Texans receiver Jacoby Jones returns a punt 73 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter.
After the Texans' 35-6 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, members of both teams spoke to the media.
Owner Bob McNair
(on today's game being the biggest win ever in franchise history) "Well, we didn't have any turnovers and I think we had maybe two interceptions, one fumble recovery and we played a very clean game, and when we do that and play for 60 minutes, we're going to play very good football. And you know, that's what we've been saying, and as a team we're learning to do that."
(on being three-for-three after the Colts game) "Well, we go to Minnesota next week and we'll have to go up there and play a clean game and not have the turnovers, and if we do that and play the way we're playing now, I'd expect us to win."
(on having a winning streak) "Well, we've never had any real streaks before, so we're establishing that now. And I think it does build and I think the players play with more confidence and I think we just have to take it one at a time, but I think it's extremely important to us."
Head coach Gary Kubiak
(on the killer instinct his team played with today) "Well, we played a complete game. We needed to have a lot of firepower. They were moving the ball there in the first half, and we were in a tough football game. I thought in the third quarter, we took control of the game as a football team. Big drives on offense, stops on defense, turnovers. We won the turnover battle for the first time this year. We played with a lot of close at the end of the game. That was a big step in the right direction and a great team effort."
(on if he was worried at the half) "I worry every week. That's just this league. There are going to be good games, there are going to be tight games. This team had a chance – or had the opportunity and has the people – to make a lot of big plays. I like the way we were playing. We played clean through the first half. Our defense had a red zone stop and ended up with two for the day. So a lot of things went on very, very positive that we hadn't been doing well, we did as a team today."
(on his decision to start FS Nick Ferguson) "Well, I mean it's nothing really against (FS) Will's (Demps) play. I wouldn't say that. You know, we're looking defensively for an identity from a standpoint of we've been making too many mistakes, and handling situations the right way and being sound in some situations. Nick has played a lot of football, and really it was just a gut from our standpoint. He has been working hard. We like what Eugene (Wilson) did when we gave him a chance. They both have played a lot of ball, so we thought we'd team them up together, especially in nickel, and our communication was very, very good. Will went and played special teams, and he's a pro. We're just going to continue to give guys opportunities, trying to get better as a football team, and those guys stood up today and played well."
(on the month that WR Andre Johnson has had) "Yeah, I don't even know where to begin. He hade 11 (catches) for 140-something (yards) today again. He is just playing so well, so much confidence. He's playing tough. They knocked the heck out of him four or five times. He's leading the team. He's rubbing off on Kevin (Walter). He's rubbing off on David (Anderson). He's special, and we're not even halfway there yet. Just very proud of him. He started leading this team the minute we walked out of Tennessee with his play, and he hasn't stopped."
(on the play of the defense and CB Dunta Robinson) "Yeah, he became the all-time interceptions leader for the franchise today. First of all, it's just great to have him back. I had an interesting conversation with him Friday. We walked off the field, and I felt like he was pressing a little bit in practice and I pulled him aside and talked to him, and I said, 'First of all, you need to understand, we're just so pleased that you're out here. There's no pressure on you. You've got to let us know where you're at physically. If we've got to play you 15 plays, we'll play you 15 plays. If you think you can go 30, we'll go 30. All you've got to do is talk to us. We have tremendous respect for you.' I thought our conversation was good. I don't know how many plays he played today, but his presence is making us better. The thing we did on defense today is we were very sound and we tackled well and made good plays. In the red zone, they were 0-for-2, and we hadn't done that all year long. That's the difference in games."
(on what FB Vonta Leach means to the team and the running game) "That has to be probably the most unselfish player on our team because he doesn't get the ball, doesn't catch it much, if any, and sure as heck doesn't run it much. He's an unselfish, physical player. Our players count on him. He helps (special teams coordinator) Joe (Marciano) on special teams. He's really doing a heck of a job and he's a leader in a lot of ways on our football team. He's got a nice personality when he's out there."
(on what he and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan did to help QB Matt Schaub the last few weeks) "The only thing I can think that we did different is we tried to take some practice time from the standpoint of take some things away from him in practice and make him react to bad situations. As a coach, in practice, you love everything to go perfectly smooth, so you script plays, you carve plays. We felt like maybe it was going too smooth, so we tried to put him in tougher situations. I think it's made him react better when he doesn't have a play. And what is he, 24-of-28 today? That's hard to do. He's playing extremely well. I'm very proud of him."
(on the play of WR Kevin Walter) "You know, I'm just so excited for him. Here's a kid that (former Texans general manager) Charley (Casserley) and I were able to get a couple years back. He didn't ask for anything. He worked hard through that first year. We probably should have had him starting that first year, and now he played against his old team today and made some big plays like that. I know that's special. I saw some of their players go up to him after the game. I can imagine how much they respect him because of the way he goes about his business. Very proud of him."
(on CB Eugene Wilson) "He's rubbing off on our players. He's very smart. He's been in more big games than anybody we've had waltz in our locker room. He handles situations well. He's got a lot of confidence. He's cheating in situations where he recognizes a formation or a tendency. That's how he makes plays. It's taken some time for us to get comfortable with him, you know. He walked in my office last Tuesday, I think, and said, 'Can I come see you?' I said, 'Sure.' He said, 'Coach, I can make some plays for you.' I said, 'Well, I know. You're fixing to get a chance to do that this week.' And he did."
(on the offensive line) "They're getting better. First of all, they're out there. Every one of them is out there every snap. (T) Ephraim (Salaam) is adding a little juice to the group. It's made (T) Duane (Brown) better. They're very young. They're only going to get better if we can just keep them all in one piece. I think we had one sack today that really, probably, strictly was my call. (QB) Matt (Schaub) was trying to just be safe with the ball. They're improving, and we need them to do that. Like I said, I think they've got a chance to become the strength of our team."
(on dialing down toward the end of the game) "Well, I think we need to learn if you're beating somebody, and running the ball means dialing it down, then that's OK. But you've got to be able to run it when the whole place knows you're running it. We did a pretty good job of that today, other than the penalty taking us out of a situation. That's becoming a team when you can line up at the end of a game and run the ball regardless of everybody knows where you're going and you can still do it. That's becoming a good team. We've got to be able to do that."
