FOUNDER, CHAIRMAN & CEO BOB MCNAIR
HEAD COACH BILL O'BRIEN
CB A.J. BOUYE
T DUANE BROWN
ILB BRIAN CUSHING
DE JARED CRICK
TE OWEN DANIELS
TE C.J. FIEDOROWICZ
RB ARIAN FOSTER
WR DEANDRE HOPKINS
CB KAREEM JACKSON
WR ANDRE JOHNSON
QB CASE KEENUM
FS KENDRICK LEWIS
SS DANIEAL MANNING
C CHRIS MYERS
T DEREK NEWTON
NT RYAN PICKETT
DE J.J. WATT
OWNER BOB MCNAIR(Transcribed by Omar Majzoub)
(on the win today) "It's our biggest win (of the season). Very few people gave us a chance. Coach O'Brien brought them together and told them, "look here's our plan. Let's execute our plan and we can go out and win this game." They listened to him, they followed, and they executed, and played hard. I can't tell you how proud I am."
(on the job Case Keenum did) "I thought it was fantastic coming in like that. What did he have one
turnover, I believe? That made a big difference. Our defense just dominated to such an extent. It's just unbelievable."
(on the Texans still having playoff hopes) "Yeah, we're still in it. It depends on how other teams do going forward. We still have one next week. Jacksonville is an improved team and we're going to have to go out and play hard against them and play well. I think we'll be ready, but it makes for an exciting time in Houston. I couldn't be more excited myself."
(on how good he feels considering where the team was a year ago) "I felt, as I said at the beginning of the year, I thought we could contend for the playoffs and that's what we're doing, but very few other people felt that way, so yeah it's a big change. We've got things going in the right direction and Coach (Bill O'Brien) is doing a great job."
(on the job Head Coach Bill O'Brien and Defensive Coordinator Romeo Crennel did today) "Well, I just thought it was tremendous. I mean, the plan they had and the way they executed it. They made their offense totally ineffective. As we started off, as you saw, we did a number of things that were different. We moved the ball down the field and created some opportunities and scored some points and put Case (Keenum) in a position where he could succeed."
HEAD COACH BILL O'BRIEN(Transcribed by Charles Hampton and Ellie Pardee)
(on what today's game meant to him and the team) "I would say that that was just a great team
effort, especially by the players. Those guys worked really hard, very hard this week to put in extra time against a very, very difficult Baltimore team on all three phases. So I give a lot of credit to our players, our coaching staff, I thought everybody came together and it was a great win for us. Again, nothing is guaranteed but at least our last game means something, and that's a big thing for this organization."
(on the offensive philosophy today) "George (Godsey) and I sat down at the beginning of the week, you know, and George puts a lot of time in and I give him a lot of credit with these guys. I think that we sat down and said, look at the end of the day, we've got a guy, Case (Keenum) coming in here that hasn't been here for a while, and I give him a lot of credit. He came in and stepped right in on practice on Wednesday and in the meetings and he was right on point with everything that we were doing, he has got great recollection, did a great job with that, and then we mixed things up. We felt like we had to mix things up against a great defense. We think that Baltimore has a hell of a defense and we were able to move the ball a little bit but give them credit, they stopped us at times, but overall we played a pretty good game offensively."
(on saying in his radio show this week that the coaching staff has been performing well) "I believe in this coaching staff. I think there are times when—that was maybe taken a little out of context. I mean I was talking about at times I think there is always things that we can do better, but I think that overall when you look at our coaching staff that we've worked well with the players. But, I give the players a lot of credit, that the players have shown up every week, and practiced hard and worked hard in meetings, and it hasn't always gone our way. I think everybody in here has put in a lot of time to get this first year of kind of a new coaching regime in here and get it off on the right foot. I'm not saying 8-7 is where we want to be, but I know that it's better than two wins and it's an improvement over last year."
(on the defense today) "I think the players on defense have really done a good job of improving every week of improving, especially over the last two weeks. When I say improving I'm talking about within the scheme of what we're trying to do. They've done a really good job of doing their job. I thought today was a great example of that. We came out for 60 minutes, played physical against an offense that had really been playing very well and a great quarterback. I give our guys a lot of credit for doing their job for 60 minutes. We rushed the passer, we played good coverage, we stopped the run for the most part, I just thought it was a hell of an effort by our defense."
(on Arian Foster's touchdown pass and his performance today) "I've said this many times, Arian is one of the best players at his position in this league. He's a guy where he can throw the ball, so we've got a number of ways for him to throw the ball in the package that we used today with wildcat, we had some throws there that we just haven't used yet. He can throw the football, he's got that ability, I mean throw it very well. So when we were down there we just felt like that was a good spot for that call, it was one we'd been working on for a couple weeks, he executed, C.J. (Fiedorowicz) did a good job, the line and everybody did a good job on that play."
(on Defensive Coordinator Romeo Crennel's performance today in getting the defense ready) "I mean, Romeo is a proven coach, he's done it for many, many years in this league at a very high level. He's been a member of five Super Bowls; he's a great football coach. I think the staff has done a really good job of working with him, it's a staff that really works well together, they work hard and they communicate well and I think they communicate with the players well. The players have done a good job of going out there and executing, especially over the last two weeks. I give our players a lot of credit."
(on what it says about the team that they lost three quarterbacks and won with a quarterback not on the team a week ago) "I give a lot of credit, like I said, to all of the guys that have played quarterback for us this year. I think every game that has played quarterback for us this year has done a good job. I know it hasn't always been perfect; I understand that. Believe me, I get it. At the end of the day, these guys have come in here, the latest example being Case (Keenum), and understanding this is pro football. The next man has to step up. Even if that next guy wasn't in the building a week ago, he showed up Monday and was ready to go. Like I said, he had good recollection. He's a good leader and I thought he managed the offense very well today."
(on the play of the secondary) "Very competitive guys. They're competitive in practice. Everything that they do, they compete at. There is a lot of spirit in that group. Every day they go out to practice, they're having fun. They're flying around. They've made a lot of plays for us this year—a lot of takeaways. I think a lot of that has to do with the pass rush and it's all working together, but I give our secondary a lot of credit. Back there, they have got some good veterans in J-Jo (Johnathan Joseph), D-Man (Danieal Manning), and Kareem Jackson has done a good job this year. I think the younger guys have good examples right there as far as work ethic and competitiveness and I'm just very proud of that secondary."
(on what the key was to keep the Ravens pass rush off of QB Case Keenum) "Our offensive line did a really good job. I think our offensive line should get a lot of credit today because I think they did a very, very good job of pass protection. Even though the running game wasn't always easy, I thought our offensive line always battled hard in the running game. I would include our tight ends in that group too. I just think that those guys are one of the most improved units on our team. Case (Keenum) did a good job of getting rid of the ball for the most part. I think you've got to give credit to our offensive line because that's a very, very tough front seven for Baltimore."
