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Quotes: Monday practice


Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line Bill Kollar's health) "He's doing good. I talked to him at length this morning. I talked to his wife a long time. Everything is under control. They just did not want him flying home with the team last night. He took a series of tests today, which all came out good and the plan is for him to be on a plane tomorrow morning to be back here sometime Wednesday afternoon. Everything is going good. I just feel very fortunate and the doctors did a great job. (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line) Bill's (Kollar) feeling fine today."

(on when Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line Bill Kollar will be back coaching) "I don't know, probably all depends on what times he gets in. You know (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line) Bill (Kollar). He's mad that he has to stay there until Wednesday. The bottom line, we just make sure he's okay. I would say he's out there Wednesday at the earliest, Thursday at the latest."

(on where Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line Bill Kollar's blood clot was) "I don't really know all the specifics. I just know that that's what he had, some shortness of breath, some things going on. Kap (Director of Sports Medicine/Head Athletic Trainer Geoff Kaplan) and them said, 'We're not going to let you go on the field until we run some tests on you.' So they took him down to do the tests and there was some clot issue that they needed to address and something that may have happened back before to (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line) Bill (Kollar), if I'm correct on that. That's why they didn't want him flying home."

(on if Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line Bill Kollar wanted to do the tests) "No, you know (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line) Bill (Kollar). He didn't want to go."

(on the health of RB Ben Tate and TE Owen Daniels) "Let's talk with (RB Ben) Tate and (TE) Owen (Daniels), I guess put them in the same category. I would think Owen is probably a little bit further along. I think they both have a chance of playing in this game. We'll know more as we get to Wednesday and Thursday. But remember, Tate has been running with the trainers so that's a move in the right direction. He's very close. Owen did work out before the game on Sunday. We made the decision to hold him. But the fact that he worked up to that point trying to play tells you how close he is. We get him back rested here and get some treatment, see where we're at later on in the week."

(on NT Shaun Cody's health status) "He's got an excellent chance of playing this week. We're going to do kind of a trial run on Wednesday with him with the trainers, how we would approach the game with him. If he's able to work through that situation I think you could see him on the field probably Thursday or Friday. We're heading toward him being back active and being a part of it."

(on NT Earl Mitchell's play) "(NT) Earl (Mitchell) has played well, between he and (NT) Shaun (Cody), they split time. Depending on how much base we're playing compared to nickel and those types of things, there could be a lot of reps in a game, not many. Earl is an ascending player. He's been getting better. He and (TE) Garrett (Graham), if I picked two guys that have really improved a great deal as young players, Earl is in there. We called on him to pick it up last night. We played four d-linemen. (NT Terrell) McClain did not play and got great production out of all of them, but Earl has been doing that so it didn't surprise us."

(on LT Duane Brown's play last night) "He didn't go against (DE Julius) Peppers the whole time. They moved him everywhere, played him on the right, played him on the left, played him inside so everybody, unfortunately, got a piece of him. That's how great of a player he is. He's exceptional. I think (LT) Duane's (Brown) been playing at a big-time level. You talk about playing at a Pro Bowl level as a player and those types of things and how far Duane has come. I think he's done that for a couple years.  I don't think this year is any different. We played well up front. We played hard. I put them in some tough situations because we were so committed to the run with the weather and those types of things. There are eight, nine guys in that box many times and I liked how hard we played and how we battled all night long across the front."

(on LT Duane Brown's play this season ) "(LT) Duane's (Brown) a real pro. He's a guy who works extremely hard at what he does. He really studies his opponents. I think he's taken a step forward from that standpoint. He always gets the best. When you're a left tackle in the NFL, you're going to probably get the best pass rusher. It's just part of it. Duane , he's been a rock for us ever since he walked into this place. We split some time with him early in his career, but since then he's been great."

