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Texans Quotes: September 26


Head Coach Gary Kubiak** RB Arian Foster
WR Andre Johnson
FS Ed Reed
DE Antonio Smith

Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(opening statement) "K. Jack (Kareem Jackson) still did not practice. He is expected to practice tomorrow. J. Jo (Johnathan Joseph) did not practice. He is expected to practice tomorrow. (Darryl) Sharpton's the same, same way, did not practice today. (Duane) Brown did a little bit, did some individual, took a few team reps. So hopefully we're doing more tomorrow, we'll see. OD (Owen Daniels) was back to work full- time. Garrett (Graham) was back to work. Andre (Johnson) did individual only. Wade Smith was back to his normal routine for Thursday and (Tim) Dobbins is still out. That's where we're at."

(on if T Duane Brown and WR Andre Johnson are still game-time decisions for Sunday) "Oh, I think so, yeah. Hopefully, we get some of these guys on the field tomorrow, but I think it's going to be heading towards that way."

(on if T Duane Brown has to play the entire game or if he would be willing to play him in spot duty) "We'll play him if he can play at his level. We're not going to put Duane in a real bad position. We've got to see him being capable of doing things he's capable of doing. If he plays, he would go to play full-time. It's not like he would play and we would pull him out every 20 plays. So we'll see where he's at tomorrow."

(on Seattle's defense getting more publicity and if that's motivating to the defense) "I can't answer that for the players, but I think naturally, in this business, everybody knows what's going on, players around the league. And they've been tremendous the first three weeks. We've been pretty good. We've had our moments where that hasn't been the case, but we've been pretty good. We need to get more turnovers. It's important that our team's going to have to play well in this football game. It's not going to be about one side of the ball. We're going to have to play really, really well as a football team, special teams included. But I'm sure they're challenged and they're working really good. Had a couple of good days of work."

(on if the team has gotten to the quarterback as much as he would like) "Well, I think that we've done a pretty good job. We've played some teams that, the game's we've been in, they've been trying to get out of the games. So not a lot of throwing. We haven't had them in the compromising position we've been in as a football team offensively. With those positions, more sacks should come, so hopefully we can change the way we've been playing the last three weeks, the rhythm of the game and what's going on. I think we will get there more, but I think we've done some good things. Obviously, J.J. (Watt's) done some good things. Whitney (Mercilus) has played pretty good. (Brian) Cushing's played extremely well. I think we're off to a decent start. You can always do things better."

(on if they went to colleges to see teams practice the read-option) "We didn't go anywhere, but we studied the heck out of it. Obviously, we, as coaches, know all of the coaches that do that stuff and we talk to them all of the time. Just tried to study a lot of ball, tried to study what's going on around the league. We implemented it in camp and worked on it a great deal in training camp. Obviously, it's time to face it for not only one week, but for two weeks in a row. It's a huge challenge. It's an extra factor back there with the quarterback being able to run the ball. So it will be a big challenge for us."

(on the Packers going to Texas A&M to study the read option and if they did the same thing) "I couldn't sit here and tell you who Wade (Phillips) talks to on a weekly basis, but I could say that I just know that we studied the heck out of it and we implemented it in training camp so we could get ahead. We're not a read-option team, but we put it in so our defense would have to work on it. Tried to do everything we can to prepare for it too."

(on not liking the tempo last week and how to go about changing the tempo) "I was talking more about the huddle and stuff. We had some communication problems. I think I mentioned that. Our headsets went out for a portion of the game and we didn't respond to that very good. So we have to be prepared to do that. That's more of what I was talking about than anything. As far as the tempo, obviously, we need to still on the field better. That creates tempo, you making some third downs. It's just overall play is what I'm talking about. My reference at that point was about the headsets."

(on when the headsets went out against Baltimore) "What quarter was it? Was it the second? Was it late in the second quarter? We had problems with it in the third quarter again. That happens on the road. You've got to be able to adjust to it. It's part of the league."

