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Practice report: Tempo increased


Gary Kubiak wants the level of intensity dialed up on Sunday in Nashville

The Texans practiced outside on a breezy Wednesday underneath sunny skies at the Methodist Traning Center. They continue their preparations for their Week 2 matchup on the road against the Tennessee Titans.

What's that ruckus?: For much of the 95-minute practice, artificial crowd noise was played over speakers that lined the field to simulate the upcoming game environment at LP Field. It was one of a few wrinkles that were different about practice this week than last.

"We picked up the tempo and got on the clock today," head coach Gary Kubiak said. "I think we'd been really slow in what we were doing, so we picked up the tempo at practice and worked with some adversity out here, because we didn't play anywhere in the preseason that was loud. That's something we really need to work on to get ready."

Wilson's return: Safety Eugene Wilson practiced with the team today and continues his recovery from a knee injury caused by a Brett Favre crack-back block in the Monday Night Football preseason contest against the Vikings.

"Eugene's a big part of this team and he's played very well for us," Kubiak said of Wilson. "Going into Week 1 without him made it tough with just those three safeties. We'd love to have him back."

Wilson said he's anxious to get back as well and doesn't know how much action he'll see on Sunday, but says he wants to take the field for the first time since Aug. 30.

Titan-ic task for the offense: The Tennessee defense gave up 13 points in a Week 1 road loss to the Steelers, and even more impressive, the Steelers managed only 36 rushing yards on 23 attempts. The Texans are looking to run the ball better in Week 2 than they did on Sunday against the Jets, when Steve Slaton and company combined for 38 yards on 13 attempts.

{QUOTE}"They're as good a defense as you'll face, physically," Kubiak said. "We understand that challenge. I think they're playing better (than they did in 2008 with Albert Haynesworth), to be honest with you. I look at an eight-guy rotation that's as good as any group I've ever seen. The team I watched against Pittsburgh was very good."

Kubiak didn't limit his praise of the Titans' defense to just the front line players.

"They tackle as well in the secondary as well as any team that I've seen in my time in the National Football League," Kubiak said. "We've got our work cut for us up front, and everywhere."

Injury update:Wilson and cornerback Jacques Reeves practiced today, along with receiver Kevin Walter. Kubiak expects all three to play against the Titans, but thinks Walter will start and also play the most. Walter took his normal amount of practice reps this morning.

Defensive end Antonio Smith was sick with a stomach flu and missed practice, but said afterward in the locker room that he would definitely play Sunday. Meanwhile, defensive tackle Shaun Cody sat out with a bruised knee, an injury that happened in the waning moments of the Jets game. Fullback Vonta Leach missed practice as well, and Kubiak said Cody and Leach are both day-to-day. Receiver André Davis also is still out due to the concussion he suffered Sunday.

For the full injury report, click **here**.

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