(on G Brandon Brooks leaving the game with an ankle injury) "That was a tough, tough deal there. I didn't see it; I will have to see it on film. It looks like he kind of got bent back and we'll see how he's doing. I'm not sure yet. Again, it's that next man up philosophy. (Tyson) Clabo went in there and give a lot of credit to Derek Newtwon, he moved in to right guard. It looks like he did a nice job in there. The more you can do, the more valuable you are to the team. Derek is a guy that can play right tackle, left tackle, and today moved in to right guard. I thought Clabes (Clabo) went in there and did a nice job. Jeff Adams had a couple of snaps in there at a heavy tight end position. Again, give the offensive line a lot of credit."
(on O'Brien giving everybody a lot of credit and how much credit the head coach should get) "None. This is about a team and a coaching staff that has worked really hard. I'm very proud of these guys. I'm very, very proud of these guys."
(on what he loves about WR Andre Johnson as a receiver and a player) "He's one of the best pros I've ever been around and when you think about the pros I've been around, that's a hell of a list. This guy is a hall of fame wide receiver. He works hard every single day. He works with our coaching staff very well. I can give you numerous examples where I've asked him to do certain things: block, run a certain route, slip screens, do this, do that. 'Whatever you need me to do, Coach. Whatever you need me to do.' I think he's a great example for younger players. At times I look out there and I wish he wasn't in his 12th year, but that's the way it is. I think the guy has done everything that we've asked him to do. I just have a tremendous amount of respect for him. He's one of the best leaders in our locker room and he does it by example which I really respect."
CORNERBACK A.J. BOUYE(Transcribed by John Byczek)
(on getting a big way in dominating fashion) "Oh yeah, Coach OB (O'Brien) gave us a really good talk
today. It got us fired up, mad, ready to go hit somebody. We was all just playing together, man, and making play."
(on what coach O'Brien said in pregame speech) "Let's go out there and get this win. They're underestimating us. We're going to show them who we are.' We love Coach OB. That's somebody you want to play behind. Just having him tell us that and going out there, our coaches, our DB coaches, everybody was all on the same page. We just kept competing."
(on if his confidence in growing) "It goes up a little bit. One thing I learned is I can't be down on myself in this league, I'm here for a reason and just to keep competing. Coaches were getting on me about that earlier in the season and being inconsistent. I just had to come out here and keep competing and stay positive."
TACKLE DUANE BROWN(Transcribed by Edgar Veliz)
(on the advantage of playing in a high-tempo offense) "I think it is a big advantage for us up front. You get a defense like that, you get to moving the ball, get some first downs and guys started to get a little tired. They have a bigger defense than most, so we tried to get those guys as gassed as possible. I think it works to our advantage. So whenever we were able to go no-huddle and continue to move the chains, you can see them getting tired. We still have to finish those drives though. When we get in the redzone we have to get seven instead of three (points). That is something that we have to focus on later this week."
(on Case Keenum's communication in the huddle) "My hat goes off to Case. He came in and all week he did a heck of a job. From his recall from when he was here before, to picking up the new things
that we installed since he was gone. In practice he was in sync with the receivers. Communication, audibles, everything he did. He worked his tail off. You really couldn't tell that he was gone for four months. It was that smooth. My hat goes off to him."
(on Case Keenum's limited amount of time to prepare) "It is crazy. You don't see that. Especially with an offense as complex as the one we run. It asks a lot from the quarterback position. He was here for a while and got to learn a lot of it. His recall was great. He came in and didn't skip a beat. He worked his tail off and I really commend him for his efforts."
(on Derek Newton's play at guard) "I can't say enough about Newton and how much he has worked and how much he has progressed this year. He's really had a great year in my opinion. It is another game to show that. You just don't make that transition from tackle to guard. He's 6'6, moving in and playing that way with (Tyson) Clabo coming in who hasn't gotten much action this year coming in and blocking one of the leading sack masters in the NFL, it was just one of those days. You couldn't really imagine some of the things happening. It is one of those weeks I should say. Guys found a way of getting it done. That's a sign of a very resilient and tough team."
(on coach Bill O'Brien's pregame speech) "Very interesting. A lot of expletives, a lot of stuff I can't repeat. Just the kind of message he wanted to get across to us. Just what kind of game it would be. Just what message you wanted to send with this game. Baltimore is a great team. They are a very physical team. He just wanted to go out and send a message."
(on still having playoff aspirations) "It feels great. We work our tails off to get in this position. At this point of the year this is all you can ask for. Play your tail off in December and today was one of those days where we did that. It wasn't pretty, from an offensive standpoint. From a defensive standpoint it was very pretty. They played awesome. We got it done. It is a great feeling."
(on helping Case Keenum earn his first victory as a professional quarterback) "I came in and had not realized how many games he has played without a win. To come and go through what he has gone through in these last two years, I can only imagine what is going through his head. He gave us a little, mini-speech earlier. You could hear him getting a little choked up. It was great. I can't say enough about him coming in and how hard he's worked to face that kind of defense and run the offense as great as he did today. We just want to fight for him. We want to fight for him and give him a chance. I think we did that."
INSIDE LINEBACKER BRIAN CUSHING(Transcribed by Lance Jaramillo)
(on how the win feels) "It feels good. We worked hard all week. It feels good to accomplish what we expected."
(on if it helped that The Texans are familiar with Ravens offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak's offense) "I'm not sure. Obviously there were some familiar plays that we've seen before, but for the most part he's a good offensive coordinator that knows how to switch things up."
(on staying aggressive after a good start on defense) "Football is a game of momentum and we got going; it felt good and everyone was playing really well and playing disciplined football and we just executed."
(on if QB Case Keenum inspired them to win) "I'm not sure. It's a cool situation seeing him comeback, but everyone wants to win regardless of who our quarterback is or what's going on, but seeing Case back was nice, but the main objective is to win every week regardless of who's playing."
(on what's clicked over the last two games for the Texans to succeed) "We've played well. At the same time we're one and one. Everyone praised us last week but we didn't win. That's the bottom line. We have high aspirations and goals for this football team, some people might not think that, but we do. We feel like we've played well and we're getting better. We needed to win today and that's the bottom line. We need to win every game from here on out."
(on making QB Joe Flacco uncomfortable) "We can't let him just sit back there and pick you apart, because he obviously can. He's got very good receivers and he's got a very strong arm and he's a good player. On top of that, he's got a very good offensive coordinator also coaching him. We just played a really good game overall."
(on making them one dimensional) "I think we just wanted to play aggressive. We understand they're an aggressive football team, we wanted to be more aggressive than them and we got that done today."
(on the physicality of the game) "It's the NFL and every week is going to be physical. Obviously some teams are more physical than others; we feel that we're up there with the most physical teams, so we wanted to come in there today and play hard, but anytime you're playing at home it's very important to protect your home and that was the whole goal."
(on head coach Bill O'Brien's pregame speech) "He's a fiery guy and every speech is very intense. I think every team takes on the personality of their coach and this team has really done that in a good way."
DEFENSIVE END JARED CRICK(Transcribed by Hannah Pietsch)
(on today's performance) "We played defense as a team. We've got a great group, and we knew we had a great group. We just had to go out there and prove it on the field. Today, we did that. We did some really good things and I'm proud to go out there and snap and play as hard as we can. Paid off for us today."
(on if they were feeding off each other to keep the pressure on them) "Always. You're always feeding off each other. That's why you go out there and play together because of the emotion of the game and the momentum and all that. We just had to go out there. Guys were making plays, and guys were feeding off that and making more plays, and obviously that leads to victories more than not."
