Training Camp Day 16: Notes and Quotes

“It feels unbelievable. The field, the gridiron, is my comfort zone.” Nick Martin on his first day back at practice

After their preseason win over the Detroit Lions, the Texans returned to practice on Monday. The team practiced inside the Houston Methodist Training Center and will begin preparations for the Dallas Cowboys this week.

"I do think the third game – we do game plan a little bit more but I don't know if there'll be a huge difference in how much guys play," head coach Bill O'Brien said after practice. "I'm not sure that there'll be like a huge difference relative to where we are health-wise and things like that. But we definitely will treat it more like a game week in preparation for the game."

Center Nick Martin made his training camp debut on Monday. Martin had not practiced with the team since the offseason workout program.

"You've got to knock the rust off, but when you're out, you have to stay mental, you have to go to meetings and keep those reps up with film everything else," Martin said.

Martin had been attending meetings and on the field for practice, taking mental reps over the last few weeks.

Rookie Tytus Howard will probably not practice this week, according to O'Brien. Howard left Saturday's preseason matchup against Detroit in the first half and did not return.

Matt Kalil, who did not play, could be back this week. Third-year offensive lineman Roderick Johnson started at left tackle in Kalil's absence against the Lions.

Nose tackle D.J. Reader missed time last week after tweaking his groin. Reader also practiced on Monday.

"It was good," Reader said. "It was good to get back out there with the guys. I've been missing them being on the sideline, so it was good to get back out there today."

Lamar Miller has been a full participant in camp, but has yet to see action in the preseason games. The Texans starting running back says he tries to make the most of his practice reps and pushes himself to be in great condition for his eighth NFL season.

"They just told me they make sure that they are being smart with me, making sure that I'm ready for the season so I'm taking that approach," Miller said.

The younger backs have run ball hard and avoided letting the first defender tackle them, something that has stood out to Miller over the first two preseason games. The veteran added that they have taken advantage of their opportunities in camp and in games.

Max Scharping has a few interesting nicknames, including “Cyborg” and “Robot."

The Texans will practice again on Tuesday. They will travel to Dallas to face the Cowboys on Saturday with kickoff set for 6 p.m. CT on ABC-13 and SportsRadio 610.

Check out the best preseason Week 2 images from Texans team photographer Zach Tarrant. Presented by Houston Methodist.