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Texans running back Arian Foster has dealt with hamstring problems before, so he kind of understands the difference in the severity.
Foster tweaked his strained hamstring during Saturday’s win at San Francisco but he said it doesn’t seem as bad as the original injury that hindered him early in training camp and forced him to miss the first preseason game. The NFL’s reigning rushing champ will sit out the Texans final preseason game Thursday at Minnesota but hopes to be on the field for the Sept. 11 season opener against the Indianapolis Colts.
“You know, it’s never a good thing to have experience with hamstring problems, but unfortunately, with my track record, I do,” Foster said Monday as the Texans got back to work in preparation for the Thursday night game against the Vikings.”So it was just a mild strain. So I’m already jogging, like I said, so it feels good.”
Foster re-aggravated the hamstring injury late in the first quarter. He couldn’t hide his frustration on the sideline after tweaking the hamstring. Foster had worked so hard to get back after missing 10 days when he originally injured his hamstring on the first day of camp.
Foster explained his emotional outburst in San Francisco on Monday.
“The reason I was so upset after I strained it the second time is because I work hard at what I do and I put a lot into it and I got a lot invested into it, and it’s frustrating when you do all the quote en quote ‘right things’ but you still come up with the short end of the stick as far as injuries are concerned,” he said. “And I know that’s part of the game, so you have to deal with it but it’s frustrating. That’s where that frustration came from.”
Foster has already started the rehabilitation process in hopes of being ready for the season opener. In addition to the physical part, he said he has also taking a closer look at his diet. He believes a lack of carbohydrates in his diet may have adversely affected his hamstring.
“I think a lot of it was my nutrition,” Foster said. “I was cutting out a lot of carbs in my diet, trying to get lean. I’m am lean but I was trying to get leaner. Carbs are the first things that go in your muscles when you’re burning energy. We’ve got a little plan together, so hopefully it works.”
Texans coach Gary Kubiak seems cautiously optimistic Foster will be on the field come Sept. 11. The Texans will use Thursday night’s game to play the backups while the starters rest so Foster wouldn’t have played even if healthy.
“Like I said, I’m concerned until he gets back out here, but all indications are that we’re heading in the right direction,” said Kubiak, who team off to a franchise-best 3-0 preseason record. “He didn’t do anything any different than he did last time, so I’m encouraged. Hopefully everything will be okay.”
In the meantime, Foster seems confident he will be ready for the opener.
“That’s the plan,” he said. “So we’re just going to stick to the plan and try to execute it.”
In other injury news, inside linebacker DeMeco Ryans and nose guard Earl Mitchell both returned to practice Monday after missing Saturday night’s game. Ryans won’t play Thursday night, like all starters, but said the elbow injury that kept him out of the Texans last two preseason games is fine.
Much has been made of Ryans not getting enough game time in camp to be ready to in the Texans new 3-4 defense, but the All-Pro linebacker doesn’t seem to be worried.
“It’s not a factor,” said Ryans, who has played just one quarter of preseason ball this month. “I feel like as long as I know what to do when we line up and all 11 guys are on the same page on defense, we’ll be fine.”