(on today's momentum was tangible) "Without question. Just starting as early as we did too. Kicking it off right and staying on them. I think that was the biggest thing for us. We had times where we played great and we then we'll have little lulls where they'll score points, but today I thought we played a complete game through and through.
(on if QB Case Keenum coming back to the team lifted the team) "Oh yeah, we knew Case was going to come in and play solid football for us. Case is Houston's hero, so to have him back, we're proud to be behind him, so it was easy to fall in. Case is great. He's one of the better guys on the team. To have him come in, despite everything that happened last year, to come in and win the first start of the season, couldn't start any better."
TIGHT END C.J. FIEDOROWICZ(Transcribed by Omar Majzoub)
(on the play where he scored his first NFL touchdown) "We've been running that play the last two or three weeks in practice. When we were on the six-yard line that was our goal, to get that play run. Coach (O'Brien) called it. There was a toss to Arian to make it look like we were doing an outside run play. He ended up dropping back and throwing that pass, so it worked perfectly."
(on what was running through his mind when the ball was up in the air coming to him) "It felt like it was coming so slow. I felt like it was in the air forever. I knew I had to make that catch. I've seen the guy kind of coming back to me and reacting to the ball, but I knew I had to go up and get it. That was a big play for the team."
(on the feeling of scoring his first NFL touchdown) "Oh, there's no better feeling than when you've got five 300-pounders coming and jumping on to you. I missed that feeling from college and it's been a while since I scored a touchdown, so it feels good. It was a big-time in the game on third down. It feels good to help out the team."
RUNNING BACK ARIAN FOSTER(Transcribed by Nida Chaudhry)
(on how long he has been practicing passing) "My whole life, actually. Everybody wants to be a quarterback, but I feel like I have a good arm, man, so I've been lobbying since I've been in the NFL. They finally called it."
(on how it felt to be on the other side of a touchdown) "It was weird. I didn't know what to do. You don't have the ball, but you were part of it, so I didn't really know, like, do I go? Do I not? Do I play it off cool? You know what I mean? So I just ran, so it was fun."
(on how difficult it was to throw a touchdown pass with a defender in his face) "Very difficult, you know. I just, I'm great at quarterback I feel. I mean, we've been practicing it. Never with a person tackling me before, but I just kind of trusted that he was going to get off the block and be there and he was."
(on what it means to be in the playoff hunt with one game left) "That's why we play, is to get in to the dance, you know. We didn't put ourselves in position to control our own destiny, but, we gave ourselves a chance. As long as we have that chance, we're going to keep fighting."
(on resilience this year versus last year) "Last year was last year, man, but this team does have a lot of fight in it. It does have a lot of resilience and we believe in each other. A couple of breaks go our way throughout the season and it's an entirely different picture, but that's all in the past and the only thing we can control is next week."
(on what it meant to come out fast offensively) "I think it was important to come out like that. I know that offense very well, that Baltimore offense, and they're predicated off of running the ball and it was going to be a possession game. I knew that coming in, or we knew that coming in. The main thing on our side was we had to control the ball. We felt like whoever was going to control the ball was going to win the game and that first drive was good for us because it kept us on the field. We were dinking and dunking them and I think that really kind of set up the entire game."
(on offensive line) "They played good. Anytime we have success in the run game, it's because of those guys up front. They've been doing a good job all year. You know we have some injuries up front, but guys did a good job stepping in. (Derek) Newton has been our right tackle all year, he had to come in and play right guard and that's a totally different world, to go from tackle to a guard. He came in there and played really well."
(on being engaged and playing off versatility) "I've always felt like I was a dual-threat running back, yeah, a dual-threat running back. I think this being my first year in this offense; I think we're just scratching the surface of what we can do with my skill set in this offense. I'm excited to keep growing in this offense and I feel like they are very creative in what they do. They know that they have a running back that can get it done. They go to me and I appreciate that."
(on thoughts about taking snaps during the installation of the game plan and during the game) "About time."
(on QB Case Keenum's performance) "He's been the first one up here, the last one to leave the entire week and that's hard. People don't understand how hard that is—going from one offense to another within a week and just picking up the lingo and the checks and there's so much that goes into it and he came in here and just studied his ass off and I just, my bad, whatever, but he did and I'm proud of him, man. This is like his home city. Crowd loves him and he loves it here. He got a little emotional after the game and rightfully so, he came out here and played a hell of a game. That's hard to do. My hats off to him and he came in here and played well."
WIDE RECIEVER DEANDRE HOPKINS(Transcribed by Omar Majzoub)
(on the way QB Case Keenum played) "Coming in, we knew Case had the confidence to come out and get the job done. He showed that today. He was with us in the preseason and went through training camp, so we knew Case was going to come in and help us out. He did a great job."
(on throwing the ball deep to prevent the Ravens from stacking the box) "I think that was part of the game plan. We executed it. Coming out first play showing that we could go deep and we did that."
(on using the "back page" of the playbook and running unique plays) "With this offense, there's really nothing in the back page. This is a multi-dimensional offense. They can throw out a lot of stuff at you that you don't game plan for. I mean, it's part of the game plan when stuff happens that you don't expect to happen."
(on if running the wildcat caught the Ravens defense off guard) "I'm not sure. I'm not on the offensive line, so I cant speak for them."
(on the Texans defense playing well) "Oh man, it's awesome. We've got a great defense. Last week, they shut out the Colts and did a great job with that. We knew coming into this week that they were going to continue that and they did."
(on getting a win for QB Case Keenum after the loses last season) "Yeah, we knew Case was a tough guy coming in. Once we found out the news about Case coming in, guys were a little happy because they know he's going to give you all that he has out there on the field. He's not going to leave anything out there."
(on WR Andre Johnson reaching 1,000 receptions for his career and if he's talked to him yet) "Yeah, I did. Words can't express how happy I am for this guy and what he has done for this organization. He deserves everything that he gets and more."
(on how QB Case Keenum was in the huddle) "I worked with Case in training camp and preseason, so we built a little chemistry. Nothing changed once he got in the game."
(on if he ever thought the team was out of the playoff race) "No, not with this team. We always feel like we're in it. Even up until next week."
CORNERBACK KAREEM JACKSON(Transcribed by Laci Theriot)
(on the key of winning the last two games) "Just us keeping game plan. You know, there are some things that we wanted to do coming into the last two games. We definitely started off with front seven, those guys were able to get pressure last week and also today, so you know, that definitely helped us in the backend,. For us to be able to translate games from the practice field to the game field, they are just testing us to know how hard we work as a defense."
(on how much credit Romeo Crennel deserves for the way the team has been playing) "A lot of credit. He definitely has put us in good situations defensively, you know, and we were able to make some plays. Like I said, he definitely deserves a lot of credit."
(on the key of stopping the Ravens' rushing) "Week in and week out we definitely pride ourselves on stopping the run first. The guys up front did a great job of that, you know. They have a really good back and forth set. Those in that line are definitely tough, and that's what they want to do, you know. Their game plan is to run the ball, and looking at their passing game and going off of that so, you know, the guys up front did a great job of stopping the run."
