The toughest part of an incredibly tough night for the Texans, happened on the game's sixth play from scrimmage.
After the Texans' defense forced a 3-and-out from the Cowboys' offense, Houston's offense picked up a first down courtesy of a defensive holding penalty. The play after, running back Lamar Miller was injured.
Miller, a beloved and highly-respected teammate, hit the turf in Arlington with an apparent leg injury. The Texans would ultimately fall, 34-0, to the Cowboys. But seeing Miller carted off the field was the worst part of the night for his teammates and his head coach.
"That was hard," Bill O'Brien said. "He’s just an awesome guy. He’s meant a lot to me personally and it’s just a tough thing to see."
Player after player described how difficult it was to see Miller, a Pro Bowler in 2018, go down with the injury.
"Anybody gets hurt, it’s tough," quarterback Deshaun Watson said. "But he’s one of the guys that bring a lot of energy and a lot of power to this team. It’s tough to see him go off on the cart. I prayed for him. We’ll be there for him every step of the way.”
Defensive end J.J. Watt, who saw his 2016 and 2017 seasons end early due to back and knee issues, said injuries "are the worst part of our game." He gave a perspective on who Miller is as a player, and a person.
"It is so tough," Watt said. "He is an important piece of our puzzle. He is a guy we all love. We love having him out there and competing with all of us side by side. You just hate to see it."
Right tackle Seantrel Henderson was a teammate of Miller's for a few seasons at the University of Miami (FL). Seeing his teammate go down, a year after he was felled by an ankle injury in Week 1, hurt.
"That’s one of my guys," Henderson said. "We take care of them. We protect them. We never want to see anybody go down like that That was tough for us."
After Miller exited, Josh Ferguson, Damarea Crockett and Karan Higdon split the carries at the running back position for the Texans.
Houston hosts the Los Angeles Rams on Thursday night at NRG Stadium.
Houston Texans travel to AT&T Stadium for the third preseason game against the Dallas Cowboys.