(on SS Danieal Manning's play last night) "He's been playing very well. He's been very consistent. Last night, he makes those huge plays, just tremendous on the ball and had a chance. He almost put the game away there in the fourth quarter with that pick. He's been a consistent player for us. I think I mentioned this last night and I think John (McClain) might have asked me after the game. (SS) Danieal (Manning) really knew what we were going into and the type of game we were going to be in. He played there for a long time and knows how that weather gets there. He did a really good job with our team the night before the game, just talking about what it was going to take to win in that place. He's a leader on this team and a fine player. I thought he did an exceptional job with the rest of his teammates this week letting them know what it was going to be like, how we were going to have to play to win that game."

(on if CB Kareem Jackson is a most improved player this season) "No doubt. He's come so far. I don't put him in that category anymore. I think he's been playing at an extremely high level. We all know what (CB) Kareem's (Jackson) been through. Good pros, they go through tough times early in their career, but then when they come out of it, they're consistent and good for a long, long time. I think that's what you're seeing from Kareem. He has a ton of confidence in (Defensive Coordinator) Wade's (Phillips) scheme. Kareem is a smart player and I think (Defensive Backs Coach Vance Joseph) VJ has just done a wonderful job with him, not only as a player, but as a person. So real proud of how far he's come."

(on if a win like last night's gives a team even more confidence) "I think the more ways you find to win in this league, you get more confidence because you never know when you show up what it's going to take that given day. Last night, I think we knew what it was going to take, but were we willing to do it? Could we sit in there and go toe-to-toe with them in that type of game and be patient and all those things as a team and win the kicking game, all those things that we were able to get done? It's got to give us confidence down the road because we have some really tough road games coming up here in the back half of the season, but things like that give you a chance to be a great team. There will be nothing false about what we are when we get there at the end because we're in some tough situations and the more we handle them the better we get."

(on the health of ILB Tim Dobbins and ILB Bradie James) "(ILB Tim) Dobbins is actually doing pretty good today. I think we're going to be touch-and-go throughout the course of the week. He's got a pretty good shoulder that we worked through. Boy, did he play well in the game and has played well for us since (ILB Brian Cushing) Cush went down. I think he could be midweek, late week before you see him on the field, but knowing Dobbins, I expect him to be there. The other one was (ILB) Bradie (James). Bradie just has a thumb issue that really he's dealt with throughout the course of his career. He has a thumb that will pop in and out at times. He finds a way to work through it so I don't expect that to be any different."

(on if the coaching staff's Super Bowl experiences help prepare the team) "We've got a lot of experience on our staff and none bigger than the experience (Defensive Coordinator) Wade (Phillips) brought when here a couple years ago and (Linebackers Coach) Reggie (Herring) and some new faces from that standpoint. This league, coaches, they bounce around, experience is a big factor in this league to me. I think our players know we've got a good group. I think our guys work extremely well together, very unselfish group of coaches. Everybody is on the same page. It's an excellent staff. It's just a good group of guys and I think when players sense that confidence in the group, too, it obviously helps the team."

(on celebrating last night's win and refocusing on Sunday's game against Jacksonville) "We celebrate winning. We do that. You've got to enjoy. Winning in this league is too hard. If you get to where winning is relief and losing is grief, then you're in the wrong business so you better enjoy it. I think what we've done a good job of is our guys just understand how important it is to just go to the next week. Unfortunately, you lose to getting beat, too. If you sit there and get beat on a given day and you just beat yourself for three or four days and it lingers, it usually goes into the next. You learn to let that go. You have to learn to let big games go, too. We felt great about last night. We get home 4:30-5 in the morning. We've got to get ready for a division opponent real quick. It's just part of the maturing process. I think if you want to be a good enough to someday put yourself in the position to win a championship so I think we're growing up from that standpoint."