(on if he can shed any light on the statuses of CBs Kareem Jackson and Johnathan Joseph) "No, I expect them both to practice tomorrow. J. Jo's got a sore toe. Kareem's been sick, but I think he's doing much better today. He stood back there with me in practice, so he was very involved. I think he's feeling a lot better, so I expect them on the field tomorrow."

(on if visiting headsets have ever gone out here) "I don't know. I'm not on the other side, so I don't know."

(on how you're supposed to respond when the headsets go out and if the team practices that) "Yeah, we do. Obviously, we can talk. We can get Matt (Schaub) over to us. We can use hand signals. We can relay players. We can do whatever we have to do. But it's something you always have to be prepared for in this league and it can happen at the drop of a hat. You're in the middle of a play call and you're talking, I think we used a timeout. You saw us where we're giving Matt plays in the huddle. We assume he's got the play. All of a sudden, he steps out of the huddle and he says, 'I never head a thing.' That's something that you've got to be able to handle and we didn't do a very good job that day."

(on if the team has done anything different in practice as a result of penalties) "I believe in practicing those things. You could have punishments, but I believe in practicing mistakes. If you've got a problem going offsides, you need to go out and work on the hard count and do that. So we've focused on that all week in what we're doing. We're practicing with noise defensively all day long with our hands. If we've got a problem that, then we're repeating plays if we think we're holding people. So we're going to practice things we're doing wrong."

(on going against Seattle's pass rush) "Well, the best thing we can do is run the ball, stay on schedule. That's the best thing we can do and not get down two scores, like we did in Baltimore. Yeah, when you play those people, like you said, last week, you've got two edges and (Terrell) Suggs plays on both sides. So it's not like, 'Hey, I'm going to be on the left all day. How are you going to protect against me?' He moves around. This team (has) tremendous speed and is really good inside. Red Bryant's playing extremely well for them. This team gets to the quarterback probably as good as anybody in the game with their speed. It'll get back to us running the ball."

(on helping out both offensive tackles) "Yeah, it's always nice to help those guys out, but you've got to beat coverage too. You start keeping everybody in and chipping everybody, then you're back there holding the ball and nobody's beating coverage. So there's a fine line there when you do it and how much you do it. In fairness to them, when you're sitting back there when you drop back 40 times, something like that, you better find a way to get them some help every now and then."

(on this is an opportunity for a statement game this week like the Seahawks had two weeks ago against the 49ers) "I think every game's a statement game in this league. I think every game's big. Every game's tough. Like I said, my focus is on us and how we play. It's a very good team coming into our place. We need our place to be loud. We need our fans more than ever. We need them good and loud this weekend. Every week, I think you've got a chance in this league as a team to step up and play well and say I'm a good football team. So this is chance number four for us to do that."

Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips
(on Seattle QB Russell Wilson) "Russell Wilson, he came on the scene last year big time and has continued that. I think he's a proven winner already as a young quarterback. He's officially a veteran; he's played three games this year, after last year. He's a big playmaker. He's a playmaker. Marshawn Lynch is really the catalyst for everything because he can run the ball and their offensive line runs the ball so well. The quarterback makes plays, scores points for them."

(on the defensive showdown between the league's No. 1 and No. 2 defenses)  "It is every week for us. Our challenge, every week, is to outplay the other team's defense. That's the way we approach it. We've got to hold them to less points than they hold our offense too, really. That's the name of the game. I've never been, 'Well, we've got to beat this team and if our offense doesn't do this.' That's not it. You never throw the blame to the other side of the ball. If our offense scores six, we have to hold them to three. That's the name of the game. That's our challenge every week. We don't change that."

(on if they look at the fact that Seattle has backup tackles playing in the game) "Well, we're aware of personnel. Personnel is a big part of the NFL game. Matchups and personnel are a big part of our gameplans and certainly adjustments during the game as to somebody being injured. We have to do it on our side if we get somebody banged up, to have somebody ready to go in the game. We also have to make adjustments, if they have somebody out, if their fast receiver is out or those kinds of things. Those are game time, game day adjustments."

