Head Coach Gary Kubiak**
ILB Brian Cushing
WR Andre Johnson
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on any injury updates) "Duane (Brown) looks go to go. He's practiced all week. He's ready to go. Andre (Johnson), unless there's a set back or something tomorrow, looks fine. He took a lot more today in practice. We're heading in the right direction right there. Two guys that we will rule out today are Tim Dobbins and Brandon Brooks. Brandon will not be ready to go. Obviously, Ben (Jones) will start for Brandon. Cush (Brian Cushing) is fine and actually Cush has cleared protocol and is ready to play. He's good, took all his stuff he normally takes and ready to go."
(on G/C ben Jones playing last week and getting the start this week) "Ben's reasoning last week was strictly reps on Wade (Smith), and Wade coming off the knee surgery. That was strictly just to take 15-20 plays off of Wade. That was what was going on there. As it ended up, that's probably a good thing now because he's fixing to go play hopefully about 70 or 80 plays. We've got a lot of confidence in him. He played a lot of football for us last year, played in a lot of big games. Ben can play two spots for us. Obviously, Cody White will be up. He moves up a notch and has a dual role to carry. But we've got confidence in Ben. He's played a lot of football."
(on how players have responded during the course of this week) "It's been good. It's a long week. When you get beat in this league, it's a very long week. But I thought we practiced very well today, very upbeat. (San Francisco is a) tough team to prepare for on both sides of the ball. We handled noise pretty good all week long. We're prepared. We could probably use a little extra rest. We'll get some playing Sunday night. So I think we could probably use a little bit of that. We've got a long trip ahead of us, tough football game, but we've prepared for it well."
ILB Brian Cushing
(on being back on the field for Sunday's game against the 49ers) "Pretty much assumed the whole time I would be (back on the field). Obviously, I'm excited to play. I don't want to miss a game."
(on if he second guesses anything when it comes to concussions with all the attention surrounding them currently) "I think it's pretty common sense that concussions aren't a good thing for you. Obviously there could be problems afterwards, but that's why they're so precautious now and there are so many steps to come back on the field, to make sure you're fully medically cleared. We understand the risks of playing this game and it may lead to certain things later, but for right now, we have to be smart. If pass through the protocol, then I'm good to return to the field."
(on if he has ever dealt with a concussion before) "No."
(on what it was like dealing with a concussion for the first time) "It was OK. It was very, very mild. It wasn't too severe or anything. There wasn't any after effects or residual pains or anything like that. Besides the first five minutes, I was pretty good the entire time."
(on being able to play having very limited practice time this week) "It's fine. As long as I get a little bit of work, that's fine. I fully practiced today and was sharper than ever, so I'm ready to go."
(on when the concussion happened and him removing himself from the game) "Yeah, some of that I've never really experienced before. I thought maybe I would just be OK. Maybe just shake it off, but like I said, they are so precautious with the whole protocol and everything that's been going on with the NFL and concussions and lawsuits and everything like that. They are very careful and thorough with the whole procedure, so it was predetermined as soon as I had any symptoms that I was pretty much done for the day."
(on if he thinks he would've been so cautious if he didn't know what all we know today about concussions) "I think I pretty much would've been careful the entire time. It's definitely a different feeling and something that you know is a little off. I'm just happy that it did happen while I was in the NFL and I couldn't have received as a good of care as I would've. I'm sure there are certain programs out there that would just throw kids back out there and it's scary, especially at a younger age when kids are still developing. The brain is obviously something that you don't mess with. If it was to happen, I would want it to happen at this level, with this kind of care. I was kind of fortunate from that sense."
(on what it was like to have to watch the second half of the game last Sunday) "It was very, very frustrating, helpless. It got to a point where I obviously just stopped watching. There was nothing that I could've done so I just kind of shied away from it and hoped for the best, but it didn't happen."
(on not having any doubts about returning for the San Francisco game) "Yeah, yeah. There were some steps that I had to go through, but everything went real smooth. There were no setbacks or anything like that. Pretty much, the general consensus the whole time was that I would play."
(on the differences between Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson) "Very similar players. I think Colin may look to run a little bit more than Russell but both are very explosive playmakers that you have to know (where they're at) at all times. If the routes aren't open, they're going to take off and they are very fast."
(on some people saying the Texans have the best pass rush in football) "I think we have a pretty good defense overall. Pass rush, secondary, against the run, I think we're playing really well. I think we also know that we haven't played our best football yet, which is encouraging and something that we're looking to build upon as the season goes on."
(on how important is it that the Texans respond after losing the past two games) "It's extremely important, especially sitting at 2-2 and this is our next game, national spotlight, primetime game. This is a statement game that we need to go out and play our best football. We're playing against one of the better, tougher teams in the NFL that has been established by them. They're a very good football team and we need to bring our A-game."
(on if you could say it makes it tougher to be playing in San Francisco after a heart-breaking loss) "You could if you want to, but I think this is a mentally strong team, where you forget about it. The past is the past. We have to take care of this week and not worry about what happened last week."
WR Andre Johnson
(on his leg) "It's alright. I'm playing. That's all that matters."
(on if there are issues with his leg because he was limited in practice) "I was limited last week. I did the same thing I did last week. I'll be fine."
(on how important it is that the team responds well on Sunday) "It's very important. What's happened in the past is in the past. It's only about what you do with the next opportunity you get. It's a big stage. Sunday Night Football. We'll be ready."
(on if he's surprised that WR DeAndre Hopkins was named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month for September) "I wouldn't say it comes as a surprise. He's very talented. We knew that when he first got here. He's just working to become better. His hard work is paying off. When he gets opportunities, he makes plays. He was great at attacking the ball when he was up in the air and he's making big plays so far. Hopefully he can keep that up."
(on WR DeAndre Hopkins winning offensive rookie of the month and if he can reflect on his first month in the league) "It was just a different level than college. You have to learn some things on the fly. That's the one thing that he has that I didn't have early is a veteran guy to really teach me much. Some things I had to learn on my own. I was just thrown into the fire as soon as I got here, kind of like he was. I can understand what he's going through and the things that are going through his head when he's out there playing. I just try to help him out as much as possible to make it as easy as possible."
(on his mindset of playing even when he's nicked and if it's about mind over matter) "I've just been able to play through some things throughout my career. That's pretty much it. I wouldn't say mind over matter. When you want to go out and help your team be successful, you put your pride to the side and go out there and do what you can do to help your team win. That's pretty much how I look at it. I don't really look at it any other way. I'm doing what I need to do to help this team win."
(on his message in the players only meeting) "When things are going bad, there's going to be a lot of criticism. I told them we're not in the worst situation. We're 2-2. Everybody's panicking like we're 0-4 or something. I just told them that, in order for us to get it done, it's going to take us. It's not going to take, the coaches put the game plan in, but we have to go out and execute plays. I told them that, like Coach (Gary) Kubiak saying that he took responsibility and stuff like that, I felt like that was a bunch of BS. Coach shouldn't have to come out and take responsibility for what happens on the field because he's not playing. Yeah, they do make the calls with the plays and stuff like that, but, at the same time, we have to go out and execute. That was pretty much it. I just told them, in order for us to get it done, we're going to have to get it done. We can't worry about what people say form the outside. People have their own opinions about whatever. That doesn't really matter. We just have to keep that tunnel vision and keep going forward."
(on if he re-aggravated his shin or is he still recovering from the initial injury) "No, I'm just recovering from the initial injury. I banged it up a little bit in the game last week. It had swollen back up again. It's still sore and stuff like that. What we did last week worked out real well as far as me being able to play. We just went with the same routine this week."