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Practice quotes: Friday


The Texans worked out for the last time before heading to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers. Head coach Gary Kubiak talked to the media about the health of the team after Friday's practice.

Head coach Gary Kubiak

(on if the team is 100 percent healthy) "Yeah we are. The biggest question we had going into the week was would Ephraim (Salaam) make enough progress to be our swing tackle on Sunday, and as of walking off this field right now, he's done that. So, expect him to be the swing tackle."

(on if RB Ahman Green will be limited in the game) "Well, we're going to rotate them. Basically, Ahman (Green), (Steve) Slaton and Chris (Taylor) are all going to play. We're going to keep them fresh on the field. I have confidence in all three of them. I think the two young kids have looked as good as they've looked all camp this week. So, that's encouraging. We're not going to go crazy with Ahman in this game and set him back. I'm hoping he comes out of this game maybe somewhere between 12 and 15 good carries. We go too far, it's going to be a mistake. But he's had two good weeks, a full-practice player. He's looked good this week, so I'm excited to see him get going."

{QUOTE}(on if conditioning is an issue in the first game because they haven't played four quarters) "I feel good about our conditioning. What you see going around the league is every team, somewhere in about the third quarter, is going to go into some territory that they haven't been in with their players. So, that's been a big part of our talk this week. We practice in this heat, we work through it. I liked in the Dallas game where I thought our team got stronger in the third quarter. So, we should feel good about that. But it's always a concern - heat early, playing four quarters. Something you haven't' done; totally different for everybody, not just us."

(on if he would have rather have played a team other than the Steelers opening week) "Well, you worry about things you can control. You know, I can't control that. Everybody knows we've got our full load from a schedule standpoint. But I've been in this league so many years, if you want to get there someday, you better be willing to step up and play them all at any time. Whether it's Monday, Sunday or Saturday, whatever they want you to do. It's still going to boil down to whether or not we play good football. It doesn't matter who we play. If we don't play well, we're going to struggle to win. If we play well, we'll have a shot every week. And our guys know we are going to have to play as good as we can play. I told ya'll that all week, I can't say that enough but we've had a good week of work, so we're ready to go."

(on if RB Steve Slaton's toe is ok) "Yeah, he's been great. We just really were trying to be smart with him last week, not play him. I gave him an extra day off on Saturday, but he has practiced ever since. He's been fine."

(on if T Rashad Butler is ready to play this week) "Yeah, he's ready to play, but I think Ephraim (Salaam) will be our swing guy. Just watching it this week, I think we'll go with Ephraim and work from there. Whether we go with seven or eight linemen, I don't know. We'll decide that on game day."

(on if WR Jacoby Jones or WR David Anderson will be the fourth receiver this weekend) "David (Anderson). David has earned the role. David is going to play a bunch in this game. He's had a great camp and he'll go into this game playing the same role he's played throughout the preseason."

(on what he likes about WR David Anderson so much) "Very competitive. I can play him all over the place. There's no mistakes. Good after the catch. Teammates can count on him. He's earned the right to be on the field when you look at the last six weeks. And that's what this game is all about. You have to earn your keep and he's earned his."

(on what its like to see a guy that gets cut and fights back to make a roster like WR David Anderson did) "Well, I can show you players that play a long time in this league and they are usually those type of guys. They wont take no for answer. They believe in themselves and they are consistent in how they play. And sooner or later they win over, not only the coaching staff, but everybody that they play with. And that's what he's done and he's done it the right way. Hasn't asked for nothing."

(on if he watched the opening game last night) "You know, I saw a little bit of it. Actually, I saw a little bit in my office and I was going to go home and watch the last quarter and my cable was out. So, I didn't get to see the end of the game."

(on if he paid the cable bill) "(Laughs) I don't know, I'm trying to figure that one out."

(on if he notices a difference in himself in year three of being head coach) "I don't know. Somebody else would have to answer that question to you. I feel very comfortable with my staff and the group of guys I got. I have so much confidence in (special teams coach) Joe (Marciano) and being around Joe these three years and the job that he does on special teams. In this business you better just surround yourself with good people and trust them because there's no way one guy can have his finger in every dang thing. I just think it's too big a load. I'm comfortable with the people that work for me."

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