Skip to main content

Practice Insider - Thursday


Matt Schaub split repetitions with backup quarterback Sage Rosenfels in Thursday's practice.

Going into Thursday's practice, the Houston Texans still had not learned when and where they would play their game against the Chargers. The choices had been narrowed to Houston, Dallas and San Diego, if Qualcomm Stadium could be ready by Monday.

Schaub splits snaps: Quarterback Matt Schaub, who is still listed as day-to-day with hip and lower leg injuries, split snaps with backup Sage Rosenfels.

Schaub surprised head coach Gary Kubiak Wednesday with his mobility, but the starting quarterback was still working through soreness in Thursday's practice.

"He's moving around slowly," Kubiak said. "He's not moving as fast as he needs to be right now in my opinion, but I think he could definitely get there – especially if the game gets moved to Monday, that's an extra day for him.

"He's going to get ready to play for his team, and we're the ones that'll have to see if we think that he's capable of doing it."

Kubiak did think Schaub looked healthy enough to be active for the game.

"The question for me is whether or not I think he's ready to start the game and play the whole game and whether he plays or whether he backs up Sage," Kubiak said. "To me, that's the question, but he'll be ready to function."

Schaub, who has been feeling most of the soreness in his hip, said he that the typical NFL injuries are getting better each day.

"It's obvious each day it feels a lot better and I can move around a little bit better, so it's just an ongoing thing," Schaub said.

"You'll very rarely finish the season 100 percent health-wise. You're going to get banged up, bruised up and it's just a matter of fighting through and being able to get yourself ready to go on Sunday."

Johnson practicing: Wide receiver Andre Johnson, who sprained his left knee in the second week of the season, participated in team drills in Thursday's workout.

The Pro Bowler won't be active against the Chargers and has not determined a return date.

"I'll just take it day by day," Johnson said. "Whenever it feels good, I'll be back on the field playing."

{QUOTE}ESPN's "Bottom Line" news ticker targeted Johnson to return for the Week 9 game against Oakland, which was news to Johnson.

"I don't know where they get it from," Johnson said of the news. "Like I said, my knee's feeling better.

"I talked to the doctor, I think that was Sunday after the game, he said we could just push it harder and harder and just see how the knee reacts to it since I haven't been out on the field in a while. So I went out and pushed it pretty hard today, and I'm pretty sure we'll do the same thing tomorrow and the next day and the next day, and we'll see how it goes."

Scouting LT: Running back LaDainian Tomlinson, the reigning NFL MVP, has returned to his 2006 form, racking up 527 rushing yards and six touchdowns so far this season.

In Week 6, the running back simply abused the Raiders, running for 198 yards and four touchdowns. The Texans are working to make sure the same thing doesn't happen to them this week, but it's not easy to prepare for LT.

"The thing about him, he's going to touch the ball catching it too," Kubiak said. "There's a lot of guys who are great runners, you know that's all they're going to do. This guy's going to catch screens, he's going to be a factor in the pass game, so they find all kind of ways to get him the ball."

Linebacker Danny Clark, who played for the Raiders before his stint with the Saints last season, believes Tomlinson will be the toughest rusher the Texans face this season.

"He's the best back in this business," Clark said. "He has a great combination of speed, vision, toughness and he can catch the ball out of the backfield. So, a guy that has all those capabilities is a guy that we need to keep a close eye on."

The Texans are also planning to keep bodies on LT.

"You've got to tackle him," cornerback Dunta Robinson said. "And you've got to gang tackle him. A lot of the young guys or a lot of the rookies are in the meeting 'ooh'-ing and 'aah'-ing; it just lets you know how spectacular a guy like LT is."

The Texans' run defense struggled in Jacksonville, allowing 244 rushing yards. They improved against the Titans, yielding 155 yards on the ground. This week, the defense wants to get that yardage down to 100.

"As a defense, you definitely want to be able to hold the opposing running back to under a hundred (yards)," safety Von Hutchins said. "That's kind of a line as to where the defense wants to stop, (to) not be able to give up those amounts of yards. Hopefully we'll be able to contain LT and keep him under a hundred this week."

Echemandu in the mix: Running back Adimchinobi Echemandu could see game action soon if he can find a place on special teams. The four-year veteran moved up from the practice squad Wednesday to replace Samkon Gado on the active roster.

"He can play special teams," Kubiak said. "He had a really good practice today. We need to take a look at him."

Kubiak has been most impressed with the running back's work ethic, comparing him to Giants' rusher Reuben Droughns.

"He reminds me of a kid I had for a few years, Reuben Droughns, a little bit like him – big kid, does have some foot quickness, tough," Kubiak said. "We're going to find out more about him as we play him. We've only had him a few weeks, but I just like the way he goes about his business and I think he has a chance to help (special teams coordinator) Joe (Marciano) if he suits up for us."

Injury Report: For the Texans official injury report, please **click here**.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content