(on the pressure on the team with the recent quarterback injuries and changes) "I don't think there was any pressure on us, you know. Defensively, we want to go out and perform, regardless if it's the first quarterback or the third, fourth. For us, it didn't matter, you know. Case (Keenum) stepped in and did a great job today. It's just a testament of him being a good quarterback. Coming in this weekend, kicking into offense, and he definitely led us out there. For us defensively, we want to definitely go out there and play a good game for him and not add any pressure on him."
(on his respect for RB Arian Foster) "I have a lot of respect for Arian. You know, he is one of the most versatile guys in the NFL, so a guy like that, he can go out and can catch the ball. We all know he can run the ball. For him to be able to create plays and create mismatches for the offense, that's a great thing for us. Like I said, the guy works hard, he definitely takes pride of what he does, and it shows on Sunday."
(on if QB Joe Flacco and the Ravens' offense felt frustrated today) "I'm not sure if they were frustrated. But for us, we definitely wanted to apply pressure early. Get to him and kind of ruffle his feathers. I think we did a great job of that early on. The front seven were definitely in his face throughout the course of the game. For us to hit him and knock him down a little bit, the secondary definitely wanted to get him off his first read. For us, anytime we can cover the quarterback's first read, we know that our front seven will definitely get there."
(on how he feels about beating a 9-5 team so forcefully) "Just us taking pride in playing defensive. Week in and week out, we want to go out and we want to perform like that. For us to perform like that in front of our home crowd. Like I said, we definitely wanted to help Case out. You know, he did a great job, but defensively, that's what we want to do week in and week out. For us to go out and play like that, just shows what type of a defensive that we are.'
(on his performance and DE J.J. Watt's performance today) "For me, a couple things I saw on film, and I was able to translate it to the game today and make some plays. Like I said, defensively, that's what we want to do any time we get a chance to make some plays. We definitely want to go out and do that, and I was able to make a couple today. As for JJ man, that guy is unbelievable. He does it on both sides of the ball. For us as a secondary, we know if we are close to the receivers in that first read, we know he is definitely going to get there along with the other guys up front, but that guy is just unbelievable and it shows every Sunday."
(on how the defense handled WR Steve Smith) "Definitely. Like I said, for us, if we feel that we are close in coverage and we can make quarterback hold the ball, the front seven will definitely get there. For us to be able to contain him, you know, the explosive receiver that he is, like I said, it just shows how hard we work."
(on the plan for TE Owen Daniels) "We just wanted to be physical with him all day. I think we were able to be physical with all the receivers. Owen Daniels, he is definitely a veteran crafty guy. He can definitely get open. A quarterback like Joe Flacco, he will definitely find him, so for us, we just wanted to be physical with those guys and definitely be close in coverage."
(on if knowing Gary Kubiak's offense helped their performance) "I wouldn't say us knowing his offense. I just think it shows how hard we work, week in and week out. For us to watch film all week, paying attention to the little details, and kind of get some keys during the week as far as watching film and things like that, you know, definitely helped us today."
(on if this has been the best secondary since he was been here in Houston) "I would say so. As a secondary, for us, like I said, we work hard to be one of the best in the NFL. Week in and week out, we want to prove that we definitely can go out and we can make plays, we can kick balls off, and be labeled as a possible shutdown secondary. Like I said, for us to pay attention to little details, if we definitely do our job, we can definitely pull together performances like that."
WIDE RECIEVER ANDRE JOHNSON(Transcribed by John Byczek)
(on getting a win with QB Case Keenum, the fourth QB of the year) "It was big. It shows a lot about our team, the group of guys we have in the locker room. I think if any other team was in this situation they probably would've just threw in the towel but to come out and play the way we played against a very good football team who had a lot on the line today, it was big. It was a big win for us today."
(on being extra physical today) "It was a very physical game. We knew they were a very physical team. We knew in order to beat them we would have to out-physical them. It was a big win today. Like I said before, I think anybody else in our situation would have probably threw in the towel but we got the job done."
(on getting his 1,000th reception at home) "When it was coming up and people started talking about it, I always said I wanted to do it. You would like to do it fast and be the fastest person to do it, but I said it would be special to do it at home. Unfortunately, I had to go through a concussion and stuff but it worked out that I could do it at home. It was just special to do it here because we have fans that have been riding with us for a long time and I've been here to experience a lot of the things that have went on with this organization. It was just fun to do it here."
(on still having playoff chances) "As long as you're alive, anything can happen. We have to hold up our end of the bargain by winning. We have a game left, we have to go out and do everything we can, try to get a win. We'll rally behind Case (Keenum) like we did today, go out there and keep fighting."
(on QB Case Keenum's game) "I don't really think words can describe it. You have a guy come in, you practice for three days, a lot is thrown at him and the guy goes out there and handles it. He handles it like he's been here all year. We missed some plays here and there, we had some mistakes, but you have to commend him, man. He played big. For him to come home and do that, to be put in this situation, and come back home and do that, it was an awesome feeling. He was pretty happy."
(on connecting with QB Case Keenum from the start) "The crazy thing, when the play was called and I saw the coverage, I knew he was about to throw it to me. I spent some time with Case (Keenum), so I think that has helped, even though he just came in last week. You can kind of anticipate some things just from being with him before. You can kind of know his style. I wasn't surprised when he threw that ball on the first play of the game."
(on what getting 1,000 receptions means to him) "It puts you in an elite group. I tell people I never thought I would be in this situation. You can say everything you want when you first come in the league about how good you want to be but you have to go out there and play and put the numbers up and things like that. It's crazy, man. I don't think it really has set in. I think once I sit down one day and really think about what I've been able to accomplish as a player it will really set in."
(on QB Case Keenum getting first NFL win) "It was big. It was real big. Like I said, the way he played, it was awesome for him to come in and do what he did. It was big. The guys rallied behind him. The guys were really excited. Case is full of a lot of energy. I'm just happy for him that he was able to come home and get his first win."
(on how coach O'Brien and staff have worked the team with all of the injuries) "I think he's done a great job. I think the coaching staff, period, has done a great job. We have a great group of coaches. They understand the game. They help the players understand what they're trying to do. They do a great job of preparing us every week and breaking things down of the opponents. It's a good group of guys and I like being a part of them."
(on coach O'Brien's pregame speech) "I don't know, man. If you weren't ready to play before the game, that definitely got your juices going. I thought he was going to flip the podium over or something. It was a good speech and the guys responded to it."
QUARTERBACK CASE KEENUM(Transcribed by Charles Hampton and Ellie Pardee)
(on what he post game speech to his teammates was like) "You know, I guess first of all I want to start off just saying, I really today have to first and foremost thank my savior Jesus Christ and God. I don't say that lightly, I want that to be the first thing out of my mouth today. God's had a plan for my life for a long time, it's not a coincidence about him guiding me, so I'm extremely thankful to him. I want to make sure that he gets all the glory today. I'm just a pulp sometimes and leaning on him, leaning on God for that sort of stuff. But yeah, today was special man. First of all, the defense played incredible. That's the best defense I've ever seen. The guys around me on offense, that was a lot of fun playing. We had a great plan; the coaches did an incredible job of getting us all ready to go. It was fun. I thought we played well and made the right plays to win. What was that, three turnovers for the defense? That was pretty incredible. After the game I just told the guys, especially the guys that had been around last year, how special, how much this means to me and that I love them."
