receiver in the league."
(on if it was frustrating for the Texans to have success with the run game in their last drive) "Yeah and you kind of make that decision based on what had happened during the game. You feel comfortable with the run defense. You knew they had to run it; they forced us to use our timeouts. That first play. I'm sure there's a fit of something there that didn't quite go right and then he popped it out."
(on if he is especially proud of the team this week given the adversity they experience this week) "I'm definitely proud. But I've been proud with them in every game. I love this group. Where disappoints comes is that they don't get to share in the reward. With all the work and all the adversity that they've overcome because the reward is winning and that's the only reward."
Rams WR Danny Amendola(on the game) "By no means satisfied. The No. 1 goal every week is to get a win. All we can do is to go into next week and prepare the best we can to get a win."
(on his long kick return) "We had a return set up to break it to the outside. We had been hitting a lot of returns inside and we wanted to break one outside to see what we could get and it worked and it set our offense up for good field position."
(on playing well, but still not getting the win) "We kept fighting. That was the big deal. We never gave up. It's frustrating that we can't get a win like we want to and like we prepare for each week. All we can do is go into next week and prepare for a win."
Rams RB Steven Jackson(on how it feels to be the Rams all-time rushing attempts leader) "I didn't even know. It feels good. I guess it is showing that I am durable enough to take those kind of carries, but like always when we accomplish those things we want to do it with a win, so it kind of takes away from those accomplishments."
(on what he takes out of today's close 16-13 loss) "As a team, we have to learn how to put these close ones away. As an offense, when you are in the position to put the game away, you want to be able to run the clock down, get to the red zone, possible put up seven (points) or come out with at least a field goal. We have some growing in that area, but for us to come out and fight like this there is something to look at and take away from it."
(on how his back is feeling) "From what the doctors told me when I first injured my back, is that it is not going to completely heal until after the season. It is getting to the point where I can manage being able to take a few carries in practice. I really want to do that for me and (QB) Keith Null so we can get on the same page with the footwork. We are getting a feel for one another and it's not so much as the back is getting better, it's just a matter of just wanting to get that chemistry with Null and make things as smooth as possible."
(on S Bernard Pollard) "It's just a little physical football. It looks like I got the worse end of it. It was just two guys competing out there.
Rams DE Chris Long(on having Thursday off due to players having the flu) "For some guys, it was much needed rest. It was the right thing to do, you can't let that stuff get on you. Some guys I think did take advantage of the rest and we came out fresh today, we just could have executed a little better."
(on taking the run away from Houston) "I think that we could have defended the run a little better for as much as they tried to do it. They came out and I think they wanted to throw the football. That's their strength. That doesn't take away from those backs that they have or the offensive line. They did a good job when they had to. Matt (Schaub) made a lot of plays with his feet too, stepping up and moving around the pocket and being elusive and have good pocket presence and getting the ball to that playmaker, No. 80."
(on performing on a week where they missed practice) "I know some guys went through some adversity. Hats off to them for coming out and battling whatever it was they were battling. For guys like me, I wasn't sick. I got a day off my feet. We did what we were supposed to do. We came out here and played hard. That's our job, but we have to win too. We have to stick together. Nobody is going to pack it in. That is not what this team is about. Over the next two weeks, we have to stick together and try to win a ballgame or two."
Rams QB Keith Null(on the game vs. last week's game) "It was a lot different. It seemed like things slowed down a little bit for me a lot more than it did last week. It was a great opportunity to get out there and play again."
(on RB Steven Jackson) "He plays unbelievable every week. The guy works his tail off, even when he is hurt. He is coming out here playing for us and he is doing a great job. Going out there and having him behind you and protect you makes you feel a lot more comfortable."
(on his play) "I feel like I did a pretty good job. There were definitely some plays I wanted back. Especially the pick, that just wasn't a smart play by me but I felt like I improved a lot from last week. I was just trying to do too much to make a play, I scrambled out and I just should have just thrown it out of bounds."
(on making significant progress) "Yes, I do feel like I have gotten a lot better compared to last game. I think I still need to get a lot better and still need to keep working to improve my game."