Head coach Gary Kubiak and players spoke to the media after the team's 26-20 loss to the Tennessee Titans.
Head coach Gary Kubiak
(on how difficult the loss is) "It's tough to lose in this league. That was a great football game, a tremendous game on both teams part. When you get to that point in the game it's going to come down to one play. You've got to give that kid (Titan's QB Vince Young) a lot of credit. The play he made right there is special. It's off the charts. Congratulations to him and Jeff's (Titan's head coach Fisher) team. It was a hell of a win for them and a very devastating loss for us, very difficult. It was a very well-fought football game but somebody's got to make a play to get it over with, and they made it right there."
(on what he told his team going into overtime) "I told them I felt good about where we were, to be going into overtime right there. I felt good about our opportunity whether we got the ball or whether we had to give it up. I felt good about our football team's chances. That's a position you want to be in as a coach, as a player. We were right there, but like I said they made the play and we didn't make it. They made a tremendous play."
(on taking a knee to take the game to overtime)"When the ball is on the six or seven yard line, I'm not going to give them the ball back. They had a time out left. I'm not going to make a mistake there and drop back in the end zone or give them the ball back when this kid (Titans' K Rob Bironas) made a 60 yarder last week to win. I'll take our chances with any football team in overtime. I expect our defense to rise to the occasion or our offense. I felt good about going into overtime right there. I'd never do anything to hurt our team. Coaching-wise, I'd do the same thing."
(on the play of Titans' QB Vince Young) "No, the kid's a great player; he's going to make great plays. He made some with his arms, he made some third downs running around, and when the game was at its ultimate spot that's where he rose to the occasion. That play he made right there, guys just don't make that play. That's why he is what he is, the great player that he is. A lot of credit to him, he was very impressive."
(on what went right and wrong) "I thought we contained him for the most part. We gave up some yardage. I don't have it all in front of me to look at, but they ran the ball pretty good on us which we had been stopping the run. They ran for 218, of course a lot of that was on the last play. You've got to stop the run with them or they can stay on the field the whole day. They were a different defense for us with (Titan's RT Albert) Haynesworth on the field. It caused us some problems inside. We had ourselves some very poor third down situations as a football team, in the first half especially. We came out and started running the ball well. The first drive of the second half was excellent. I thought we were doing some good things. We just needed to stay on the field and turn one of those turnovers into seven and not six."
(on the defensive strategy of the final play) "We were being aggressive. We were in some form of man coverage, some type of man under. They've got a kicker who just hit a 60 yarder last week, so I think the field goal would have been 56 if they don't get a yard. I might be off a yard or two. Then you wonder if Jeff (Fisher) tries it or does he pin us back there? I don't know. I can't answer that for him. You've got to continue to be aggressive there because if they dump the ball on you there and get ten then kick a field goal that's not very smart. We were aggressive, we just didn't make the play on the field."
(on Texans' RB Wali Lundy) "If we're going to throw and catch and be in more of a two minute situation we're going to get Wali more involved catching the ball in the backfield and doing those types of things. He's also excellent at protection."
(on Texans' RB Ron Dayne) "He's playing well. He's healthy. He's a load to bring down. He did some good stuff for us. Once again, we probably should have fed him some more. The kid has done some good stuff. He's been a reason why we had a chance to win last week and we had a chance to win today. He's done a good job and hopefully will continue to do that.
(on the play of Texans' QB David Carr)"I thought he did a pretty good job. We didn't turn the ball over all day I don't think. When you don't turn the ball over in this league, you've got a chance to win and that was evident today. We're struggling getting down the field. We've got to find a way up front to help them protect, help some guys up front, get the field stretched a little more. We are struggling from that standpoint right now, and it's just something we've got to continue to grind on the next few weeks and try to get better at. I thought he managed the ball game well. He got his team in position. That last third down, we should make that play. We should stay on the field right there and have a chance to win. I think David did his job but as players and coaches sometimes you've got to do a little more than your job, and that counts for all of us. We needed to do a little bit more to find a way to win."
(on tying the game) "That's a huge play in the game because if we stay on the field right there we hopefully get a chance to score right there and end the game on the field. It ended up being third and two. It looked like he (Texans' WR Andre Johnson) tried to make a special play, came backwards, tried to make somebody miss. In hindsight, you coach him to just get the first down, just get up field, but he'll learn from that. He was trying to make a play and then right there we had to make the smart decision to tie the game up. (Texans' K) Kris (Brown) has been pretty good."