(on what he was doing when he got the call from the Texans) "I was in a tree with a bow in my hand, hunting white-tail deer out in a field about 30 minutes outside of Missouri. My wife was texting me actually during the Texans game that Ryan (Fitzpatrick) had gotten hurt and that Tom (Savage) was in there and Shane (Lechler) was warming up. I got a call from my agent and my heart kind of jumped a little bit, and it's been pretty wild since then."
(on being away from football when he found out) "Yeah, we had been away on Thursday and had the weekend off, so I was trying to get a few hunts in, and I got one or two but that one was pretty unsuccessful because I was hunting the whole time. I really didn't care, there probably could have been a 20-pointer walking up and I would have tried, but there were more important things going on at that point."
(on how it felt to walk off the field a winner for the first time as a Texan) "Like I said on the field, I really can't put words on it, man. It's very special. Somebody's told me before that when you don't win, that's what makes winning that much more sweet. It's very sweet. It feels really, really good."
(on what it was like to play against his former coach Gary Kubiak) "Yeah, as far as playing against Kub, it really didn't matter who it was against today. I didn't think about that, but playing with my guys that I've put a lot of time in with, you know training camp and offseason, that was really special. It meant a lot. Pretty much the whole o-line that I played with, Andre (Johnson), DeAndre (Hopkins), Arian (Foster), seeing the defense lining up like that today was pretty fun too."
(on how difficult it was to come in and learn the offense and the protection from the offensive line) "I think, someone told me a stat that we didn't have a sack today which was pretty incredible considering the front that Baltimore has and the talent those guys have up there. I don't remember your question, but it was really pretty incredible protection that we had today, offensive line played incredible." (on picking up the offense for the second time) "I compared it to taking a couple years of Spanish and if you were to ask me how to say whatever, I wouldn't be able to tell you, but when you go through and review it again, it comes back. A lot of stuff came back after I reviewed it and went over it again. We had a great gameplan and the coaches did a heck of a job getting us all ready to go."
(on if he almost ever called any St. Louis plays) "No, I didn't."
(on what he was most comfortable with and least comfortable with) "I was comfortable with the offense. If I wasn't comfortable, the coaches, I told them I wasn't comfortable with it and we didn't run it. Every play we ran, I felt good about what was called."
(on RB Arian Foster saying that Keenum was very emotional after the game) "I'm not the best with me words, so I couldn't really put it all into words how special it was to me. I know Arian said that he was going to punch me if I cried. No, it means a lot. It's fun. I love to win. To do it, in the way that it all happened, I go back to God. He's got a perfect plan and it's a plan to prosper. I think winning is just kind of a byproduct of how hard we worked. Just being here and playing a game, I'm extremely blessed and honored to be able to do that."
(on if this was the best football moment of his career) "It's close, if it's not. It feels really good. It does. I've said it before, I've represented the city of Houston for I don't know how many years and how many games—I know it was 50-something in college and now nine here—I love doing it. I love the fans. It's been good.
(on if he ever imagined he would be back here when he was with the St. Louis Rams) "I've wondered. When Ryan (Mallett) got hurt, I was kind of wondering. But when that didn't happen, I kind of was like, 'OK, no. It is what it is,' so I kind of put it out of my mind."
(on if he felt the team could've executed better in the red zone) "Yeah, you have to give Baltimore credit. They had a heck of a plan down there. But yeah, I like scoring touchdowns. I think Randy (Bullock) was awesome today, but I want to score touchdowns. I'd rather score touchdowns. We definitely need to capitalize on more of those opportunities with the defense getting all those turnovers, especially down there in the red zone."
(on if he had any input into the offensive gameplan this week) "The coaches, we were in constant communication with what we thought, what the plan of attack was and how we were going to do it. Like I said, if I wasn't comfortable with something, they weren't going to run it. We still had an offensive plan and we were able to execute it."
(on Bill O'Brien's pregame speech) "I got fired up. I was fired up. That's probably the most I've been fired up in a long time. I didn't even need it. I was pretty jacked up from the get-go. He brought it to another level."
FREE SAFETY KENDRICK LEWIS(Transcribed by Omar Majzoub)
(on what the defense did to stop the Ravens offense) "It's just our front seven. Coach (Romeo Crennel) wanted us to play tight coverage and let our front seven cut loose. That's what we did. We were trying to be in those guys hip pocket every step of the way and everywhere they went. Our front seven applied pressure on (Joe) Flacco the whole day."
(on the job Defensive Coordinator Romeo Crennel did) "Oh, he did an unbelievable job. He saw our pressure was working and he kept it. He kept it going. Our front seven was rushing and our blitzes were working. We were covering and giving these guys no outlets."
(on if he thought the pressure would bother Ravens QB Joe Flacco) "Honestly, I saw it in the game getting to him, but coming into the game I didn't think that our pressure was going to work like it did today. Our front seven was unbelievable. We were able to get three interceptions. He was lobbing it up and we were taking it down. Jack (Kareem Jackson) had two. A.J. (Bouye) caught one. I dropped one, so everything was working."
(on stopping the run all game) "It was big. Coach (Romeo Crennel) wanted us to make those guys one-dimensional and that's what we did. Just like I said, our front seven, they stopped the run. They rushed the passer when it was time to rush the passer. They made our job much easier on the back end."
(on what it was like playing with the lead most of the day) "Oh, it was unbelievable, man. It was unbelievable, man. We were ahead in the down. We won on first and second down. It made our job on third down much easier. We won the third down battle against those guys. It was an unbelievable team effort today."
(on if the Ravens were frustrated) "Yes. Yes, those guys seemed frustrated. Balls were sailing on them. They had their head down and shaking their head. They gave us bad posture. We just kept the pressure on those guys and kept it going."
(on the fact they are still in the playoff hunt) "Oh, that's what coach said. At one point of the season, we said we got seven one-game seasons. This is the one to close it out. We came in here and protected our house like we were supposed to do to stay alive. We have one more. We're going to come here this week and work to pull this victory off for the team and let the chips fall where they may."
(on if the defense felt more pressure coming into this game with the injuries at quarterback) "No, but we knew we had to play big today. We knew we had to step up and help our quarterback out. He just got in here this week and we wanted to help him out as much as possible. Forcing those turnovers was big for him. It gives him short fields and things like that. It was complimentary football and unbelievable kicking with (Randy) Bullock and (Shane) Lechler. Those guys did an unbelievable job and kept us in great field position to allow us to make those plays all game."
(on how he feels about this season and still being in the playoffs) "It's played out great. It just shows the type of team we have. It shows the type of guys that we have in this locker room, the coaching staff and things like that. It shows that we are all in it for the same reason. We compete until there's no more competing out there. We just keep it going. No matter who is out, it's the next man's turn. We've been doing a great job all season of the next man stepping up and not skipping a beat."