(on if he talked to any college coaches or visited nay schools to learn about the read-option) "We know about the college game. We've been seeing that for a long time. I've gone through the wishbone, the option, the veer option, all those things. As football evolves, you have to keep yourself up with things. Both Reggie (Herring) and VJ (Vance Joseph) coached in college and coached against that option. It's not something new. It's something new in our league, but it's not something new or something we haven't seen before. I believe Carolina ran it when we played them a couple of years ago. We're starting to see it, so it's something you have to be aware of."

(on how he would evaluate Whitney Mercilus and Brooks Reed on the outside so far) "2-1. Those guys are playing hard. Whit got a $15,000 fine, but he's got a lot of hits and was part of the sack last week and had the sack the week before. I think he's rushing the passer real well. That's what we want him to do. It will be a challenge this week, obviously, with the quarterback being so mobile. You beat your guy this week, he's likely to jump out of there and make a play on you. So you have to make sure as you rush the passer, you keep your eyes on the quarterback. Those guys are good football layers. They play solid football for us. They aren't able to run the ball outside on us. Those two guys set the edge and we know if the running game goes, it's got to go inside. That's the first thing they do really well that may be overlooked, maybe not. Part of our run defense is those guys setting the edge for us."

(on if they had opportunities for turnovers last week in Baltimore) "We had a couple. We had two hit us last week for interceptions. We knocked a ball out and it bounced around the earth and their guy covered it. That's something you work on all the time. I've said before, they usually come more when you're ahead than when you're behind. Part of getting ahead is making those things happen. Turnovers are a week-to-week, game-by-game. They accumulate through the season, but if you have six in one game and you don't have any the next two games, it looks like you have a lot of turnovers every game, but you don't. It's how you do that game. It's how you play defense that game. You can be the number one or number two defense, but it's how you play that game. How we play this game is what we are. Overall, for the season, after 16 games, you can say, 'Yeah, we played consistently this or that.' After three games, it's hard to tell."

(on how Ed Reed played in his first game of the season last week) "He kind of just dipped his foot in the water. He was in the middle most of the time. They never got outside. They never made any running plays outside. There weren't any middle passes. He really had an uneventful game overall because they didn't make that much. They made some yards, but not very many. He was never able to be a factor because the only pass they had was outside, one big play and one short crossing route. That was the only two plays they had in the game. They had one run where they tackled (Brian) Cushing and got a 25-yard run, but he wasn't involved."

(on if FS Ed Reed's uneventful game was the result of Baltimore trying to stay away from him) "I don't know about that. They won the game by a hefty margin, so I'm sure they didn't thing about that."

(on Gary Kubiak talking about how much quicker FS Ed Reed looked in practice) "Yeah, he ran better this week. He showed full speed, I guess. I think he was more than three-quarter speed all along but he showed some full speed things today, yesterday and today that we hadn't seen."

(on if it has helped him to build that chemistry on the field with the defense) "I think it's just him getting confident and coming off an injury and playing. He hadn't played at all. He did fine for the first time out, but we want to see the Ed Reed that we think he is and I think he wants to do that too. I think the more he plays, the better he'll look."

(on if he is worried about his starting cornerbacks not practicing yet this week) "You always worry about that. We've got other guys that can play but we'll look tomorrow and see if they practice. I think both of them will practice tomorrow. That'll make us feeling a little better about what we're going to do."

(on if CB Johnathan Joseph's toe was an issue in the Baltimore game) "No."

(on what he sees from Seattle's defense) "I don't deal with them. I haven't' even looked at them. I wouldn't know."

RB Arian Foster
(on what stands out to him about Seattle's defense) "Dominance. They're a very dominant defense."

(on why Seattle's defense is dominant) "Because they execute well. They execute well. They're a dominant defense."

(on Seattle's speed on defense and how much that helps them be dominant) "Well, in the NFL, everybody's fast. This is the top of the top. I just feel like they play well together. They trust their scheme and they have great players for their scheme. They're a dominant defense."