(on Texans' K Kris Brown) "He's kicked the ball well. He had some big kicks today. When (Titans' KR) Pacman (Jones) came in for the kick-off return with two minutes left, Kris really placed an absolutely perfect ball. We were trying to get it out of his hands and put it in that kid's hands on the sideline. That kid let the ball hit, and unfortunately, it goes out of bounds for them. It could have been a great turnover for us and a chance to win the game. I thought he kicked the ball well for the most part."
(on Titans' KR Adam Jones overtime kick-off return) "It didn't look like his best, but that's a pretty good guy back there. At that point there's no hiding, you've got to kick it to him, you've got to cover, you've got to make a play , and the kid made a good play reversing his field."
(on how he feels after the game) "I feel bad after any time I get beat. I feel bad today because that was a hell of a football game. The stadium was as good as it's been since I've been here. I thought our crowd was tremendous. I was very excited about that, our players were. It was a hard fought, great football game. But we did not make the play to finish. That's why we're here, to make that play, and when we make that play we'll start winning our share of games. We're going to wake up tomorrow and keep going back to work to do that. All the credit should go to them and their football team and the job that Jeff (Fisher) has done. All the credit to that kid for making a great play."
(on the ability to stretch the field) "I would say that we're struggling a little bit in being able to stand back there and stretch the field, so we're having to do some things coaching-wise to give our team a chance to win. We've got some new people up front playing, and they're doing a good job, playing hard. One strength of our football team right now is not to take a seven step drop and sit back there and hold the ball for a while. As you can see, bad stuff happens to us when we do that and it did early. We have to find some other things to do, and I felt like we did find some things. We just didn't find enough."
DE Jason Babin
(on his feeling during QB Vince Young's touchdown run) "That was the worst feeling you could have in the pit of your stomach, seeing him run by for the touchdown to win the game."
(on the defense's performance against Young before the last play) "He had a couple of runs here and there, definitely ones we could live with. But then he goes and does something like that at the end of the game to win it for his team."
(on the loss) "This one really hurt. It seems like there was a lot of emotion in this game, and it hurt to have it close out like that."
QB David Carr
(on how tough the loss was) "Yeah, that was a hard one. Just because, you know, when you go for 60 minutes and then play knotted up, and then, I'm not going to say the luck of the toss…but they made their plays, and they made their plays to win the game, but you kind of just feel like you want a shot. And taking nothing away from our defense or what they did or their offense. It's just one of those things where you wish you could have a chance."
(on being on the sideline in overtime) "You know you wish you played defensive end. I mean everybody wants to help. Everyone on the sideline just pumping (guys up). The guys on the field are just giving everything; I mean our defense played lights out. They have these last two or three months; they have kept us in games, and they have done what they can. It's just like an empty feeling. At then end of the game you're like, 'Well I guess we lost.' You know, it's just so frustrating."
* (on whether this is a low point for the Texans)* "It's a loss, man. It hurts because we didn't win, but we have the Patriots next week, so we have to worry about them. It's not something…it's going to be great for you all writing some stories and then it's going to be phenomenal and congratulations to the Titans and their team and Vince (Young) and all those guys. But at the same time we have to move on. We can't just hang our heads and just be defeated by this. It is something we have to bounce back from."
(on kneeling to end regulation) "That's Coach Kubiak's call, but at the same time you have to realize we didn't have any timeouts, (and) we're 95 yards away from end zone. We'd have to work the sidelines if we were to throw it, and when we're dropping back I'd be in the end zone. And they were doing a good job pass rushing today. There were many times that I just had to get up and get out of there early. It was a good judgment call by him just taking a knee and going to overtime. And then you just think we should get a shot, but we're looking at the luck of the coin toss. But again, I don't want to take anything away from them; they made the plays."
(on what were the problems with the offense today) "Yeah, I think we did everything we were able to do today, to tell you the truth, as far as what they were giving us and how well they played on defense and just with their great pass rush. I can't think of too many plays that we left out there. We tried to get everything we could, and that got us to overtime. But we just didn't make enough to win the game."
(on whether he would like to pass deeper) "Yeah, definitely. Oh, totally. But a lot of times they don't give you that opportunity; they'll roll a safety over the top. The one time I didn't throw it to (WR) Andre (Johnson) it was maybe the second time they played single coverage on him the entire game. And we just happened to call the right play there so we could throw it up. It's one of those (where) you throw it in the end zone and see if you can make a play. I have done that numerous times where he has. Sometimes they knock it done. That's just what happened."