(on if he is excited because it's the best win all season) "I wouldn't say the best victory, but I believe that we came out and executed the game plan. We executed what coach wanted us to do throughout the whole game. We didn't let up on those guys not one bit. I tip my hat to the team. We did an unbelievable job today."
STRONG SAFETY DANIEAL MANNING(Transcribed by Trevor Caswell)
(on continually pressuring QB Joe Flacco) "We had a couple of blitz packages that RAC (Romeo Crennel) drew up that they were having a hard time picking up. I think one time, they picked it up and they ended up scoring on a screen, but for the most part, it was a great defensive effort we had out there."
(on whether momentum will grow out of today's win) "It does, I think it started last week and we've started building on it. We've been doing that every day in practice, we've had a lot of energy, and guys were eager to make plays and were trying to get turnovers. We're just trying to play together as a team, we know that and it shows."
(on getting the win for QB Case Keenum) "I haven't thought about it in that way. I know this is his first NFL win and I think we had some sense of rallying around him. He just came off the street for us and really didn't have a chance to develop in this offensive scheme and I think he did a great job. We knew on defense and on special teams that we had to step up for him."
(on thinking about the playoffs) "Personally, I'm thinking about it because that's why I play. You play to get into the playoffs. Yes, we know we still have a chance and the percentages, but all we can do is control what we can, that's going out and getting the win and that's what we did."
CENTER CHRIS MYERS(Transcribed by Edgar Veliz)
(on the significance of the victory) "It is a huge win against a quality opponent who is fighting to get in to the playoffs, as we are. To be able to come in here and establish ourselves, it wasn't pretty by any means in terms of offense. I think the defense played out of their mind today, so hats off to them and hats off to Baltimore. They gave us a lot of fits on offense but we were able to keep plugging. We have to put touchdowns on the board in the red zone. Which we didn't do but Randy (Bullock) kind of pulled it out for us with a bunch of field goals and that's what we need, complimentary football."
(on QB Case Keenum's performance) "It was huge. To see that guy, we definitely missed him, to see him and what he went through with St. Louis and come here in a week, or less than that, and be able to put together the performance he did today speaks a lot about his character and his dedication. He was in here a lot of hours this week. To be able to grind back and master the offense again and be able to get the win, a huge tip of the hat to him, congrats."
(on the defense's performance) "It is so fun to watch. To watch our defense give it a go and get turnovers on a consistent basis like that, to be able to have 30 yards at halftime or whatever it was, it just doesn't happen a lot. So, you have to be able to enjoy it while it lasts and take it in because they are playing really well right now."
(on QB Case Keenum's grasp of the offense and the running game) "As players we just need to keep grinding. There were some one-yard runs and two-yard runs and four-yard runs and then Arian (Foster) breaks out with a nice 30-yarder or 40-yarder or whatever it was and that is what we have to do. As an offensive line you just have to grind. This is one of those old-school grind-it-out games. Case just ran the offense really well today."
(on QB Case Keenum's confidence after his first series) "You would have to ask him. I can't say it did or didn't bode well for his confidence. Also, having Andre Johnson out there helps out with that. He was used to that last year, a little bit."
TACKLE DEREK NEWTON(Transcribed by Edgar Veliz)
(on preparing for the Baltimore defense) "Coach gave us the game plan and this week of practice was pretty good. So all we had to do today was execute. We did a pretty good job."
(on what changed after Tyson Clabo entered the game) "It didn't change at all because I had Chris (Myers) to my left and Tyson (Clabo) to my right, two vets, so I was good. As long as we were communicating I was good."
(on the change in angles at the guard position) "It was definitely tighter but it was the next man up. I just had to go out there and play."
(on Case Keenum's performance) "It was great. Case came in Sunday night or Monday. He came in, got everything down, packed the game plan so for him to come in and get everything down it was only right that we rally around him. Give him a chance to make plays and he came on and did a good job."
(on the biggest challenge when he switched to offensive guard) "I couldn't think that I was at tackle. Everything was tight so I had to shorten down my sets and stuff like that, landmarks."
(on not giving up a sack to the Baltimore defense) "It is all about confidence. Like I said, we had a great week of practice and a great week of film. So it is just about coming in a putting it together on Sundays."
(on the play of the defense) "The defense played a hell of a game. Special teams contributed as well. We feed off each other. Defense got a turnover, we went out there and scored. Special teams made a nice play so it was all great ball on all three teams."
(on his first thought as he switched position) "It is going to be fun. Coach always gives us the philosophy of next man up. So, when Brandon (Brooks) went down, it was tough. At the same time coach told me to go to right guard, so it is only right that I go out there and give it my all."
(on the difference between week 17 this year and week 17 last year) "It is great. We got a chance to do something good here. Our whole mentality is to win out and wait and see what happens. So we are going to continue to be positive about everything, come in and watch film, practice good and come play on Sunday."
NOSE TACKLE RYAN PICKETT(Transcribed by Stephanie Weaver)
(on how the defense played today) "Defense is playing lights out. That's the way we've been building up to play all year, and now we are putting it together."
(on how the defense forced turnovers) "Exactly. We've got the players back there to make plays. You get pressure on the quarterback and that leads to bad decisions. You know, my boys, when they get their hands on the ball, they make the plays."
(on if he saw QB Joe Flacco get flustered) "I mean it's tough. It's tough playing our defense. The boys up front, when it's called a pass rush, they get up after the passer, and then we play real tight coverage in the back. I mean, our guys, they can cover them. We've got ball hawks right there. It makes life tough for a quarterback."
(on the play of DE Jared Crick) "Crick he's been playing, some of his best ball has been the last couple weeks. He's really elevated his game the last couple weeks. So he's been playing great."
(on what the defense did today to stop the run) "I mean, we just you know, we came out early. We knew they were going to come out early and try to hit us in the mouth. You know, they pride themselves in being a physical team. We just took the challenge and said we're going to be more physical than them up front. We did that, then we got them behind the chains, and then they had to abandon the run early. We just came out. We just played with passion, and you know, we stopped the run."
(on if they can start thinking about playoffs) "We don't even talk about it. We just talk about beating the next team. (Bill O'Brien) didn't mention the playoffs this week. He mentioned beating Baltimore, and the same thing just now. You know, tomorrow we're coming in, watching this film, and getting things that need to be corrected then we're moving on to Jacksonville. I have no idea if we even have a shot. We don't talk about it. We just talk about the next opponent."
SAFETY DJ SWEARINGER(Transcribed by Trevor Caswell)
(on defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel's gameplan) "It was incredible. We had a certain blitz that they couldn't stop and I thought it was crazy how they couldn't stop it. It was a great job by our defensive staff, they did a great job of dialing up the blitzes."
(on being confident that the blitzes would work) "Anytime we have blitzes, we think they're going to get there, but the way they did today was kind of shocking. We just kept calling the same type of blitzes and they kept working, so it was an incredible job by Romeo and by our front seven to stay on those guys and keep it going."
(on seeing that the Ravens weren't ready for the team's intensity) "We saw that from the first drive. We hit them in the mouth early and it shocked them a little bit. It worked and we stayed on it on both sides of the ball and on special teams. I think we did a great job of playing smash mouth football."