(on RB Steve Slaton's touchdown) "I'd have to go back and look. I actually didn't think he ran well in the first half, as well as he can run. I'm not disappointed in him by any means, but I told him at halftime that I thought he left a few yards out there. The thing about him is he's tough. That doesn't hurt his feelings. He just put a smile on his face and said, 'I'll go get some more for you this half.' We need him to become a big-time player. He's a pretty good player right now, and we need him to just continue to get better."
(on RB Ahman Green) "His groin got a little stiff on him. He had some real physical runs in the game. He is a concern right now, but I stopped by his locker on the way over here and he told me he'll be fine, so I'm going to trust him. We'll see where he's at tomorrow."
(on if he would move RB Ryan Moats up if RB Ahman Green is not available) "We like what we've seen from (RB Ryan) Moats. That's why we activated him. You guys saw some quickness there at the end of the game. The thing that we liked about him, he plays special teams. It's another player that puts on a uniform for us that's going to contribute. I'll go back and see how he played. We're excited to get him and we'll see how far we can bring him."
(on if there was anything he did not like today) "No, I thought it was a very good team effort. I liked our poise through the football game. I think we just kept kind of playing. We kept playing smart and playing hard, and eventually we got it done. We took a step in the right direction. We talked about two things last night in the meeting: Let's talk more as a team and let's handle situations better, and let's win the turnover battle. We got those things done today."
(on the process of getting better throughout the season) "The NFL is a long haul. We had a horrible first month, bad first quarter, and we're trying to battle out of that here in the second quarter. We've had a nice month here at home. We've got to go play a very physical, good football team on the road next. We're trying to work our way out of it and there is a long, long way to go. There are nine football games to play. We're just going to try to get better each week and stay focused on ourselves and our ball team."
(on winning three games in a row) "It's good, and I know it's good for everybody and it's something we talked about a little as a football team, but we also talked about if we can get to where we play this type of football consistently, or as close to consistently as we can, we're going to have our chances to win games in a row, whether it's three, four, five, whatever it is. This league is about playing good ball and making plays in the fourth quarter to win games. We took a step in the right direction today, and now we've got to go figure out a way to do it on the road."
WR David Anderson
(on winning three in a row) "I mean, three wins, it should be five. Sounds crazy, but you know, that's how crazy the NFL is. Three in a row and just keep going. Now, we finished our homestand and we've got to go to Minnesota and see how well we play on the road. You know, that's part of the NFL. You're expected to win your home games, so now we have to prove that we can play away."
(on contributing more with WR André Davis out) "I've been practicing Zebra (receiver) the whole year, so it's just a matter of time when my number finally got called again, so it did. There were a certain number of plays I knew I was going to play, and I went out there and did them pretty well. So I think the more opportunity I'm going to get, the better I'm going to keep playing."
(on directly contributing to the win) "It always makes you feel better, you know, when you go out there and get to make a couple of plays, score a touchdown. You just feel a lot more part of the game, like you helped win. And that's exactly it. You know, you're happy you played well and it's always great to win, but when you play well and win, it's even better."
(on if it was the most complete win of the season) "Absolutely. The offense, defense and special teams completely outplayed the Bengals, I think. That's a hard thing to do in the NFL, that's for sure. I think Matt (Schaub) played well, our line blocked well, our receivers all contributed and had big games. Jacoby (Jones) scored, I scored, Kevin (Walter) got two and Andre (Johnson) obviously just dominated on offense. Our defense played well, I mean, guys like Mario (Williams) still getting sacks. So everyone played well and contributed. It's awesome."
(on the confidence of securing the win over the Bengals) "I think all week, and last week, we've been talking about finishing and finishing games. We were up like that on Detroit at first and had to make sure we kept playing that way. I think we all knew how we kind of destroyed the game last week against Detroit and how we could have improved our play, and that's exactly what we did this week. We jumped out fast and we kept going. That was key."
(on WR Andre Johnson not wanting to come out) "You know, Andre doesn't let us take him out for many plays. That's more power to him, you know. He deserves to be out there for every play he wants to be. We'll give him breaks when he needs them, but if he doesn't, then he gets the ball."
CB Fred Bennett
(on playing defensively for 60 minutes) "Oh, by far. I thought today, besides those two field goals, they moved the ball a little bit but once they got in the red zone, we just held our own. You know, they've got some talented receivers over there, and I thought secondary-wise, back there, we did a really good job."
T Duane Brown
(on the offense being ranked fifth in the league) "We've been able to move the ball a lot, you know. We've just put ourselves in difficult positions throughout the season, but today, we just kept the ball rolling and never gave them a chance to really get back into it. You know, that's what it's all about."
(on moving the ball on offense) "Oh, yeah, just trying to keep our defense on the field as much as possible so when they come on, they can make turnovers like they did today. That's what it's all about, just keeping the ball rolling."
(on if QB Matt Schaub is doing anything different in the huddle or if people are just doing their jobs) "Yeah, everybody just knows what to do. We're not doing anything different. We're all just executing, working together, everybody taking care of their assignments, and you execute out there on offense."
(on if the Bengals' defense was tired) "Oh, yeah. You could tell. You'd get close to the line of scrimmage, you could see it in their eyes. Their will to win, it was gone. You know, they were just trying to make it through the game, it looked like. We just kept taking it to them."
(on the effect of winning on the team) "Oh, yeah. It's a lot happier around here. More smiles. Everyone's joking around. It's a great atmosphere when you're winning."
(on how his rookie season has started) "My season started off slow individually. I had a couple of rough games, so I contributed to those losses, too, myself. Now I'm starting to feel a little more comfortable. I'm playing a little better. We're winning more. That's how it goes. Everyone takes care of their job and you can execute on offense, and that's all I'm trying to do."
LB Zac Diles
(on the defensive effort) "We got some big players back in Dunta (Robinson) and then our safeties are coming down, making plays. Like I said, it was just a good all-around effort, and we're having fun out there. That's the main thing. We're just going out there having fun now and we know our assignments, and we're just going out there and flying around."