(on the timeout called at 2:14) "2:14? I think I called the timeout at the line of scrimmage? Yeah, we had a run called and it was a pretty bad look. So I just called timeout."
(on the fans today) "Yeah, you know what, I didn't know what to expect coming in there, but our crowd was great. The fans were rooting for the Texans; it was phenomenal. They stood up for us; they cheered when they were supposed to cheer. They did what they were supposed to do. There's definitely going to be some Longhorn fans, some Titans fans, and that's fine. They have ever right to do that. But our Texans fans were impressive today because when we needed them most in the fourth quarter getting to get it into overtime and get that ball back, they were unbelievable. It was a loud as it ever has been here."
(on how he feels he responded too the negative press this week) "I just try to respond the way I know how to respond, just go out and show the guys the charisma that I've got, and just help them win a game. I know no other way to play football. Just give everything that I have and do everything possible to move my team down the field. And we still lost the game, so that's tough. But I hope when we walk in here to watch that film, I hope that they don't think that I left anything out there. And I know that is the case, and I know that's going to be the case for a lot of guys that were out there on that field with me. They didn't leave anything out there."
(on whether he dreaded losing the game again QB Vince Young) "You know what, it's tough because you lose the game, but the stories have been there for a long time, so we don't have to worry about that. That's something that's been hyped up and pumped up long before this game. And they're going o be here as long as Vince plays for the Titans. And you just have to deal with it. That's not why we lost. I looked across the field and I saw 53 and (Adam) 'Pacman' Jones. And we didn't score enough points, but hats off to them. They did a great job."
(on the third and goal pass to WR Andre Johnson) "It's just one of those plays. We were trying to hit a play over the top. And against they just took it away. We were trying to throw a post over the top and just end the game right there. You know, and the offensive line actually did a great job on that play, just holding up long enough that where I could look down there, just kind of dropped it down to Andre and just coming up short. Its tough, but then (K) Kris (Brown) made the field goal, so we're good."
(on the protection today) "We had put in some protections where we were keeping some guys in, just making sure it was at least where I could get back and get set and kind of see one or two guys and then get it out. And they did a great job. We even… some of those protections we came out in the second half, and really in the second quarter they ended up running some pretty good games upfront, some stunts, and they beat them. But it was better than last week, obviously."
(on what he thought when Titans QB Vince Young broke the line of scrimmage) "As a quarterback you watch the game, and you see what coverage they are in. I'm sure that Vince saw the same thing. And you kind of look at the routes developing and realize that we had the routes covered up. I'm not going to speak on what defense we were in, but he just made a great play. He ran by a couple guys. As soon as he broke the line of scrimmage, just based on the coverage…he did a good job."
(on Titans QB Vince Young) "Yeah, he did what he had to do to win the game. He got the ball in overtime and took his team down and won the game. Honestly, it's as simple as that. We play to 20-20, and we're sitting there like we're in a football game; we have 15 minutes, we go back and forth. It was tough just standing there."
RB Ron Dayne
(on the loss) "It was a tough one. We took them to overtime, but we couldn't find a way to pull it off. Hopefully we can get it done next week."
(on his performance) "The line is doing their job, and I'm just out there running. The fullback (Vonta Leech) came in playing great, and he was knocking people out. I just have to run the ball."
(on the team's performance to this point of the season) "We've lost a lot of close games. We just have to keep working together and we'll get better."
(on what Coach Kubiak said after the game) "He told us to keep our heads up and keep working; we're going in the right direction."
WR Andre Johnson
(on the loss) "It is frustrating when you lose, period. This one is no different from the others. We have chances to win them, but we don't."
(on his third down catch in the fourth quarter that lead to the tying field goal) "I'm out there playing. I caught the ball and I was turned sideways. I didn't want to stop and cut back across the field. I just wanted to get as much as I could, and we didn't get the first down. But, we still got the field goal and took them to overtime."
(on the Texans running game) "We ran the ball better today. We had one drive where we pretty much ran the ball every down. It is pretty much the same thing. We just have to be more consistent."
(on whether the Texans had extra motivation playing against Titans QB Vince Young) "When we play every game we're motivated to win. I'm pretty sure the guys were hyped up a little more because of all the hype (about Titans QB Vince Young) and everything. But, when we're playing against Tennessee, it's always a big game. It's like a rivalry. They were here (in Houston), and now we're here."
(on what the offense can do to improve) "All we can do is keep working. That's pretty much all we can do. We've been struggling, but all we can do is keep working to make it better."
