Brian Cushing was back on the field, and that made the Texans happy. From the fans who roared during the inside linebacker's pregame introduction, all the way up to the franchise's leader.
"I was pleased to see his quickness," Texans' founder, chairman and CEO Bob McNair said. "That's the big question and he's got the quickness. He can get out there and run with receivers and cover a lot of ground."
Cushing was in for a total of 10 plays during the win over Miami. His lone tackle came when he dropped running back Lamar Miller for a loss of five yards on a pass play.
"He told me he would play 10 plays, and the 10th one was awesome and it was going to be a sack," head coach Gary Kubiak said. "It could have been as good as it could possibly be. That was his last play and we got him out of there."
Cushing's 2012 season was cut short after just five games because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament he suffered at New York. The bulk of the last year has seen him attack the rehab process, and Kubiak was happy to see one of his defensive leaders back in action.
"I'm proud of him," Kubiak said. "I told him going out of the tunnel today, 'Welcome back. I'm proud of you. You worked your tail off.' He's got a lot of confidence right now and for him to get out there and get hit on again and all that type of stuff is a big step in the right direction."
Wide receiver Andre Johnson was also glad to have Cushing back in the fold.
"He's a big part of our defense, he's a big part of our team," Johnson said. "It was great just to have him back out on the field. I think it got everybody excited just to see him back out there because we know what he went through as far as with the injury and stuff."