(on if he's glad he doesn't have to stop WR Andre Johnson) "Man. That's another week of 11 catches, 143 (yards). The man is just, he's – and he took some hits today, he just ate them. He ate them up. That's Andre Johnson, and he's a phenomenal athlete."
(on if the defense is rallying around what the offense has been able to do) "Yeah. As soon as you see the offense put points on the board, you're like, 'Man, let's go out there and get the ball back for the offense so they can do it again and then keep doing it and then keep doing it.' It's just great. It fell into place really well today, every phase of the ball – offensively, defensively, special-teams wise, especially when Jacoby (Jones) comes through again with a big punt return and pointed at his mom. We need to get his mom at every game on every side. Wherever the ball's going, we need Jacoby's mom in that end zone. But like I said, we needed to go out there today and play tough, and it was fun."
(on the defense going back on the field with momentum after Jones' return) "Yeah, and that was a big turnaround. As soon as Jacoby returned that, we were right back on the field. I believe they had a substantial drive, and then we were able to hold them and the offense went out there and did work. So as long as we can keep having them punt the ball and have our offense go out there and the offense keeps doing what they're doing, we're going to be great."
(on finding a killer instinct and shutting the Bengals out 21-0 in the second half) "Like you said, we just knew we had to come in and finish today. That was the biggest thing for the last couple of weeks – we didn't finish the ballgames and we let the teams get back in. They'd have a big play here, a big play there. So the biggest thing was just, 'Finish, finish,' so I believe that's what we did today."
RB Ahman Green
(on what his injury was in the game) "It was just a cramp in my leg, my left leg. Other than that, I'm good. I just have to get treatment and get ready for Minnesota."
(on the offense clicking on all cylinders) "It's great because we're being disciplined. We're hitting our reads on passing the ball and running the ball. With the good interchange with me and Steve going in there, it keeps the defense honest."
(on if the taking turns with RB Steve Slaton helps him get into a rhythm) "Yeah, because I see what they are doing with (RB) Steve (Slaton) and I get the read off of that and vice versa. Steve gets to see what they're doing to me when I'm running the ball, and then we could kind of see what the defense is doing from the passing game-wise, if they are blitzing a lot. It gives us a chance to kind of read the defense and go from there."
(on if he feels like the team has turned a corner) "We're getting there. We still have a lot of room for improvement. But this team is looking good. We're positive. We're working forward, basically. Right now, we're going to enjoy this win but get ready for the Vikings because we know they have a good defense."
WR Andre Johnson
(on the question of being on the same page with QB Matt Schaub this week as compared to last week) "Yeah, I'd have to agree with you now. It just seems like everything is working. You know, we're communicating better. We're just playing smarter, you know, as a team. It just seems like everything is moving off for us."
(on if the offense is a reflection of the kind of weapons the team has on the fly) "Well, we have a lot of guys that will make plays for us. I was really excited for Kevin (Walter) today, with him going up against his own team and getting two touchdowns. He was really pumped before the game. That's why he had that offsides, probably. I was telling him to calm down, and he goes, 'Oh, whatever, I'll look out for you.' We have a lot of guys that can make plays. If you try and shut one guy down, the other guy can go and make the play, so there's not going to be a player in the red zone who is wide open so when they try to worry about one guy, they've got to worry about a lot of other guys that can make plays for us."
(on if he worries about WR David Anderson's touchdown dance) "No. I'm not worried about that. David's a real funny guy. He fits in well with his teammates. I was coming off the field and I took a couple of hits and he was like, 'Hey, are you alright?' and I was like 'Why do you keep asking if I'm alright?' And he's like, 'You're my baby; you know I have to worry about you.' So he's a fun guy and that was a great example I got other than just getting the ball to him."
(on QB Matt Schaub as the leader of his team) "When Matt struggles and then Sage (Rosenfels) comes out and plays well, you have a lot of people saying that Sage should be the starter or this and that. But, you know, they were booing him one week and now, you don't hear any more boos about him. He's playing well. He stepped his game up and he's going to continue to play well for us. We still have little mistakes here and there, but I think we've just been playing some real good football, probably the best football we've played in a long time was right here in the past few weeks."
(on how it means to be on a team with three wins in a row) "It means a lot. Like I said before, we were really frustrated at the beginning, but now it's like a big relief. Everyone's happy. I think all the guys out there are having fun when we play. I don't think that was going on at the beginning of the season. I think the guys are just rallying around each other and just supporting each other and wanting to win. I think that's a big thing that's helping us."
(on his feelings personally)" I'm feeling real good. Yeah, I'm playing well. Hopefully, I can keep it going the way I've been."
(on the coaches trying to get him to come out but he said he didn't want to) "Yeah, that did happen. They wanted to bring me out. (Wide receivers coach) Larry (Kirksey) was calling me to come out and I was just like, 'No, just leave me in. I'm alright. Just don't worry about me.' You know, André (Davis) is normally the third guy who comes in and Larry was teasing me the other day saying, 'You know, you're going to have to get on your horse. You're going to have to work all day.' So I'm just going to have to go out and show them that I can play."
(on if the team's performance in the past three games is the best it's been since he's been here) "Yeah, I think it is. Like I said before, I think it's the best football we've played since I've been here. It's fun. It's a lot of fun, because we know what we can be. I think that's why it was so frustrating at the beginning of the season because we know that we can go out and play real good football but we weren't doing it. You know, we're starting to do it now. Like I said, I'm hoping that it's something we can continue to do and hopefully we can take what we've been doing the past few weeks on the road to Minnesota."
DT Travis Johnson
(on the improvements in the team) "You take them as you get them. Really, we just keep fighting. The quarterback was a half-rabbit, you know what I mean? He was just taking off when we were getting good penetration. We played a really good game dominating that guard, really, and Mario (Williams) was dominating at defensive end. We take them as we get them."
(on his success coinciding with Florida State's success) "Man, always. I feel that garnet and gold running through my blood. When they do well, I do well."
(on what they take into Minnesota after winning three in a row) "We're just trying to get better, that's it. We're going into this week to get better every day and prepare for this game on Sunday because they're a good team."
