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Ryans returns to Reliant


Linebacker DeMeco Ryans returned to Reliant Stadium Monday for his first day of offseason workouts this year. Ryans had been training in Arizona while the Texans worked on a possible contract extension and is excited to be back with his teammates. Judging by the sign in the locker room that read, "Welcome back Captain 'Meco," the players were just as happy about his return.

Brooke Bentley (Texans TV): How does it feel to be working out with the team?

DeMeco Ryans: It feels great just to be back here with my guys, be here happy with my teammates. It's fun to walk in the building and see all smiling faces. It's just a warm welcome back, and I really appreciate the guys for the warm welcome.

Brooke Bentley: So did you miss them?

DeMeco Ryans: Oh, yeah. I definitely missed the guys. I was out in Arizona just working out pretty much by myself, so it's fun to be around the guys. And I did, I missed them a lot. So it's fun to be back here and just hang out with my teammates, guys I know I'm going to go to battle with.

Brooke Bentley: I heard that they had a welcome back sign for you in the locker room.

DeMeco Ryans: Yeah, I guess (strength and conditioning coach) Ray (Wright) had the sign, "Welcome back Captain 'Meco." It just put a big smile on my face. Like I said, it's good to be back. It's back home; it's just coming home. It's fun to be back, and I'm excited to get back and start working out with my teammates.

Brooke Bentley: You were in Arizona. Talk about the program you were doing there, and compare it to what you did last year.

DeMeco Ryans: Well, it was a little different workout out in Arizona. But Ray's new program is going well. I like the new things that he's done. (He's) changed the weight room around a little bit; I was a little lost when I walked in there for a second. But it's a very {QUOTE}good program. I think he's doing a good job. Great opportunity for him, and I'm excited to start back working out with him again. He's been training me for the past three years, so it's fun to see him in the position that he's in now and just working his way up. So I'm happy for him, and I know we're going to have a great program this offseason.

Brooke Bentley: Last year, you got really big during the offseason. You were lifting a lot. So how does your body feel now compared to last year?

DeMeco Ryans: I feel a little better. I'm leaner now this offseason – had to get off the junk food. But no, I'm feeling a lot better and I'm not going to get as big this year. I'm going to try to keep my weight down so I can just run around a lot more and just make plays.

Brooke Bentley: Did you pay attention to the Texans' offseason moves, like the signing of Cato June?

DeMeco Ryans: Right. I paid attention to all the moves. I actually worked out with Cato today. Me, Cato and O.D. (tight end Owen Daniels) worked out today. Good guy, fits right in well. I think we do a good job of going out and getting guys that they feel right at home when they come into our locker room. I think that's the most important part is getting guys that gel with the other guys, because we're like one big family here. So they're a real good fit. I also met Antonio (Smith), and he's another great fit. So we've got some good additions. We'll just see how it all pans out on the field.

Brooke Bentley:It's going to be exciting for that front seven with those two additions

DeMeco Ryans: Oh, yeah. It should help us out a lot with a guy like Antonio, (who is) supposed to be a good pass rusher. If we can get him on the opposite side of Mario (Williams) and Cato to fit in with the linebacker corps, I think our front seven will be a lot better.

Brooke Bentley: Now, there's also a lot of talk in the draft about the Texans maybe drafting an outside linebacker. Do you pay attention to that pre-draft talk?

DeMeco Ryans: Not much, but I've heard speculating about getting an outside linebacker. But we'll see this Saturday what happens. That's one thing about the draft, going through that process: You never know what's going to happen. If we can get a great player in the first round who's an outside linebacker, we'd love to have him.

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