The Texans practiced inside and outside at the Methodist Training Center on Thursday. After, head coach Gary Kubiak and a few players met with the media to answer questions. The following is a transcript of their respective interviews.
Head Coach Gary KubiakDT Shaun CodyTE Owen DanielsLB DeMeco Ryans
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on anything new with the team) "We're the same. (CB Antwaun) Molden still did not practice today. He's touch and go until we go into the weekend. We worked half of our practice outside and half of it inside trying to make sure we get a lot of noise practice, especially with our defense. Other than that, nothing changed."
(on the Colts defensive line) "They've been very aggressive in the preseason and that's something that (Colts Defensive Coordinator) Larry (Coyer) has brought to their defense. I was with Larry for years in Denver. They're good enough to come get you with four. We better start by blocking those four first. They're a dang good defense. Our big challenge, all the time, is our tackles having a big battle on their hands holding up those big guys. We know that."
(on what G Antoine Caldwell has done to impress to get the starting job) "He and (G Mike) Brisiel are still going to split time. He's got big-time talent. We're looking for the overall consistency as a player and it's gotten better. Last year he struggled with it. This year, he's much better. We got another good player in Mike who plays for us. The two of them together has been a nice combination. We'll see. I just think it was too close to call as far as separating one of them now. They'll both work."
(on if the first game of the season is still special) "It's special, they all count the same. One thing about football is there is an amazing amount of work going into one game. A week's work is not like basketball or baseball from that standpoint. There's a lot of preparation and very few opportunities to go there. We know it's a big one and we've been working hard toward it all through training camp. We've had a lot of things that we've done geared towards Indianapolis. We got to keep our poise about it to make sure we go out and play the type of football we're capable of playing."
(on has the play of Colts QB Peyton Manning changed at all) "They've added some wrinkles. Just watching in the preseason, they're doing a few things differently. He's got a new offensive coordinator with him for the first time. There is a little bit of difference there, but as far as how he goes about it and what he's capable of doing to you and all that, hasn't changed at all."
(on accepting the team that he has now going into the season) "I think with every team coming out of camp you think you know what you're going to get. I think that opening day there is always an element of surprise as far as somebody who amazes you as a player and somebody who may not. With some you may think is doing well and find out they're not doing well. Every team is getting back a few guys healthy that they've been holding the last few weeks of preseason. There are normally surprises opening week of the season. Hopefully we'll be consistent in what we're doing."
(on how TE Owen Daniels' practice today) "He took half a practice. He took his load and is ready to go. He'll get his snaps in the game. How many? Like I said, we'll see."
(on why did he move practice inside to the Methodist Training Center) "I just thought it was pretty darn hot out there. We got good work yesterday. The way I have it set, when we're in our pads I'd rather us be on the field. I don't like us in pads in turf. Once we got them off halfway through practice, we come in here and pick up the speed of practice again and can work a little louder in here than we can outside."
(on if he has a different approach coming into this season from last year) "I can't put my finger on something. Obviously, you're doing things different at the end of the season than you have in the beginning, so I have changed my way a little bit going into this game. Not nothing so extravagant to be that big of deal to you all, but our preparation has been a little bit different coming into this game and more in pattern to how we ended the season last year."
(on how equipped is he to handle all the changes this season as opposed to past seasons) "I hope I'm better prepared. I'm more comfortable in what I'm doing and who I'm doing it with. I got a lot of confidence in my coaches. It's like anything else, the more you do it, the better you feel. I'm excited and I feel good about my staff and team. We're playing a great team and looking forward to it."
DT Shaun Cody
(on how much different the defensive line is this year as opposed to last year) "As far as the defensive line, I think our chemistry is good right now. Me and (DE) Antonio (Smith) were new to the group this time last year. Now we're all boys and we understand each other's game. It's been a big help to be around the guys."
(on facing the Colts offense, does the defensive line keep it simple) "You have to run to pass the ball and they know that. My job, personally, is to stop the run. So I'm going to go out there and try to get that done."
(on why it is so hard to get to Colts QB Peyton Manning to sack him) "He just understands when to get rid of the ball. He understands his offense and knows what is needed to get it done. When a guy understands that, he moves faster in the pocket and he knows what to do. It's definitely hard to get back there to him, but it's possible."
TE Owen Daniels(on if there was any doubt in his mind that when he returned back from injury that he wouldn't be as strong that he was before.) "I don't think so. Typically with my injury you come back even stronger because your legs are stronger and you're in better shape. You just don't really know until you're back out there playing. I'm still waiting for that test this Sunday. Hopefully, I'll be feeling good and playing well."
(on what is the first thing that goes through his head when he's hit in the knee after recovering from an ACL injury) "Well, that's what I'm waiting for. That's what I'm hoping I could get primarily. Any type hit will always be a little scary. You don't want to get hit on your knee, ever. For me, it's about making cuts off that knee. Taking a hit, it's going to be scary; but it'll knock me back into reality and make me feel good about being out there."
LB DeMeco Ryans
(on facing QB Peyton Manning and the Colts this Sunday) "We're excited to go against the Colts. It's a big a game in our division. It'll be big for us to get a win against these guys and start our momentum to roll early."
(on if he pays attention to QB Peyton Manning's pre-snap audible movements) "I don't get that much into it, but then again, as much as I have in the past trying to figure what he was saying and what he was checking into. I don't try to get caught up into that. Whatever happens, happens. No matter what call he calls we just have to play our defense and be right on our assignments. If all 11 guys are right on their assignments and we're playing hard, it really doesn't matter what he's checking into or what he's calling."
(on what is the key for the Texans defense this Sunday) "We just have to focus on ourselves and don't get caught up in what they're doing. If we focus on ourselves and focus on what we're doing, then we'll be perfect on our assignments. If we do that and fly around the ball and make plays and get a couple of turnovers we'll be fine."
(on playing opening day at home in front of a big crowd) "It's going to be big for us. It's a home game so we need a lot of crowd noise from our fans. We need for them to be loud and make (Colts QB) Peyton (Manning) have to give the hand signals and not let him make his checks verbally. That's going to be big for us and that slows them down on offense when they can't get on the ball and hurry up and make those checks. When the fans are loud it's hard for those guys to communicate so we need for our fans to be out there and be loud for us."
(on not allowing Colts QB Peyton Manning get into the Texans defensive mindset) "He's like Jordan, he's going to get his points and make plays. We can't let the other guys have a great day on us. (Colts QB) Peyton (Manning) is a great player. He's been a great player in this league for several years now. He's capable of finding holes in your coverages. We just have to find a way to get some turnovers and get some big plays when it's our opportunity to go and make those plays."
(on the first game of the season being a big test for the team) "It's definitely going to let us know early where we are as a team and they're as consistent as any team. Over the years, they made it to the Super Bowl and you can't discredit that. We're playing a great team and we have to find a way to beat these guys. They've been head of our division for a while now. It's a big game for us if we could go out and get a win. It'll feel like it'll do a lot for our team."
(on Head Coach Gary Kubiak's comment of being tired of seeing the Colts win the division) "Talking about it is one thing and actually going out there and doing it is another. We just have to go there and do it. The talk before the game really doesn't matter. When it comes down to those 60 minutes, it's about who can make the most plays."