(on Head Coach Gary Kubiak saying the offense needs to run the ball and to stay on schedule and what that means to him) "It means we've got to run the ball and stay on schedule."

(on the sense of urgency increasing in practice) "I guess you could say that, yeah. In practice, just trying to get the tempo a little faster and just keep energy going throughout practice."

(on if this game can be a statement game) "I don't really get into all of that. I just go week-by-week. The NFL's kind of like there is drama every week. There are some huge stories. I kind of stay out of all of that. We're just going to go play Sunday."

(on where he thinks the team is overall right now) "We have to go to work. The NFL's a long season. I've played on teams where you played great out of the gate and I've played on teams where we played okay out of the gate and then you fall off at the end. You've just got to maintain some kind of balance. That's what the NFL's all about. You can't ride the highs and lows. You've got to just kind of keep it even keel."

(on Seattle forcing a lot of turnovers and if that's something in the back of his mind) "No, I don't think about what they're doing. You can only focus on what you have to do. They're obviously a good defense. You know that going in, but that's what you play the game for is to play the best."

(on if he knew that the headsets went out last week during the game and how that impacts him) "It didn't impact me personally, but like it impacts how the quarterback gets the play in to the team. They don't talk to me through the headset, so it's like I didn't really notice a difference."

(on the headset going out last week and if that caused confusion) "Not personally. Not me. I didn't see any confusion out there, any additional confessional. I saw it when it happened, but the ball kept rolling."

(on if didn't think the headsets going out impacted what the offense was trying to do early) "I didn't think so. Maybe it did. I didn't even know you guys knew about it."

(on how he's feeling physically and if he's where he wants to be at this point in the season) "My body feels good. I'm ready to go whenever they want to let me go. I've just got to be patient and trust Coach (Gary Kubiak)."

(on if he's at the point where if the coaches wanted to increase his carries that he's ready to do that) "Yes."

(on the offense playing from beyond and how that affects the play calling and number of carries) "Yeah, any time you play from behind, you're going to get into a pass-happy offense. Then, you try to maintain a little bit of a balance to keep them honest, but, for the most part, you're going to air it out."

(on how important it is to establish the run early against Seattle) "Well, I think when you're going against a defense like this, you've got to wear them down and you've just got to be physical. They like to establish their physicality on teams. They like to intimidate people with their physical nature. I think this is going to be one of those dog fights where we've got to let them know we're in here too."
(on if he likes the type of games that are very physical) "That's what you play for."

(on if he noticed about college football players last week taking a stand against the NCAA) "A couple of people have mentioned it to me because I don't really watch college football like that. A couple of mentioned it. I thought it was an awesome gesture on their part. They don't really understand or fully grasp the power that they hold in their hands if they all decided not to play on a Saturday. It would be a pretty powerful statement. I think, if things like that start to show their head, I think it'll really get people talking about it. And that was my whole intentions behind it anyways, just getting people to talk about it and they are."

WR Andre Johnson
(on his status for Sunday) "Right now, I feel like I'll play. It's a process still. Going out today and running routes and stuff, I guess when you have a bruise like that, a bad bruise like that, when you're just sitting around, I think when you get up and move around a little bit, it kind of helps it out and loosens it up. I felt a little better. I've been feeling better day-by-day. Like I said, running routes and stuff today helped out a little bit. Hopefully, it will just keep getting better day-by-day."

(on Seattle's secondary) "All of them are big, (Brandon) Browner, (Richard) Sherman. The smallest guy is Earl Thomas. But they're a very good group. I think their front and back end work very well together. I think that's why they're very successful at what they do. As far as the corner backs, very big, long guys, good foot speed. They're very aggressive. Normally when you go against big, long guys like that, they don't have to be close to you just to touch you. It kind of throws you off a little bit with timing and stuff like that, but, at the same time, you've seen that guys are able to make plays on them and stuff like that. It'll be a challenge. It'll be a big challenge for us and we're looking forward to it."

