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Quotes: Thursday Practice


Head Coach Bill O'Brien** WR DeAndre Hopkins
WR Andre Johnson
G Ben Jones
C Chris Myers
DE J.J. Watt

Head Coach Bill O'Brien
(on having military service men and women at practice today) "It's an honor to have them at practice. What they do, what they mean to this country, obviously over the last 10 to 15 years what they've meant to this country, anytime you can reach out to them and show them respect and show them how much they mean to you, I think it's an important part of our job. A couple of those people said thank you and they kept thanking us, thanking our players, especially thanking me when I stepped over there. And really it's all about thanking them. Thanking them for their service to this country."

(on RB Arian Foster's injury status) "I'd say that it's something we're going to have to see right up until game time."

(on if RB Arian Foster suffered a setback) "No setback. Not setback, just really is from one day to the next we'll see how he's doing. I'm sure we'll have to make a decision on game day. It's just one of those things. It's just something we have to wait it out and see if gets better."

(on the type of player RB Jonathan Grimes is) "Grimes, he's one of those guys, I would describe him this way. First of all, he's a very bright guy. He's a really good guy, good teammate and he's playing role very well. So, what is his role? He's a special teams guy. He's made a bunch of tackles. He's blocked well on the punt when we've asked him to do that as a wing. He's gotten his carries, obviously against Cleveland he went in there and spelled (Alfred) Blue, helped us on third downs, had a couple of big runs for us, kept drives going, so to me he's a guy who's really embraced his role. Those are the types of guys that we're really looking for here, guys that really understand their role and embrace it."

(on the challenges Bengals CB Adam 'Pacman' Jones provides in the return game) "This guy can really return kicks, ever since he's been in the league. I can remember when I was in college coaching against him at West Virginia, he's a dynamic player. He's got explosive speed. He's got an ability to make a cut at full speed and make a guy miss. He has a great knack for understanding the setup of the return whether it's a wall return or it's a middle wedge and where the cut is. He's just got great instincts for a returner and it's a great challenge for our kickoff coverage team and our punt team."

WR DeAndre Hopkins
(on what the feeling around the team is) "We're really not worried about last week's win. It's

behind us. We're focused on Cincinnati right now, but everybody's spirits in here are high. We're coming out and we know we've got a big test ahead of us. Right now, everybody is focused on their job and coming out and having a productive practice."

(on the challenges Cincinnati's secondary presents) "There are a very athletic secondary from what I've seen. They make plays. They got a mix of everything, size and speed out there. They have a combination of a little bit of everything. They do a great job of disguising their defenses, keeping us off our balance. It's going to be a good test for us. That's a good secondary we're going against."

(on defenses starting to key on him) "I'm just coming out and doing what I do. I'm not really focusing on what they're doing, but do my job and come out every day at practice and try to have a productive practice. Practice makes perfect."

(on the need to take care of business at home in front of the home crowd) "Everybody that comes here that I've talked to—former players that I played with—they talk about how great this atmosphere here is. Just the city, they're behind us all the way, win or lose. This would be a great stepping stone for us to get the city on our back even more."

(on if he feels he can make plays on any part of the field with QB Ryan Mallett under center) "Yeah. The guy has a cannon. It's really nowhere he can't get the ball. As a wide receiver, you just have to be prepared and ready to get it when you don't think you're open."

WR Andre Johnson
(on if the team feels hopeful) "Why shouldn't we? You play to win. I don't think there is a doubt in anybody's mind about what we can do as a team. We just have to put it all together."

(on if he was surprised how calm QB Ryan Mallett was on Sunday) "No. He's been in this offense for a while, so like I said, he knows what to expect and he was just waiting for his opportunity and he got it Sunday and made the best of it."

(on the chemistry between QB Ryan Mallett and his receivers) "I think it will get better with time. We left some plays out there Sunday. We've been working a lot during practice and stuff trying to get our timing and that stuff down. Hopefully it will all work out."

(on QB Ryan Mallett's arm strength) "That's always good when you can have a quarterback that can get into his drops and let the ball go. I think it works out for everybody. It helps the line. It helps the receivers. When you come open the ball is on the way. It helps out."

(on tying Randy Moss for 10th all-time in receptions) "Like I said before, I don't think it, it hasn't set in. I don't feel like I'm 10th all time. I'm still playing. I feel like I have a lot of football left. Once I hang my cleats up, than I think I'll sit down and look back on that and let it all settle in."

G Ben Jones
(on why he felt the o-line had a good game at Cleveland) "We just went out there and did our assignments and tried to be perfect every play. And that is what our goal is each week. That's what we're trying to do this week. We're going to try and come out and do what we're asked to do. If it's a run block, we're going to go out and do that. If it's a pass block, we're going to go out there and protect."

(on what concerns him about Cincinnati) "They've got a great d-line. Every team in the NFL has a good team, but these guys are definitely up field guys. They're really talented and we definitely have our challenge this week. That's like every team in the NFL. They're going to have a good d-line and we'll always have our challenges each week and we have just have to perform."

(on his thoughts of seeing the servicemen come out to practice) "To see those guys come out there to watch us practice and to see what we do, it's just an honor to go out there and try to perform for them at our best. Those guys mean the world to us and what they do. We wouldn't be able to do what we do if they didn't go out and do their jobs. We just want to go out there with open arms, let them come out there and watch us practice and afterwards we can't wait to meet and greet with them."

(on if adds extra buzz to practice having the servicemen out there) "Definitely. You see them over there and it definitely brings a little extra fire because we respect them and what they do. It always is a little extra out there for them. We want to do good for them because I know they really enjoy watching us and we really take the time and enjoy seeing them and just hearing their stories and getting to spend a little bit of time with them at the end."

C Chris Myers
(on the Salute to Service Day) "It stats from the top down. Mr. (Bob) McNair and his wife Janice have always been very generous in the fact that being able to welcome the military in here and be able to pay them the due respect that they deserve. It goes downhill. Coach (Bill) O'Brien is the same way. A lot of the players here do a lot in the community with a lot of service members. Whatever we can do to be able to help out with them is going to be huge in their everyday life."

(on working with military members and the excitement they have) "You definitely notice the difference. I've been getting through our TACT program season tickets for a lot of the men and women through Impact A Hero organization. You tangibly see a difference in their everyday lives when they come out here with their families. You get to meet their kids and they're down underneath after the game. I'm personally able to exchange my phone number with a bunch of them and keep in contact with them outside of football, which is why I enjoy it. And you get to know them on an individual basis. But like I said, I really, really, really tangibly enjoy talking to them about what they do because it's a fair trade with the military and professional athletes and professional athletes and the military. So to be able to be a part of that is really cool."

DE J.J. Watt
(on his thoughts of seeing the servicemen come out to practice) "It's awesome to have them out at practice. It's really cool for them to come out and see practice, and we obviously are all excited about it because we get to have them out. Sometimes I kind of wish they could line up and play with us because I feel like some of them want to get out there. It's a really cool thing and it's a great chance for us to say thank you, and after practice especially to go up and individually shake their hands and say thank you for what you do."

(on if adds extra buzz to practice having the servicemen out there) "No doubt. There is no doubt about it. Having them out there, everybody is trying to make a play. You press a little bit. You want to put on a good show. They deserve a good show. We try and put on a good show."

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