(on if the team can take confidence away from beating an 0-7 team) "We get a little confidence. With every win, you get confidence. The Bengals are a good team. Don't let their record fool you at all. They're professionals. They collect the check every week like we do, and I think they've just had some misfortune. We've just got to get better and worry about ourselves and just continue o get better."
(on the history of his celebratory dance) "That's the humpty hump."
(on the background of the humpty hump) "Come on, you know what the background of the humpty hump is, man."
(on if the Texans need to work on their celebration dances) "No. Hey, they're just spontaneous, man. They were great."
(on if the dances really were great) "Yeah, all of them. All of them."
(on the winning streak) "Like I said, we're just trying to get better every game. It so happens we won three in a row. We just continue every play, every practice to try to get better."
WR Jacoby Jones
(on jumping into the stands with his mother) "They were saying that on the sideline, that they should, every time they punt in a different direction, escort her on the other side of the field."
(on how it felt to get the team jumpstarted) "It felt great. Yesterday in the meeting, Coach Kubes was like, 'You're going to have more opportunities to touch the ball, so you need to step up to the plate and make a play.' Those boys did a great job of blocking, and I just ran for daylight."
(on how the play unfolded) "Well, when we were lined up tight and I saw their gunners going, I was like, 'OK, that's going to be an easy chance for me just to catch the ball.' And once I took of running, I cut off (Nick) Ferguson's block and I was just running, and I saw these two guys coming. I didn't think I was going to get between them, but when they missed, I was like, 'I'm free.' And then I saw Momma again, of course, and ran it home."
(on who suggested moving his mother to a seat on the other side of the stadium after halftime) "I think Chaun Thompson said it, to move Momma to the other side. And (LB) Zac Diles."
(on that he should move his mother to the other side) "No. I don't think she would like those seats."
(on how the win feels personally) "Like (QB) Matt (Schaub) said earlier, there's adversity in this business and you've got to keep fighting and work hard every day. And walking around carrying the ball for 21 days, high and tight- people tried to scoop it out of your hands. And I'm trying to get better at that."
(on if he still does that) "No, I try to make (special teams coordinator) Joe (Marciano) do it, though."
(on what the win means to the team) "This is our third win, and we feel it in the locker room and we enjoy winning, so we've got to keep that going."
C Chris Myers
(on what they did differently this game) "We're just being more consistent and sticking with our guys, and things are opening up. As long as we open up that running game, the passing game is going to be there."
(on if there is a noticeably difference in QB Matt Schaub the past few weeks) "As long as he's making those throws and making those touchdowns, it gives us confidence, and we'll just get better from there. As long as we give him the time to look down the field, he's going to make us plays."
(on WR Andre Johnson having another 100-yard game) "That's the way Andre has been the last few weeks. He's a beast. He's out there wanting the ball every single play, and (QB) Matt's (Schaub) giving it to him. No one is stopping him yet, so until that happens, I don't see why we wouldn't."
(on playing a complete game) "It means a lot, especially going on the road now. Having that whole month at home helped out with our confidence and having the crowd behind us. But putting together a complete game is what we have been trying to do all year and being able to finish a game, and we did that today."
Texans G Chester Pitts
(on today's win) "It was nice. We put a team away. We finished what we wanted to finish, we finished on the field, got to a victory and that's important. It's a good feeling, nice taste on our mouths and it's just something to build on. If we can play the way we've played these last couple of weeks, go up and play that way on the road, you can call ourselves contenders."
(on not giving up) "Everyone has said, 'You're never too far ahead, you're never too far behind,' and in this business, that's the truest statement. You couldn't have told anybody last week that we didn't have Detroit beat, but that thing turned into a game in the second half."
(on being a contender) "Well, I may be shooting my gun a little early making that statement, but I just really believe in my team. I believe in my teammates and I really feel like we're clicking and we're understanding how well we can play when we do things right."
CB Dunta Robinson
(on how good the game feels) "You couldn't have drawn it up any better than that. This is what we can do when we play in all three phases – offense, defense and special teams. It was a dominant performance. But we have to take these kinds of performances on the road. We haven't been playing well on the road, and we have to make sure we play well when we go to Minnesota next week."
(on if he was determined he was going to get an interception after almost intercepting the ball in the second quarter) "Yeah, after that one, you start thinking, 'Yeah, I'm going to get one.' But when things like that happen, that was my golden opportunity. So, after I didn't get it and I got the one at the end, I was like, 'Man, I'm supposed to have two.' You get greedy after that. But like I said, we played as a team today for the first time. We had been talking about that the whole season, what can happen if we play as a team. No matter what our opponent's record is, they have good players on that football team and they haven't been beaten like that the whole year."
(on how winning three games in a row feels) "Three in a row? It's a wonderful feeling. It's the first time for me. I'm happy. We just have to make sure we continue this. It's a great feeling to win three in a row, but let's see if we can get four in a row. But I'll take this three in a row on this day and, like I said, I'm just happy I made it through that entire game. I played way more snaps than I was supposed to, and we got the job done."
(on his teammates saying that Dunta Robinson is back) "I felt good. I felt a lot better than I did last week. I was a little timid last week because you're not really sure what's going to happen with your knee. You're thinking about it. I'm still not where I want to be but I feel a lot better. As long as I continue to get better each week, I think I'll be fine."
(on if he has thought about being able to build on this win) "You know, right now I'm just going to enjoy this win. I'm not really thinking too much past it, and I think the same thing goes for the rest of my teammates. We'll get back in here tomorrow and we'll get started on Minnesota and see what we can do to go down there and get us a win."
LB DeMeco Ryans
(on the defense having a few big stops in the red zone) "That's what we've been focusing on. In the red zone, that's what we've been focusing on. That's what we've been getting coached up on a lot. It worked. Guys went out, and we were very knowledgeable of what was going on and we got stops. We made them kick field goals. That's what we've been looking forward to getting done, and we got it done today."
(on getting three wins in a row) "It's big for us. It's big. We're getting used to winning around here, and that's what we've been looking for. The morale and the confidence in the locker room is up. We're just looking forward to continue doing that. Guys are having a lot of fun. If you watch us, we're having a lot of fun doing what we do, and that's how football should be played."