(on if he senses that he'll be a game-time decision and if it'll go up to Sunday until he knows for sure) "I'm not sure. I don't know. It just depends on how I feel. Like I said, I've been feeling better day-by-day. I think today, like I said, running helped me out a little bit. We'll see. Like I said, I plan on playing and that's the way I'm approaching it. We'll see what happens."

(on if he's at risk at making it worse with this kind of injury) "No, I don't think I've done anything to make it worse. Just when I was out there running today, I didn't feel like I was (making it worse). The first thing they told me was to just be smart about it and I wasn't going to do anything if I felt like it was making me feel any worse. As I went along, I didn't feel any worse. I feel like things got a little better, kind of woke the muscle up some just because I've been sitting around."

(on if he has a deep muscle bruise and if the medical staff doesn't consider there to be any shin damage) "No, there's not shin damage. I just have a real bad bruise right on the muscle. I caught the ball and was going down and one of the guys that was trying to tackle me kneed me."

(on if the injury occurred on a football play) "Yeah, it was nothing intentional. Those are the things that make you frustrated because it doesn't look like anything. That next play I was limping and it didn't get any better. Like I said, I'm doing everything I can to make sure I'm out on the field Sunday. I look forward to playing."

(on if Seattle's secondary is unique) "Yeah, you don't see guys of that size, where all of them are big like that in the secondary. Like I said, they're a great group and they work well together. You look at them and they're very disciplined in everything that they do. It's very rare that you find that where a team is very disciplined in what they do in their coverage and things like that. It'll be a big challenge. We know that. We're looking forward to it."

(on Seattle having defensive backs as big as him) "That's different, but that's what you've got to love about the game. It's a great game and you get to go against the best. This is a great group we get to against on Sunday."

(on Seattle CB Richard Sherman and having the reputation as a trash talker and if he thinks that he'll try to get into his head) "I don't really worry about that. I'm not a trash talker. Everybody has way they play the game. I've played against trash talkers before. That doesn't bother me, so I'm not worried about that."

(on Seattle's CBs maybe trying to get into the young receiver's heads and if he'll talk to them about that) "They haven't faced anybody that really has talked to them. I'll just let them know to not let them try to distract them form their game. You've just got to go out and play. They can talk all they want to. You can't talk, but if you're not producing, it doesn't really matter. That's the way look at it."

(on QB Matt Schaub always being accountable and what that means to the team that he always takes that approach) "For the position that he plays, no matter what happens, he's going to get all of the criticism anyways. If you're the head coach or the quarterback, that's part of the job. I don't think that there's a guy that's in this locker room that, if something bad happens, they're going to take criticism for it. That's just the type of guys we have around here. I think, when you do stuff like that, it just makes you stronger as a person and it makes you go out and play better."

(on if it makes the team stronger when a guy like QB Matt Schaub steps up and is always accountable) "Yeah, that's just part of it. Matt doesn't intentionally go out and tries to have bad things happen. No one does. No one's perfect. The great thing about this game is that you have bad games, everybody has them, but it's just about the way you bounce back. It's a chance to bounce back on Sunday."

(on how important it is for the team to respond after last week's game) "It's always about how you respond. When you win, how do you respond from a victory? How do you respond form a loss? We suffered our first loss last week and it wasn't a good feeling. The way it happened wasn't good. Everybody will be looking to see how we respond."

FS Ed Reed
(on what he thinks about Seattle QB Russell Wilson) "You've got to have eyes on him at all times. He can run and throw the ball, which always poses a problem a defense. With a scrambling quarterback, you've got to make sure you stay in coverage. At the same time, you want to make sure he gets down and not make a lot of yards."

(on where he is right now physically) "I'm good. I'm good. I've still got a little soreness there, but it's a lot better than it has been. But I'm ready to go."

(on how much more comfortable he feels this week compared to last week since he has played in a game) "There was a little soreness at first or whatnot, but I'm feeling good as times goes by. I'm still doing the rehab stuff. I've got to continue to get stronger. As the weeks go by, it'll get a lot better."

