Texans notebook: Butler settling in

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Texans coach Gary Kubiak stuck with what has been a winning formula, bringing his team inside the Methodist Training Center for the second half of practice for the third consecutive Thursday.

Aferward, Kubiak said that wide receiver Andre Johnson (ankle) will play in Week 3.

"He did everything we expected him to do today," Kubiak said. "He worked the first hour of practice outside on the grass, but I did not want him to work inside. He felt OK. I think he'll be ready to go. I've just got to make sure I get him good and fresh before Sunday, but he'll be ready to go."

Tight end James Casey (ankle) was a full participant in practice after sitting out on Wednesday. Tight end Owen Daniels (knee) was a limited participant, as he has been all season coming off a torn ACL in 2009.

Settling in
Fifth-year pro Rashad Butler completed his second practice as the Texans' starting left tackle. Butler, who has been with the Texans since 2008, will start the first game of his career on Sunday against DeMarcus Ware and the Cowboys.

"He's had good practice," Kubiak said. "He's played a lot of football. It's not like he's new to what we're doing. He's been with us for a while and he's got plenty of reps. He just hasn't been out there on Sunday as much as the other guys. He'll know what he's doing. He's got a big challenge ahead of him, and we've got to help him with his challenge."

Big baller
Tackle Ephraim Salaam said that before signing with the Texans on Wednesday, he stayed in shape by playing basketball in Southern California. Among his regular running mates were former NBA players Mitch Richmond, Mark Jackson and Bryon Russell.

"It's not a game where you shoot a shot and you stand there," said Salaam (6-7, 295), who played basketball at San Diego State. "It's full-court. I have to guard Mitch Richmond, who's one of the greatest scorers in NBA history. And so I work on my feet, my quickness and all of that, and it's tremendous cardio. We'd play for about three hours, three times a week."

Salaam, who has appeared in several television shows, was in Los Angeles on the set of a horror series called 'Night Tales' when he got a call from Texans general manager Rick Smith on Monday. Three days later, he was happy to be back in the Texans' locker room.

"I got a different number (66), but same old me," said the former number 74. "I'm excited to be here, especially given the team's success. Whatever way I could help, I'm honored."

Foster for sale
Running back Arian Foster's No. 23 jersey will go on sale in the Go Texan Store and at Houston-area Academy Sports Outdoors locations on Friday.

One of the Reebok officially-licensed jerseys was waiting for Foster in his locker on Thursday afternoon. He did a double-take when he first saw it.

"It's kind of surreal, but it's cool and part of the perks of playing in the NFL," he said. "I've got to get my family one. It's pretty cool."

Quotable"I was saying they needed to do two things in order to be a good team: They needed to win a game that they're not supposed to win, and they need to win a close game. It just so happens that they took care of both of those in Week 1 and Week 2."
- T Ephraim Salaam, on what he believed that the Texans needed to do this season in order to be successful

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