DE N.D. Kalu
(on Titans' QB Vince Young) "I never wanted to give Vince Young his props or the recognition he deserves, but he made me a believer on that last play."
(on the last play of the game) "(Defensive coordinator Richard Smith) had a good call. I think their offensive line did a real good job blocking the blitz, and (Young) saw that seam and he just took it. That's the difference between Vince Young and a normal quarterback. With anybody else, that would have been a five or six yard gain, but he took it to the house and won the game."
(on the loss) "It hurts, because it was a hard-fought game and we really felt like we were going to win that one."
(on his reaction to the last play) "It was one of those plays where, when it's over, I really didn't know how to react. I didn't know if I wanted to throw my helmet or cry. It just took all the wind out of me. That was the last play you wanted to happen, for him to run it in for a touchdown."
(on the disappointment of losing in overtime) "We really felt like we could win it. The fans were behind us, which I didn't expect. I thought they were going to have more fans. I was really happy about the Houston fans coming out and supporting us. That's what made it so tough – the fans came out and supported us and we didn't get them that win."
(on the defensive play call on Young's winning scramble) "Coach Smith is an aggressive play caller. He's like Jim Johnson. He's not afraid of anything. If we did our job and tackled (Young), then coach looks like a genius. But we didn't do our job."
DE Antwan Peek
(on Titans QB Vince Young's last play) "He made it happen for his team."
(on his feeling during the last play) "It was one of the worst feelings you could possibly have. It was an absolute nightmare."
(on being up 7-6 at the half) "It felt good. We felt good about it because we had only give un six points on two field goals."
* CB Dunta Robinson*
(on the loss) "It's not a good feeling. Out of all the ways to lose a game, that is how we lost it. It's not a good feeling at all. That's all I can say about it. We played too hard to lose this football game. You have to take your hat off because they made the plays when they had to."
(on the last play of the game) "I came on the blitz and one of the offensive linemen picked me up. I just saw him (Titans' QB Vince Young) take off through the middle of the field and I was praying that someone would come across and tackle him to force a field goal to win the game, but that's the way we lost it. You have to accept it and come back tomorrow, watch the film and correct out mistakes."
(on Titans' QB Vince Young) "If he is from the city, what a way to win a football game. I'm pretty sure he feels great and the people that came to support him feel great. You have to tip your hat to him because he made a play at the moment that he had to make a play."
(on what he felt the last play) "It felt like it was in slow motion, the whole thing. It took forever to unfold. Like a bad dream. It is a sick feeling. It's a bitter feeling and you will probably think about this until you see them next year. We had every opportunity to win the football game – on both sides of the football, it just didn't happen today."
(on this being just another loss) "No, it's not just another loss when you play this hard. You thought Buffalo was the worst thing that could happen. When we lost to Buffalo, but to have them 3 rd and 15, tie game in overtime and let the quarterback run right up the field? This is even worse then how we lost in Buffalo."
* LB DeMeco Ryans*
(on QB Vince Young scoring the game winning play) "That's what he is good at. He's a great player, who makes great plays when need be. He proved that today and led his team to another victory"
(on this game leaving a sick feeling) "Definitely. Who wouldn't have a sick feeling after a game like this? We fought and fought. To lose a game this game the way we did leaves a very sick feeling in my stomach."
(on the last play of the game) "I thought (Young) was going to throw the ball, so I put my hands up and he tucked it and took off."
(on having the Titans at 3 rd and 14) "3 rd and 14 is great, but we didn't win the game. We didn't stop them. It's great to be in that situation, but we've got to make a play and stop them and get off the field."
* DE Anthony Weaver*
(on the Texans' defensive call on the last play) "(Defensive coordinator Richard Smith) is always aggressive. Whenever you sit back and try to be passive, that's when the big plays happen. We were just unfortunate that in this particular instance we were playing against Vince Young, and he went out there and made a play with his legs."
(on the last play) "Nine times out of 10, we're going to make that play and get off the field. It was that one time. Great players make great plays, and there's no doubt that Vince Young is a great player."
(on QB Vince Young) "He was bottled up all game, it just so happened that the call that we had at the end there was a gap that was there and he saw it. Actually, we made the same call twice and I guess he just realized it. He just took off."
(on this game being different than others) "It's just the same thing, you just have to go out and play hard."
(on the loss) "It is tough to lose any game, especially this one because it was in overtime. There were plays during regulation that we could have finished the game and been done with it. We have to make those plays so we won't be in that position."
(on proving something today) "We were just trying to go out and play our hearts out."