(on not giving up a touchdown) "That's great. As a defense, that's what you look for, a shutout. We'd love to see zero up there. That would be even better. Not to let them get into the end zone with the big-time playmakers that they have, that was huge for our defense. I think we took a big step today as a defense."
(on what it was like to see his quarterback taking a knee) "That's the best play in football. Any time your offense is out there and Matt's (Schaub) taking a knee, we did something really good that day."
(on what he thought about the defense overall) "Overall, we did some good things. We made some plays. We got the turnovers that we have been talking about getting. They were kind of getting us in a hurry-up mode, but we were still out there battling and we were still making plays. To not let them get into the end zone, that's the best I've seen us play."
(on the secondary with S Nick Ferguson and CB Eugene Wilson) "It was good with Ferg (Ferguson) and Eugene back there, two experienced guys. They know how to play ball and they know how to play the coverages well and they do a good job of that. So just watching them out there, having them out there, I have a lot of confidence in those guys that they can step up and make the plays."
(on what CB Eugene Wilson adds to the secondary) "You saw him go up and get the interceptions. He just adds another big-time playmaker with Dunta (Robinson) and him out there. Petey (CB DeMarcus Faggins) and Fred (Bennett), we have guys who can make plays on the ball that are out there, and that's the kind of guys you want behind you in the secondary."
(on his teammates' celebrations after big plays) "Man, we're having fun. We're going to keep celebrating. When we're winning and we're doing well, we're going to keep celebrating and keep having fun. It's a fun time out there on the field."
T Ephraim Salaam
(on today's historic win) "It's another milestone. It seems like since I've been here, every year we accomplish more milestones, and it's nice. It's nice to have three in a row, but we're looking at the big picture."
(on playing a complete game) "It's awesome. The fact that the team is coming together, finally, special teams, offense and defense, I think it says a lot about our character. We started off really rough and it takes strong men to battle up through what we went through to and come out on top."
QB Matt Schaub
(on being worried after the long drive they did not get before the half) "No, we weren't concerned at all. You look at the first half and it was kind of crazy. We didn't have the ball very much. You know, we had that first drive and we stalled around midfield and then we had the 15-play drive and then we went down there and scored, and then we had 50 seconds and we didn't have very many snaps. But we weren't frustrated or down or anything. We knew if we would just concentrate on things we were doing in the first half well and just keeping that offense up and keep converting those third downs and keep staying on the field, good things would happen. And we were able to do that in the second half, execute those things."
(on how he feels about his performance) "I feel good about my performance today, but for me to do that, there's 10 other guys in that huddle that have to be doing that as well. So as an offense, we functioned really well today. Across the board, guys are getting open. They're on the line. They dominated the line of scrimmage for us and they kept the pocket real clean and allowed me to step up and make those throws to those open receivers. And then those guys, Andre (Johnson), Kevin (Walter), Owen (Daniels), and then they were making plays down the field, David (Anderson) when he was in there. So it was a complete effort on everybody's part today."
(on anything new he can say on WR Andre Johnson) "Nope, just go back the last few weeks and copy those answers down."
(on WR Kevin Walter coming up against his former team) "Yeah, we know Kevin can do it. He brings it to the table every week. He is a guy that you give an opportunity to catch the football, and he's going to make a play. He does an incredible job in the run game and, of course, blocking, and when he gets an opportunity to catch the football, he's going to come down with it and make a play. So we really rely heavily on him to take a lot of pressure off Andre (Johnson) because when they do roll coverages, Owen (Daniels) and Kevin (Walter), they come up with a lot of big plays for us."
(on seeing WR Kevin Walter's second touchdown) "Yeah, that was kind of crazy. I threw the ball and completed it and then I kind of looked to the sideline to look at the next play, the next play call. I took my focus off downfield thinking he fell, they touched him down, and then all of the sudden I hear everyone go crazy and yelling. I look down and he's getting in the end zone. I'm looking forward to seeing that on film tomorrow, see how that actually took place."
(on him being on the same page with WR Andre Johnson) "I think we're definitely there. It might've not been there last week, but Andre and I, we demand perfection and every time we try to complete a pass, we expect it to be complete. You know, he's a tremendous receiver and a tremendous player, and we expect a lot out of ourselves. So I think we're getting there. And this game, you always search for that perfect game, and you know, we were close to there today but we've still got things we can clean up and work on."
(on what he thought of WR Andre Johnson taking some tough shots today) "I think they were just putting their players in a position to do that when he caught the ball. He demands a lot of attention from their free safety, and man coverage is looking his way. So when he completed it and went to run, they were there. But he is going to get hit and he knows it, any of those receivers, and they don't mind it as long as that ball gets there before they get hit so they have a chance to protect themselves. You know, he is going to take some of those shots, but he's a big, strong guy and he can handle it."
(on if teams are doing different things to take WR Andre Johnson out) "Well, teams are trying to do similar things that other teams are doing, but there's only so much you can do, especially when we have guys like Owen (Daniels) and Kevin (Walter), so it's hard to do so much to take Andre away when there's other guys that can make plays. You eventually have to do man-to-man coverage or leave someone on an island and hope that they win, but as you see, Andre wins most of the time."
(on what it means to him playing great four starts in a row after a rough beginning) "Just keep playing. Just keep moving forward. You're going to deal with adversity in this business as a player, have rough games, but you've just got to keep working, keep plugging away, keep playing and keep depending on your guys to play, and that's what we've been doing."
(on if the adversity of the first two games helped him) "You know, that's hard for me to say now. Looking back, if you ask me down the road in a few years, maybe. But right now, we're just excited about our last three weeks coming away with wins. We're on a roll and we've just got to keep it going."
WR Kevin Walter
(on if it was special to score two touchdowns against his former team) "Just getting the win is special. I was in Cincinnati for three years and I still have good relationships with all those guys. It was good to see those guys today but, most of all, it was good to get a win."
(on what it was like to play so well today) "Basically, we played our game. We didn't turn the ball over. We told ourselves we didn't want to turn the ball over, we wanted go out there and make plays, and we had a lot of guys make plays today. That's what we are capable of doing."