(on the tie between the last two games) "We're just gelling together. All eleven of us are playing as one sound unit, everybody is looking good together, and communication has been big. Everybody is on the same page and has the mindset that we have to get the turnover."
(on being alive for the playoffs) "It's incredible, especially coming from last year, losing 14 straight and knowing that you're out of it. Just taking care of business one game at a time and knowing that you may get in there is good."
(on head coach Bill O'Brien's pre-game speech) "We love a coach that wants to win just as much as we do and is fired up just as much as we are."
DEFENSIVE END J.J. WATT(Transcribed by Hannah Pietsch and Rachel Jacob)
(on today's game plan and how it worked) "I think it worked very well. I think they did a great job putting together something they thought would be successful. And, what we were able to do today on the defensive side of the ball was pretty special. I think it was a lot of fun to get everybody involved, everybody making plays, you never know where the next play is coming from. That's really when you're clicking, and it's a blast on defense. It was pretty cool."
(on the win today with everything that has happened this week) "I think if you'd told people all week that we were going to sign a guy on Monday and he was going to come in and we were going to win the football game on Sunday, technically, a fourth string quarterback, and everyone kind of thinking the other team was going to win and nobody really giving us a chance – it's pretty special. I think it's a testament to our team. It's a testament to the coaching staff, to the guys we have. It was fun. Days like today are just, they're a blast."
(on how physical the defense played today and the effect it had on the game) "It's something that we talked about all week. They're a very good football team. They're a physical football team. They're a tough football team, but we're no slouch ourselves. We're not going to let somebody come into our house and just try to walk all over us. I think that we did a great job today. I think that they're a very good team. I think that they're going to continue to have success, but we played very well today."
(on the injury to his nose) "It kind of feels like I got hit in the face with a sledgehammer. It is very painful. I've got a couple of stitches in there. Our medical staff did a great job. I'm not a hundred percent sure how it happened, but I think I hit one of their players and my helmet kind of, last year it always popped down, and this time it popped up and kind of messed my nose up a bit and tore this thing open. It's alright though. Everything feels better after a win, so I don't feel it too much. Tomorrow morning, I'll probably feel it though. Get some Advil maybe?"
(on how the defensive seemed to click today) "I think our defense is doing a great job now playing together - everybody going out there and doing their job and coaches putting together a great plan. When you have a new staff in place it takes a little bit of time to get everybody on the same page and get an understanding of what you want to accomplish and I think that we are doing a good job of it right now. Obviously we want to go out there again next week and do a good job and play another game like today.
(on being the career sacks leader for the Texans) "Yeah it is pretty cool. It is pretty neat to think sometimes that it is still early on in my career and there are some exciting things left that I would like to accomplish. I have to give a lot of credit to my teammates and my coaches because a lot of those sacks are because of them. They deserve a lot of credit. I've got coaches that have put me in good positions, teaching me the right things. It is pretty special though. I've had some great memories with this organization already so far and so I am going to create a lot better, a lot more memories down the road.
(on Coach Bill O'Brien and how much credit he deserves) "He deserves a whole lot of credit, he has done a great job. He is a heck of a football coach; he is a great guy that I enjoy playing for. you go out there every day and is working just as hard as you so you want to go out there and work your butt off for him. He is energetic, he is passionate. I mean look at the situation he is in. He is on a fourth string quarterback they just signed on Monday and he got his team to go out there and put together a performance against a very good football team and I think that speaks volumes to him as a football coach, to him as a man. It is pretty special. He'll never take any credit. He'll say he doesn't deserve any credit, but he deserves a whole lot of credit and he should be given that credit."
(on meeting Dikembe Mutombo before the game) "That was pretty special, to get to see him. He is the original. He is the man, so pretty special to share that moment with him. He is a great guy. I mean I can' t get over that voice, he cracks me up. Then got the chance to see Lyle Lovett before the game too so that was pretty cool, so it was kind of like one big Houston family out there. It was pretty fun. It was pretty cool."
(on Dikembe Mutombo giving J.J. Watt the 'formula') "He is the original. He deserves all the credit for it. He did ask for royalties and I said I don't know if I can make that happen. But he is a pretty special guy. He is huge too! I told him I've got to walk away from you bro, you're kind of killing my confidence here. I was looking at him like 'Oh my God!". (J.J. Watt imitating Dikembe Mutombo's voice) "Hey! How you doing? No, no, no." It was pretty cool though, to have the man give you 'the wave', it was pretty darn special. Oh, I kind of sounded like the Cookie Monster. He's the man, he's the man. Dikembe's the man."
POSTGAME QUOTES FROM BALTIMORE RAVENS
HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH
TE OWEN DANIELS
QB JOE FLACCO
WR STEVE SMITH
WR TORREY SMITH
HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH(Transcribed by Stephanie Weaver)
"OK, I appreciate you guys coming down here. Obviously tough loss, very disappointing. Hand it to their defense, they dominated the game. That's the story of the game. They dominated the game really from the beginning to the end. That doesn't mean that our guys didn't fight, compete, and try like crazy, but we couldn't get anything going offensively and I believe that's the story of the game."
(on possible injury to QB Joe Flacco) "Not that was reported to me. I have no information on that. Nothing was said to me by the trainers, but we'll find out if there is something. He was fine in the locker room just now."
(on why the Houston Texans defense played so well against the Ravens' offense) "Not really, I just thought they played really well up front. They did a great job up front. Every one of their guys played well. Good game plan by Romeo (Crennel). Timed up their pressures really well. I thought they were hitting the line of scrimmage really well with their pressures, and that was tough on us. Joe was under duress all day. It wasn't just that, they won some one-on-one battles and all that as far as pass rush. We weren't really clearing them, as far as coverage. They just did a great job."
(on DE J.J. Watt's performance) "I think Watt's a great player. There's really nothing add to that. He just played like he always plays."
(on possible injuries to RB Justin Forsett and offensive tackles) "Nothing I want to share right now. We'll just see how the guys come out of it and see where we're at."
(on the performance of the defense) "I'd agree with that. I thought they played well enough to win. It doesn't really matter. Everybody played hard. We had different degrees of success obviously, about as dramatic as you can have, but everybody played their hearts out, and it was obviously not good enough. But our defense, I thought, played well. I thought our special teams played well. Short fields, the sudden change was outstanding. They did a great job forcing the field goals. You've got to give them a lot of credit. They never cracked in that sense emotionally, team-wise. All those things were there. And that's what I'm excited about going forward. The thing that we lost was control of our destiny, that's tough because when you've got control, when you can win out and make the playoffs, that's a valuable thing. I don't think we have that anymore, but we do have an opportunity to win next week. And that's the opportunity we need to take and seize it. I told the guys in the locker room I said, 'When we leave this locker room, anything we don't need stays here. We're only taking back with us what we can use to go play, compete, and beat the Cleveland Browns. Period. Anything else we don't need, we're not taking with us.' So, you know, I guess from a media standpoint, we can look back, and look at this game and say, 'What went wrong?", and all that and point fingers, but we're not going to do that. We just don't have time for that. We have to go win this next game We have to leave everything here that is baggage. Everything we need that we can learn from, we'll take with us. We'll fight like crazy next week and try to win a tough ACF North game in our stadium."