(on if the coaching staff talks about those mindsets with the players) "We talk about it. We talk about it all the time. We talk about being consistent and we talk about how hard it is. I want them to know how hard it is to win in this league. I want them to appreciate getting to success, how hard that it is to do but at the same time just keeping in perspective what's going on and knowing that the big goal is can you get good enough to win a championship? I think there's a difference. Can you be good enough to get in the playoffs? Can you do this or that? Can you be a good enough football team or a good enough organization to win a championship? Someday I think they're different levels and we're trying to work our way toward that mindset as we move forward."

(on if the defense is playing better this year than last season) "That'd be hard to say but I would say this, I think we picked up where we left off in the playoffs. We played so well in the playoffs last year and I think it's continued. I think we went through a little shock of losing a great player against Green Bay. Then we overcome that and got that confidence. That's part of this league because you're going to have some bumps in the road. They knew what they were facing last night. They knew what was going on. They knew the type of defense we were facing offensively and they knew how big they were in the football game. Boy, did they rise to the occasion."

(on having confidence in the defense to protect late leads) "That's a tremendous luxury when you're sitting there with four minutes left in the game and feel like I don't have to try to do something that could hurt our team here. Third and 13, we ran the ball. We're going to give it back to you. We're going to make you beat us because we're playing good defense, obviously the weather and those things that add into it. It not only gives me a lot of confidence as the coach, but it gives our team a lot of confidence. Guys are sitting on the sidelines saying 'Hey, let's punt it to them. We'll get it done.' That's something that filters throughout everybody."

(on the challenge for the coaching staff in having three games in 11 days) "I think the challenge this week is no different as far as what we've got to do. The big challenge comes when you walk off the field Sunday, so that's different. Our routine this week doesn't change a bit. We focus. We do what we normally do. Then those things get crowded under a short period there, but because of some of the things we've had to do, Monday night New York, Sunday night Chicago, we've had some tough trips, some tough turnarounds. I think we're a little bit more prepared for that and a little bit better handling that right now. We'll find out. It's going to happen here."

(on winning the possession battle) "It's been huge. I think we're number one in possession time. If we're holding onto the football, that means our defense is fresh. It usually means we're running the ball pretty good. Last night was one of those cases where it was just a necessity with what was going on. We were going to have to stay committed to it and the second half got extremely tough. We just hung in there and (RB) Arian (Foster) popped a few and made a few big plays. We were able to get that field goal. That was huge. That kick by (K) Shayne (Graham) was big in the game. It's something that we take a lot of pride in. It's something that's important to us being successful."

(on Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips) "He's tremendous at calling a game. I can tell you that. I went against him on the other side for many years. Watching him work, watching him call a game, go through that process, the staff that he's put together, obviously him and (Linebackers Coach) Reggie (Herring) have been together for a long time, going to get (Defensive Backs Coach Vance Joseph) VJ and the job that VJ has done and you all know the job that (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line) Bill (Kollar) does. It's an excellent group. He's the one that pulls the trigger and makes the calls. He's as good as there is in this business, has been for a long time."

(on RB Arian Foster's performance against Chicago) "I would say that was about the toughest 102 yards a man could get. If you sit there and look at some of the great games he's had, I don't think there's anything bigger than last night because we were running against eight-, nine- man fronts all night. Everybody and their brother knew who was getting the ball and he still found a way to keep us on track. I was very proud of him. That play he made in the end zone was exceptional. (RB) Arian (Foster) is having a huge year and playing with a lot of confidence right now."

(on what the Texans showed the country last night) "I don't know what we showed people. I know what we're proving to ourselves. That's the most important thing is what are these guys feeling in the locker room. We faced circumstances that we needed to rise up to last night. It was obvious from the minute that you showed up to the stadium what type of football game you're going to have to play and how you were going to have to play to win. If anything, we proved our self, we can go do that. I don't think we've been in one like that in a while. We've been in a high-scoring game on the road early in the season and then we go get in a game like yesterday's so if anything we proved to ourselves that we can, regardless of what it takes, we can win those types of games." 

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