(on his touchdown celebration today) "Yeah, a little skateboarding. I don't do that stuff much, but I had to give a little shimmy on that second one. I was excited and it was kind of a spur of the moment thing and it was a lot of fun."
(on T Eric Winston saying he had a problem with his celebration because he was too big to follow it) "You know, Winston, he can do something. But everyone played great today. We just have to continue to do that and move on."
(on taking us through his second touchdown) "It was man coverage, and I knew I was going to get the ball once we knew the corners were over. Matt (Schaub) had a good ball, and I dove for it a little bit and I knew he was behind me a little bit so I had to get up. And obviously he didn't tackle me, so I had to take it the distance."
(on WR Andre Johnson's play) "Unbelievable. Professional. This guy is the best receiver in the league and he proves that week in and week out. It starts in practice, too. He comes to work, he practices his tail off and it shows on Sunday. I'm glad he's here."
(on the coaches trying to send WR Jacoby Jones in for WR Andre Johnson and Johnson waving him off) "That's what he wants. He wants to stay out there and battle with it for his team. He's making plays out there and helping his offense, helping his whole team win."
(on the productivity of the offense) "We're just executing. We're doing our thing. We told ourselves we didn't want to turn the ball over today. We just have to keep plugging and keep making plays. We have guys that can do that from Andre (Johnson) to Owen (Daniels) to D.A. (David Anderson) to Jacoby (Jones) to everybody, myself. We have running backs – (Steve) Slaton is running the ball well. Our offensive line, we're just clicking. We're playing our game, and we just have to continue to do that. We played well at the beginning of the year but we turned the ball over. Today, we didn't, and that showed."
(on having a good year and how he feels about it) "I feel good. I'm trying to get better and better each week. That's the main thing, is to get better. I come to practice and try to get better then. If you practice well during the week, then you play well on Sundays, so I have to keep continuing to do that."
DE Mario Williams
(on overall defensive performance) "I mean, everything was just clicking today. We were playing off one another. We were just playing solid football against them."
(on the difference between this game and the other games) "It's just, over time, we're really learning to play together. We moved most people around in there. We're just clicking right now. The games, I mean, everything is great."
(on what it means to the defensive line not to give up touchdowns and stop a team in the red zone) "Yeah, I mean that was the biggest emphasis that we've talked about, covering the red zone. We had a few out there and we managed to get back and stop them. For us to come out and do that, being able to do that was our biggest weakness, so that was a big plus for us."
(on his sack) "Well, I don't know what to say. I don't know. It was just, I mean it was rushing. I had a tight end above me and he tried to chip me and I kind of moved around a little bit and pushed him back into the tackle. I got a good punch with him and then I turned the corner. I saw the ball and just hit the ball."
(on him getting more attention the last two games than ever before) "Yeah, I mean, especially starting last week, there was a lot of sly protection and chips, especially last week, there were a lot of chip blocks and double teams in there. But at the same time, you know everybody up front is playing ball and playing hard, so everybody is getting a chance to make plays. We just need to keep going."
(on winning three in a row) "Starting off the season was devastating because we definitely should've won some more games there, but to win three in a row, I mean, I know it seems like a shock to everybody else out there in the community and people who watch the Texans, but it shouldn't be. To me, I mean, it's just ball and it should be like that, so we just need to keep it going."
(on building on the three wins) "We're taking one game at a time. I mean, we won three, but we've got a big stretch in front of us and that's all that matters."
Head coach Marvin Lewis
(on the game) "Well, that was, you know, first half of the football game, starting with the punt return where we just put ourselves in the hole right away with the return. We don't get things executed correctly; we get a great punt, the ball where it needs to be, and we don't get the return on the ground. And I think we did some things both offensively and defensively until the drive where they got the touchdown there in the second quarter. We settled down and played better football, you know, and played good on defense, but then in the third and fourth quarter, I thought as a football team we just didn't play good enough today at all. Our execution, their third down, I think they converted 9-of-11 on third downs or whatever they converted, and you're just not going to beat anybody that way. With guys in perfect position, we just don't make enough football plays, so we're behind."
(on stopping the run but struggling with stopping the passing game) "Well, yeah, they did a good job in the passing game. We failed to execute things. We didn't get the quarterback touched, really. We had him off rhythm a little bit early, but then it seemed like they settled in and we were reeling. They do a good job with the play-action and so forth and, you know, bringing the ball with depth back and we (didn't) compete very well and make enough plays in the secondary today."
(on if they improved at all in any area today) "No, I don't think we improved in much. You know, I haven't seen the tape, so it's hard for me to sit here and get beat 35-6 or whatever we did and sit here and say we improved at anything today. That would be hard for me to... couldn't even muster that up."
(on how he felt RB Cedric Benson played) "Again, I can't comment on individual players. Cedric continues to carry the football well for us."
(on CB Johnathan Joseph's play) "Well, he's got to just touch him down, you know. You've gotta be there. He got pushed off the route a little bit. Kevin Walter gave him a little shove, but he's gotta get there and get him down. That's part of football, professional football. He gets there, and Kevin's already back on his feet. You've gotta make the tackle, just make the tackle."
(on if Joseph's play was a mental mistake) "No, it's a lack of finishing the play."
(on how his players have appreciated his positive outlook to keep up morale and if he will continue that) "Well, what I say to them now is they have to find a way, we all have to find a way collectively, to flip our psyche because they are going to feel beaten down and they are going to have to find a way. And we will find a way to come out and have a great week of preparation and get ready to play a football game and win a football game at home. After this one, we're going to have to have the 24-hour rule. We're going to have to flush this bad boy because there is not much good that occurred in the second half of this game, I don't think. We'll have to see what the tape shows."
(on if he feels this is NFL football) "No. You have to get them down. We have to stop third downs. I can't… sometimes in coaching, when you are calling plays offensively and defensively, you get things matched up exactly and then we don't make the play today, and that was disappointing, really disappointing, and we don't have many options. It's not like you've got someone who is going to ride in and save you because we are playing with the best guys we've got, so we are going to have to find a way to get these players better and put them in the right holes and the right gaps on offense, defense and special teams and go."
