The Texans practiced Friday at the Methodist Training Center and after, head coach Gary Kubiak and running back Arian Foster answered questions from the media. The following is a transcript of their respective interviews.
Head Coach Gary KubiakRB Arian Foster
Head Coach Gary Kubiak(on RB Arian Foster) "He looks ready to play. He's had a good week. I think he'll be fine. He had a really good day yesterday and today. We're pretty limited in what we do today, but he was fine. As long as there's no setbacks, he's ready to go."
(on WR Kevin Walter) "Kevin (Walter) did not practice. He did not practice, so we'll probably work him out a little bit in the morning and take him out before the game to see where he's at, but I would say it's a game-time decision. He did not practice."
(on RB Derrick Ward) "(Derrick) Ward's out. Ward is out. He will definitely be out, probably won't even make the trip."
(on the field conditions for the game on Sunday considering a game will be played the night before) "We have obviously our crew that goes out real early in the morning. Kap (Director of Sports Medicine/Head Athletic Trainer Geoff Kaplan) and those guys go over real early. Players and coaches, you know me, I'm on the last bus coming to the game, so if there's any issue that they worry about, they would call me. Obviously the field's going to get tore up a little bit with somebody else playing on it before you. But it's my understanding the grass is down. The infield is not there, so I think that's a help."
(on if the playbook opens up more with RB Arian Foster back playing) "We prepared last week as if Arian (Foster) was playing, so we're not any different. I think the key right here right now for me the next 48 hours is what type of play count I put on him and watch him from that standpoint, but all signs are he's ready to go. We're going to run our offense regardless of who's playing."
(on how RB Ben Tate factors in with RB Arian Foster back) "He'll be the next guy. Both of those guys will play and Steve's (Slaton) available if we need a third guy. He's definitely going to play. Our second guy always is going to get some carries and play."
(on if he plans to put a play count on RB Arian Foster) "No, I said I have to be a little concerned as we go into the game. We'll go out and play and I'll watch him, see how he's holding up, but I would think that he's definitely not going to be a 60-play guy like he normally is for us. He's a three-down player. We'll listen to Arian, we'll watch him, (Running Backs Coach) Chick (Harris) will watch him, we'll all watch him and hopefully everything goes smooth. He's not going to go play his normal. Arian's been a 90 percent player for us when he plays, so I don't see that happening right now."
(on if there's any difference playing at home or on the road) "No, film all looks the same to us. We're preparing to play them. They played a really good game last week. They moved the heck out of the ball. They just had a guy come in there and have a Hall of Fame night. It's a different team that we're playing this year than we've played in the past just the way they're built. To me, it's just a little bit different challenge for us."
(on OLB Cameron Wake) "Well, he plays all over the place, so he presents a lot of problems for you. On nickel, he moves around and the way they play their 3-4, he plays both sides, so you're not going to lock him into one side. We could get locked up on him with some tight ends, some backs, as well as our tackles, but they're very good on both edges. The kid on the other side's a good player too. He had a lot of sacks last year in Cleveland. They can go get the quarterback. They'll zero out a bunch. We'll have to protect Matt (Schaub)."
(on if it was odd not having WR David Anderson at practice before he came back) "It was definitely quieter. It was a little different, but it's nice to have him back. He fit right in. He knows what we're doing. It's hard in this business when you lose players to go pick somebody up and still be real comfortable as a coach that you can go carry your normal load and that's where we're at this week. With David (Anderson) coming back, nothing has changed. We didn't feel like we had to stop, just hop in there and go. He'll suit up and probably he'll play some."
(on what WR David Anderson's personality does for the team) "I don't know. Every team's different. I've been on great teams that are quiet, don't say much and some that talk a lot and are pretty good, too. It just matters how you play. Really, our team's been pretty quiet for the most part this year. David (Anderson) even mentioned that to me that he saw a little bit of difference since coming back. It doesn't matter how you do it, as long as you do it, so hopefully we can go play some good football."
(on if WR Brandon Marshall is any different this year than in the past) "Well, he's healthy. You can tell he's healthy and they're built to get him the ball. He moves around a lot and he's going to get his opportunities in the game, regardless, so it's a big challenge for us, big, big player, him and Andre (Johnson), same body size. Then they got Reggie (Bush) coming out of the backfield, so they got challenges. They can make a lot of big plays. We're going to have to limit them."
RB Arian Foster(on what it means to him that Head Coach Gary Kubiak thinks the Texans are at their best when he is playing) "It means he thinks that we're the best when I'm out there, so that's a high compliment from a man that's been in the League for 20-something odd years and it means a lot."
(on how he felt today) "I felt good today."
(on his anticipation to play on Sunday) "It's my first game of the season, so I am very anxious to play football."
(on his hamstring as the week has progressed) "It's trying to get in playing shape. I haven't played football since August, so there has been fatigue, but that's part of it."
(on how long he will be able to play on Sunday) "That remains to be seen. I'm going to go out there and see how I feel and if I feel like it's not an issue and my conditioning isn't an issue, which I don't think it is, I'm going to play like I normally play."