Texans head coach Gary Kubiak met with the media on Monday morning at Reliant Stadium. The following is a transcript of his press conference.
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on how he's going to get his team turned around after losing a big game) "That's part of what we do. We just go back to work. Obviously, we've got a lot of mistakes we've got to look in the eye and fix. We've got to do everything we can to correct some of the problems we've got. But just pick your chin up off the ground and go back to work Wednesday and get ready to play again. That's part of what we do."
(on how concerned he is with QB Matt Schaub not being sharp or consistent) "Well, I think there's some reasons why. Obviously, we've got a problem on third downs right now. It has not been good the last three weeks. If there was one problem, we'd go address that. There's many, many issues going on. But there is one consistent issue and the consistent issue is third-and-long. We have 12, officially 11 third downs yesterday. Of the 12, nine of them were over eight yards. So, you're setting yourself up for very bad situations. He's got to play better in some of those situations. We definitely have to protect better in some of those situations. We've got to make more plays in those situations and we've got to call better plays in those situations. So all those things working together, when they start splintering and awry, they add up to a very difficult problem. But it's not on (QB) Matt (Schaub). It's not on one guy. It's everybody doing a better job."
(on OLB Brooks Reed) "The two guys we came out of the game with (injuries), obviously (RB) Arian (Foster) and (OLB) Brooks (Reed), I just talked to (Director of Sports Medicine/Head Athletic Trainer Geoff Kaplan) Kap. Brooks got sore, which we expected. We went into the game expecting to play him a certain amount of plays. We knew he would get sore, probably there was some scar tissue-type stuff that he was going to have to go through but there were no setbacks. We did re-examine him yesterday and there were no setbacks, so we're moving back forward with him. We are running some tests today with Arian, just to be sure but everything has been positive and we're expecting him to be back also. That's the two guys right now that obviously were questions coming out of the game, but everything looks good, as of my last conversation."
(on what has changed from the team's success on third downs earlier in the season) "I think we were actually pretty good for about 10 weeks, pretty good, third down-wise. The first glaring thing I look at is, why so many long-yardage situations? Usually those are coming if we're not running the ball very good. Yesterday is a great example. To have 12 third-down plays and not one of them was a run, that's disturbing. There's a couple of them that could have been and I didn't call them. But for us to do what we do best, there's a percentage of those that we need to be in position to line up and run the football and we haven't done that in the last month. Getting back to that is a big point of emphasis. Now that's a lot easier said than done, so we've got to look at ourselves hard to make sure we can get that done."
(on if he knows Indianapolis Head Coach Chuck Pagano) "Just as a coaching friend."
(on what Indianapolis Head Coach Chuck Pagano has gone through and his expected return to the sideline for Sunday's game) "I know everybody is just very thankful for what he's been through and that things are going good and that he'll be back on the field this week. That's a very difficult situation and what he's been through for him and his family. To line back up on the sidelines and coach a game that he loves, I just know a lot of people that know Chuck (Pagano) and have tremendous respect for him as a coach and a man and I have a lot of respect for a lot of players that have played for him have told me what type of coach and person he is. It's good. It's great for him and it will be great to see him back on the sidelines this weekend. Happy for him."
(on playing the Colts twice in three weeks) "I don't know either way. It's unusual in this business to turn around in a three-week span and play somebody twice. From a preparation standpoint, obviously, they're looking hard at the last time we played them and we've got another game yesterday to look at, them one of us and us one of them. It's a quick turnaround. My deal right now, really with me this morning, is focusing on us. We've got to address us and everything that's going on before we get on the plane to go to Indianapolis. That's my focus today."
(on the offense's first down struggles) "Well actually through the course of the year we've been a pretty good first down team. I think we're second or third in the AFC, averaging like five and a half yards a first down play. That's pretty darn good, but if you look at the last few weeks when we have run the ball, there have been too many negative football plays. You look yesterday, the first two runs of the game and the next play we had third-and-10. You look at the first two runs of the second half. The first third down, we had third-and-13. There is a consistency lacking right there. We run the ball for what 30-something yards and we have one 13-yard play, so there is a consistency lacking there. That keeps us on schedule and keeps us playing the way we want to play. Third downs are tough in this business. You go out and make half of them you're going to be at the top of the league. But you've got to make some, you've got to make some to stay on the field and right now, obviously yesterday, we didn't make any."
(on OLB Brooks Reed's play yesterday) "I think he played okay. Anytime a guy misses time, they've got to come back and get going again. He did make some plays, getting his wind back, getting himself to where he can play a whole game. I think we've got a ways to go there so hopefully he comes back this week. He plays a little bit more. There are no setbacks and then he continues to progress as we move forward."
(on if he's worried about his offensive line) "Yeah, there is some concern there with some of the things going on. Didn't like our pocket in a lot of situations yesterday. I think (T) Derek (Newton) is coming back from an injury for us and fighting through that. We need to continue to get better over there with what we're doing, but he's battling for us coming off of an injury. Yeah, the consistency of the pocket and some of the opportunities we're giving our quarterback need to be better. When we do give it to him, obviously, we've got to be better back there playing that position too."
(on if it's ever easy to get over a tough loss) "I don't know if it's ever easy getting beat because you're always judging. How'd we play? How'd we do? How'd we do this? How'd we do that? So there are a lot of questions in a lot of areas. Defensively, I know we can play a lot better than we played yesterday. I know we can get off the field on third down. You've got questions in what's going on. Do we get over it? Yeah, we'll get over it. You come back in Wednesday and you've got a new game plan, new focus, and we're going someplace that's very tough to play. We'll get over that. There is no doubt about that, but we've got to focus on the things that it takes to win. We've got to do them a lot better right now than we're doing."
(on G Brandon Brooks' play) "He played young. He had been stepping forward. In this game, I think he played like a young player, against a good group now. That group up front is really good, had a mistake on the goal line that he can't make. He was prepared to do it the right way and we didn't do it the right way. He is encouraging as a coach because he can be physically dominant. We just need him to keep his chin up and keep working. He's going to continue to play and play more."
(on if this week is about executing on the field) "Every week is about the same thing. Every week is about focusing on your game plan, getting ready physically to go play, getting to Sunday, being as good as you can be, playing with emotion, playing hard, but it always gets down to making plays. It's you against somebody else and who is going to make the most plays. Nothing is given to you in this league. I thought we had a good week of practice last week. I thought we were ready to play, but obviously we did not play very well. You regroup and move on."