(on if there was any indication from practice this week on how the game would go today) "No, I thought we practiced well as a matter of fact. I thought the execution was good. We knew what we were doing in practice. Maybe one ball hit the ground on Thursday and Friday. We practiced well, so you can hand it to Houston on this one. They played at another level. It's a heck of a team. I said it earlier in the week, extremely talented. I don't know why, you know, whatever has happened during their season. I haven't studied it like that, but they've got a heck of a football team. The kid played great. Keenum came in, I mean, it's pretty amazing what he did as far as handling the offense, so that's just the way it was."
TIGHT END OWEN DANIELS(Transcribed by ReShun Gilmore)
(on coming back) "It wasn't ideal, you know? It was an experience to be back here. I thought it was going to be pretty weird and it was. Coming to this locker room and going a different way through the tunnel and being on a different sideline and all that stuff. It was great seeing guys and Mr. McNair came up to me after the game which was awesome. So, it was cool to be back but obviously not the end result that we wanted."
(on the offensive game plan) "Sputtered is an understatement. We really couldn't do anything. We turned the ball over obviously in our own territory a couple of times and that didn't help. We just couldn't get in sync doing anything like throwing the ball and running the ball. Texans have a really good defense. We knew that coming in. We just didn't make any plays down the field or doing anything to keep drives alive."
(on what DE JJ Watt said to him) "Honestly, I think he was pretty quiet out there. I didn't hear him barking at all. I said hi to all the guys out there. I naturally said what's up in passing. It was good to see those guys."
(on if Gary Kubiak pointed out how the importance of winning this game) "No. He's always going to downplay it. It's really important for us as a team. We were looking at this as a playoff game to keep everything in our control in terms of going to the playoffs and keeping our division title hopes alive. That was the message during the week. It wasn't coming back here or anything like that. Definitely downplayed that."
QUARTERBACK JOE FLACCO(Transcribed by Ryan Cantrell)
(on if he was injured or in pain throughout the game) "I was not injured. There was one time when I was trying to buckle my shoulder pad, maybe that is what you saw."
(on having a loss like this late in the season) "I mean we got our ass kicked. It's really simple. We did a lot of things not very well."
(on the defense and the play of J.J. Watt) "As a defensive line and unit they played well together. It's tough to really feel one guy. I know at the end of the game, I felt him a bit. It felt like I was getting hit in the back every time I let go of a pass, but that's the name of the game. He's a good player. For the most part they didn't get to us, but they created a lot of havoc and caused a lot of disruption."
(on what did they do in the first half that caused so many problems) "The biggest thing was that they brought pressure up the middle, where some of our protection is weak. They were able to get me on my back foot and force us hot. We never really got anything going and couldn't get into a groove of any kind. We couldn't move the ball, couldn't make any first downs, couldn't get any completions. We just couldn't get ourselves going, and it just wasn't good."
(on no longer controlling their own destiny to the playoffs) "We've been in this situation last year, where we didn't really control our own destiny, and we didn't play well. All we can control is going out there next week against Cleveland and winning a football game. I am not sure what all else has to happen, but the bottom line is that we have to go out there and win a game."
(on Ravens Running Back Justin Forsett not finishing the game) "I know we had some guys that got beat up out there at the end of the game. I don't really know what happened, so we will just have to wait to hear something."
(on the play of Texans CB Kareem Jackson) "The one he undercut for an interception, he made a nice play and catch there. On the other one, it hit him right in the chest there, so I would hope he would pick that one. That's the way it goes, he played well creating turnovers that got them in position to score. You have to tip your hat to him."
(on his emotions for this loss) "Like I said earlier, we just got whopped man. There's no other way about it. Our defense played well. Our special teams played well, and we didn't do a single thing on offense. We just got beat up and whooped. It's part of being a NFL football player; being able to take this sometimes and move on."
(on his concern for the way the offense has played recently) "Well obviously you aren't happy about it. Last week we were able to do what we needed to do to win the football game, but this week we were not. Not happy about it, but it's a little too late at this point. We just need to get back in there and do the best we can for next week."
(on his inaccuracy this week as compared to the last few weeks) "They did a lot of things today. They did some things up front that got me on my back foot. They had good coverage and took away the main guys. They were disruptive and got me off my spot. Nothing came easy today. There wasn't anything that was just like boom, give me, give me, give me. Everything we were we had to go take it and earn it, and it was like that for the full 60 minutes. It was tough."
(on the running game not performing well) "Well I think that is just part of it. Part of it was getting me off the spot and then part of it was them stopping the run. That just shows that they were playing well up front. If we are not getting our running game going, it is going to affect us. Our running game wasn't working though for a reason. They were playing physical and they were playing well up there."
(on if Gary Kubiak gave any indication on coming back to Houston) "No, he did not. Just by looking at Gary or listening to Gary, you wouldn't of known that he had anything to do with Houston in the past. We have all been in situations similar to that, so we can understand what it means. It is a credit to Gary to not really ever bring that up."
WIDE RECEIVER STEVE SMITH SR.(Transcribed by Lance Jaramillo)
(on CBs Kareem Jackson and Johnathan Joseph) "Johnathan's been in the league a long time. The other guy hasn't been in the league that long, has he? (4 or 5 years) That's not very long. They play a lot of zone coverage. JJ (Watt) has always been good; he's a great player and I respect the heck out of him. He plays a mixture of coverages and he's very savvy and smart. Nothing I haven't seen in 14 years so I'll be alright."
(on how the team bounces back from today's loss) "You don't have a choice; you've got to. We got a big week next week—last game of the season. It's make or break and it says everything. We don't really have a choice to sit around and analyze it and woe is me and come up with excuses. Bottom line is offensively we just got our ass kicked. Hate to say it that way but that's what happened. That's what the score looks like and that's what it looks like when you just lose. That is the consequences of losing. We expect and understand the negative feedback, all the fat, lazy, sorry, couch quarterbacks that are going to come out. We expect that, understand that and we're not going to pay attention to it."
WIDE RECEIVER TORREY SMITH(Transcribed by ReShun Gilmore)
(on what happened on his injury) "I just started cramping a few plays before then that was kind of off and on. When I was running, it happens."
(on what seemed to go wrong on offense) "Execution. We weren't on the same page at any level. We didn't make the plays when they were there. We made things tough on ourselves and it was too tough a hole to dig out of."
(on if the pressure threw the rhythm off offensively) "It's only so many things you can do when you're being pressured. The things that we did have, we weren't hitting. So, we were just killing ourselves."
(on the focus going into the last game with playoff implications on the line) "It's terrible. It's a must win game. You can say this one was, but I mean we have no control. So we have to win and I don't know what the scenario is. We have to win and hope folks lose. It's not a real good feeling. We have a tough game ahead and Cleveland is a great team. We have to pull it off and hope we get a good Christmas present."
(on if he is shocked by this performance) "I mean y'all saw the stats on their defense. No pushover by any means. They did a great job. Our defense played one hell of game, special teams as well. We blew this one on offense. It's no other way to look at it. It was our execution and we turned the ball over when we hadn't turned the ball over. One of them was complete. My fault and I sucked on the route. I owe Joe (Flacco) for that one and we just were not ourselves and we were not executing."