(on playing with new teammates last week and if there was a defense) "Last week was a little different, being that I knew all of those guys and it was a little weirder than I thought. At the same time, I knew what my responsibility was. We pretty much executed as best as we could. We had to make a lot of corrections this week, Monday, which we did to move forward and get better. You can't win them all. We know that now and we've moved forward and we're focused on this week."

(on how much forcing turnovers is a factor in this game) "Yeah, it's huge. It's huge in all games. Whoever wins the turnover battle usually wins the game in some cases. It's something that we've been focusing on the whole season. We know we have to pick that up. But they will come. They will come and, once they do, they tend to come in bunches. It's something we have to work on in practice, which we do. We have to take advantage of our opportunity when we get to play in the game."

(on what you can do as a player to be more opportunistic when it comes to turnovers) "You have study tape. You have to study tape. You have to know the game plan. Know exactly what the coaches are asking form you in order to put yourself into position. Just running to the football. Half the time when you're running to the football you tend to make more plays giving that extra effort."

(on if this is a statement game for the team) "It's early in the season, but it can be. This is a potential Super Bowl matchup. We've got go out there like we have been practicing our system and execute our game plan as best as possible."

(on if he relishes the number one versus number two defensive battle this week) "Of course, but we're not playing against their defense. We're playing against their offense and we've got to execute our plan to give our team the best opportunity to win on offense and special teams."

(on if he likes facing Seattle the week before the team faces the 49ers because of the read option) "Not even thinking about the 49ers right now. It's all about Seattle. Well cross that bridge once we get there."

(on Seattle RB Marshawn Lynch) "Oh man, he's a beast. I've got a lot of respect for Marshawn for a long time. He's a great player and definitely brings some extra excitement to their offense. That's somebody you've got to have eyes on as well because he's a game wrecker. If you let him get starter, he can be a bowling ball the whole day."

(on Seattle QB Russell Wilson being mobile but also able to look down field as he scrambles and how much that impacts the secondary) "Yeah, it's not our job to stop him in the run. We've got a lot of great D-linemen and linebackers who will force him to throw the ball. Our thing is that you won't beat us with your feet. It's just when the ball is in there. Our job is to stop the ball, stop the plays when he does break past the line of scrimmage, but mainly when he throws the ball in the air. That's when we've got to give him problems."

DE Antonio Smith
(on playing from behind and how that affects the defense) "Playing from behind, it kind of limits the amount of opportunities you get to rush against the passer. Most teams would like to run when they're up, but, if you're there within stirring distance, teams can still drop back and pass the ball."

(on if he relishes the number one versus number two defensive battle this week) "Yes. I think they do too. Everybody wants to be number one at something. Their defense is pretty good defense. I know they enjoy being the number one defense and we want to be the number one defense. It's going to be fun. It's like an epic battle."

(on how much forcing turnovers is a focus) "It's a big focus. We've been practicing all week. We're determined to get more turnovers and I think that turnovers are a big game changer. When you get turnovers in the game, it can make your team make a turn for the better no matter what adversity you have faced earlier in the game."

(on how difficult it is to contain someone like Seattle QB Russell Wilson) "It's very difficult because you normally just trying to beat offensive linemen and rush the passer and not worrying about him being mobile to out run you enough around the edge. When you're pass rushing and you've got your DBs covering, there's like at least 10-15 yards before anybody else, if he gets past you, before anybody else can get to him."

(on what it's going to be like going against a physical running back like Seattle RB Marshawn Lynch) "Fun. I always like going against the best, especially guys like Marshawn Lynch. He plays the game with passion. I like the way he plays the game, so it's going to be fun to hit him."

(on if this game is a statement game for the team) "I wouldn't necessarily say it's a statement game. It's the next game on the schedule is what it is. I think that we've got to take that approach and not sit and consume ourselves with worrying about what the Seahawks record is and how good they're playing right now. Focus more on the team that we need to be that we know we are."

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