RB Cedric Benson
(on if he expected his return to be easier or harder than it has been) "I don't know. I guess I could say that I thought it would probably be a little harder. I guess when you do something, I guess you're good at what you do."
(on how tough it has been to go through what the Bengals are going through) "It's tough. You're trying to help get it turned around and you're putting your all into it, and the team's still kind of going through some of the same things they've gone through before. We've improved in some areas but not enough, not enough to get wins. So, I mean, it's just frustrating."
(on if this has been one of the most frustrating parts of his career) "Yeah, this is the first time I've ever been losing this much or lost this much. But it's going to be a good experience. I think that you can find pride in it if you can actually get it turned around, so we'll just go back to the drawing board next week and try to find that and make it happen."
(on how it has been playing in Cincinnati) "It's been good so far. I've been pretty busy with learning the plays and working and stuff. I haven't really had a chance to get out and meet many fans or anything like that, but it's been good."
(on how it felt to see T Eric Winston again) "It was great. It was great. It was good to see Eric. He looked good. He played great out there today. I saw (G Kasey) Studdard and (DT) Frank Okam, a lot of people. It's just good coming back home, and even better when you see friends."
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
(on if it was frustrating not getting into the end zone) "Yeah, just frustrating all-around, especially getting embarrassed like that. It's hard to swallow a game like this, and we've just got to get back to the drawing board."
(on if 0-8 is embarrassing) "Yeah it is, just in general. Again, this game, we went into halftime feeling like offensively we did some good things and they had a big play on special teams but our defense was holding up pretty good. We came out after halftime, just like in the Steelers game, feeling like we had a good shot, and it all kind of fell apart in the second half again."
(on why the offense cannot finish a drive) "It's just one thing here or there. It's a penalty, it's a sack-fumble, it's not converting on the third down, it's all kinds of different things. I think if we did have the answer to that, obviously, we would be doing a better job.'
(on why they were unable to move the ball down the field) "We didn't have many attempts downfield. I think we had a few fades on the sideline and that third-and-long. It's taking what they give us and, unfortunately, we didn't get the ball down the field and they had big plays today."
(on if it is too easy to stop the Bengals' running game) "If you look at one bright side of the game today for the offense, I thought we ran the ball pretty well. When you get behind by so much, you obviously can't continue with the running game. I think Cedric (Benson) stepped in and did a good job. Hopefully, we go from here and continue to build on that."
(on if he changed his game in the second quarter) "No, it's hard. We came out of the first half with a couple of good drives and only six points. I think that frustrates you a little bit, but we came out in the second half excited about what we had done offensively and excited to go out there and play. We thought we had been pretty good, but threw up a goose egg in the second half."
(on the pass to WR Chad Ocho Cinco in the end zone) "I didn't see where the pass ended up, but it was one-on-one coverage and I threw a fade to Chad (Ocho Cinco) in the end zone, which we have practiced a lot in the past few weeks. It seems to be the story of the season, though. We're missing those big plays and missing making something that's going to give us momentum and put us over the hump. Whether it's a few inches, whether it's a penalty, no matter what it is, we are not doing it. We're not winning games."
(on if he is worried about his team's effort) "To tell you the truth, we've had good practices. It's hard because if you look at the last two games, we've really struggled in the second half and some of that half is a point of effort, you would think. Just from the attitude from the guys in the locker room, everybody is still fighting and everybody still wants to win, so I don't think you can pin it on that."
WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh
(on the inability to get the ball down field) "It's been a mystery for eight games. That's not what I do here. You've got to ask the powers that be why that's the case. We call them. It's just we haven't converted them. That's it. We call them. They've been called. They just haven't been converted."
(on not getting deep with the ball) "Honesty, we could have gotten deep. They played us a lot of man-to-man. Actually, they did a really good job of mixing it up. They played us more man-to-man than we've seen in the past few games, but they did a good job of mixing it up. They played heavy outside leverage, forcing you to release inside. That's a good job."
(on normally being able to do damage downfield against man-to-man) "I would say 50 percent of the game, they played us man, but they did a good job of mixing it up. So you might anticipate one coverage and you call a play anticipating one coverage, and they play man and it's a short route call. So you catch the ball. You don't think anything of it. It's an eight- or nine-yard gain, and then when you call a deep ball, they don't play the coverage that you expect them to play, so it doesn't work. They did a good job. Right now, we just can't even really find a word to describe the way our season is going. I can't. I've used embarrassing, sickening, but I can't find the word."
(on if the way the offense played today comes down to execution) "Obviously, the offense right now is probably the worst in the league statistically, so I don't know. It's tough. I would have never thought that we would be in this position. I could never have imagined that after eight games, we would have no wins and statistically probably be the worst ranked offense in the league, and that's what we are right now. That's hard to imagine."
S Dexter Jackson
(on any positives the team the can from this game) "It's nice to see that you guys are talking to me again. The main thing is that we came out healthy, but we can play a lot better football than we played. We've just got to pick it up. We've got people that aren't making plays that are supposed to be making plays. We just need to pick it up as a team. Once we start doing that, we will start playing better as a team and start winning."
(on how he categorized their play today) "We played horrible. We came in here and they put up 35 points on us and we put up six. If you look at the score, it speaks for itself, 35-6. The eye in the sky don't lie. We have to just come back to the drawing table and look at what we did good and what we did bad and then try and go from there."
(on how they stopped the run but not the pass) "A lot of people made catches. I don't know what happened but I know we have to play better as a team, and we aren't doing that."
(on if he is worried that guys aren't going to give 100 percent the rest of the season) "I can't say anything about that, but myself, I'm going to go out and lead by example. I feel like I played hard tonight. I feel like I left everything out there on the field tonight. I want to let the guys see that I'm trying to play hard, and hopefully they will play hard as well."
CB Johnathan Joseph
(on if he thought he made the tackle on WR Kevin Walter) "Yeah, I thought he was down. Like I said, if I didn't think he was down, I would have tackled him."
(on if him missing the tackle hurts more than others because it was a bad judgment call) "Whether we are winning the game or losing, it's still going to hurt. He wasn't down. They ruled it a touchdown, and that's what it was. I haven't had a chance to look at it, so I can't tell you anything else, but during the game, I thought he was down."
(on the announcer on CBS calling his tackle attempt lazy) "That's the guys on CBS. He wasn't out there."
(oh how the Texans were successful at throwing the ball to WR Andre Johnson) "They put him in the slot. They moved him around in motion. There was a lot of movement, and he had a big day."
T Levi Jones
(on how he feels after this loss) "As a player on the field, it is disheartening, especially falling to 0-8. This is not where you want to be. It's not where you worked so hard to get, to come short."
(on if this was an embarrassing loss) "I mean, any time you get beat that bad in the NFL, it's embarrassing."
(on where they start to fix their problems) "Hopefully, we can go into some meetings, decide from our coaches what went wrong and get it fixed. Hopefully, that's how it happens. Hopefully, that's how it works and we get it fixed."
(on if he is worried that guys might give up on the season) "You can't let thoughts like that creep in. Are they there? Yeah, but you can't let it dictate what you do. You have to go out there and play for yourself. There are a number of guys that are doing that."
S Chinedum Ndukwe
(on if he believes that the Texans are better than the Bengals) "They were better today, and that's all that really matters. So, I'd say on paper, no, but when it really matters, obviously, yeah."
(on what happened today) "I don't know what to say. If I tried to explain it, I would sound like a fool. I can't really explain it. It's just where we're at."
(on it not being a surprise that the Texans threw it to WR Andre Johnson so much) "No. No. He's one of the best in the league."
WR Chad Ocho Cinco
(on if it is hard to continue to be positive like he has been throu, ghout the entire season) "It's tough. You know that. I am very boisterous and very opinionated about what's going on, and most of the times what I'm saying, there's always some truth to it. Right now, what I'm doing is I'm staying pos, itive. I'm smiling. I'm working and I'm going to keep on grinding regardless of what the outcome of these games are. I'm going to keep on doing what I can and to the best of my ability. I'm not happy about the situation. It's embarrassing. There's not much I can do except just keep working."
(on him almost catching the ball) "Almost isn't good enough. It's been 'Almost' all year. It's been the same thing all year, almost. Almost isn't good enough."
(on if it is a matter of just a couple of inches of catching the ball) "It was a couple of inches last week, the same thing. I don't know what it is. It's like stuff like that, we'd always connect, and now all of the sudden, everything is inches, inches away."
(on moving the ball well in the first half) "Yeah, in the first half, we were beautiful. First half every week we've played, it's been beautiful. It's the second half, that's killing us. It's killing us. Our defense, you look at the score and you think we're getting blown out, but we're not giving them a chance. They're on the field. We're three-and-out more than you know. I don't know. So, us as an offense, we've got to give them a chance and opportunity to rest. We're three-and-out. They're back on the field. We're three-and-out. They're back on the field again. We've got to put up. We're not putting up points the way we used to."
(on putting together a couple of good drives in the first half) "Yeah, we had a couple of drives. We threw it. We ran it well, not the way we wanted to be."
(on RB Cedric Benson having a good game) "Yeah, very good. Really good."
(on how he thinks the effort is) "It's there. It's there. It's there."
(on if the effort is there the entire year) "To me. I'm not watching everybody. I'm just making sure I'm doing my assignments and doing everything I can 110 percent."
(on if he is worried the effort might not be there the rest of the season) "It'll still be there. We don't have the type of individuals that just lay down like that, anyway. Some of the veterans we have around here are not going to allow people to lay down, anyway."
(on what he said to WR Andre Johnson after the game) "'Dre, that's my boy. 'Dre and I, we're friends since little ones. We live in the same area. We hang out together in the offseason. I told him congratulations and keep on going and stay safe and just keep on grinding."
(on where he thinks WR Andre Johnson ranks in the league as one of the best receivers) "He's in the top tier, most definitely. He's a Johnson. What do you expect? What kind of question is that?"
(on if what WR Andre Johnson is doing this year is like what he did last year) "Well, every year since I've been playing except this one."
(on him playing well when he was a Johnson) "Yeah. Yeah. I'm Ocho now."
(on if he is going to go back to Johnson) "No, I don't need to go back now. I'm staying what I am."
(on if the way the Texans threw the ball reminded him of the good old days with Cincinnati) "Yeah, man. No matter what you did, we're going to get it to whatever individuals' hands we wanted to get it to. We're not at that point where we can do that right now. What we have to do is stay basic and make the basic stuff work. Like I told you last week, and I'm going to keep saying it every week, until we execute the basic stuff, we can't go any further outside that general playbook like the first day of training camp."
(on head coach Marvin Lewis saying the game plan was there but the execution wasn't and if he agrees) "Whatever he said, then yeah. There you go. Whatever he said."
QB Carson Palmer
(on evaluating what he does and where he goes from here) "I'm just in the process of rehabbing and doing everything my training tells me to do to get me healthy. I'll be able to play when this thing gets healed up."
(on if he is going to holdout until the bye to decide what to do with his injury) "Yeah. It most likely looks like they are going to look at it after the bye, evaluate it, and see where we are from there."
(on if he has been able to do anything throwing lately) "No, no throwing. I've just been rehabbing and doing all football-related exercises."
DT John Thornton
(on the effort from the team in the game) "We don't have a problem with effort, other than that one play where JJ (Jonathan Joseph) tagged him down. That was a mistake by him. We don't have any guys quitting or an effort problem, so that's not the case."
(on how QB Matt Schaub was so efficient in the short passing game) "Well, you know, that was their plan. They had a plan to throw quicker passes, so that's what they did. They usually try to come out and run. We did a good job on the run, so they went to the pass."
G Bobbie Williams
(on if he is worried about how many guys are in for the challenge at this point) "No, I'm not worried about it. As long as they have the stripes on their helmet, I know they're going to come out and fight and I feel it's my duty to make sure that the guys are coming out to fight. That's all I can do is just try to rally the troops to come out and fight. We're not giving up. We're not going to give up, and I plan on just proving that by play."