Joe Mays: ‘Hopefully The Fans Can Accept Me’
HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – Tuesday, I wrote an article about the Texans signing veteran inside linebacker Joe Mays. Before Mays could attend his first Texans’ training camp, the team had to make room on their roster and this morning, the former Bronco made his debut. Head coach Gary Kubiak said, “I watched him a little bit. First off, his conditioning is good to come out here in this heat. He held up the whole practice.” Kubiak added, “He’ll be a good addition to our team.”
Mays, 28, was released by his former team, the Denver Broncos because they didn’t want to pay his $4 million base salary. Mays shared with the media today that he explored many other teams, “I had quite a few. I had Washington, Kansas City, San Diego and Oakland. Yeah, the whole division. That’s just a couple, but I had quite a few more.” Ultimately he chose the Texans because of their defensive scheme, “I like it. I always wanted to get back into a 3-4. I like the way they run their system.” Mays added that it was Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips that sealed the deal, “I love Coach Phillips, man. He lets the players play and the defense is player friendly, so he lets us go out there, attack, and make plays. That’s definitely one of the reasons why I came here.”
The former Bronco wanted to clear the air with Texans’ fans about his hard-hitting shot he took on Matt Schaub in Denver last season, “I read blogs and all that stuff. My wife does, too. She went on the internet and see all that stuff about they wanted to kill me and all types of stuff. I was just laughing, but I think I was more worried about the fans and how they would respond to me coming here.” Mays continued, “I think they (fans) were just mad that they thought I took a cheap shot on (QB Matt) Schaub. That’s rightfully so that they feel the way that they felt. Hopefully they feel a little bit different about me now.
Earlier this week Schaub commented on the brutal hit, “We’re way past that. That was gone as soon as we walked off the football field that day, it’s just a physical, hard-nosed game and he’s a physical player and that’s just part of football. I don’t fault him for that; he’s a good player and a good guy so it’s definitely water under the bridge.” The hit left Schaub without a piece of his ear attached and left Mays suspended for one game, “That was rough, man. It was rough.” Mays said, “I just try to come out and play the game the way it’s supposed to be played. I’m not a dirty player. I know a lot of people said that and think that. I just come out play physical and play fast. That’s how I was taught growing up and that’s what I try to implement in my game each and every day.” Mays continued, “We talked, man. It’s over with. I’m just glad to hear that everything is okay. Hopefully the fans can accept me. I know how mad they was about it and believe me I was upset too.” Mays solution to win over Texans’ fans, “I just got to go out there and play my butt off and do whatever I can for the team.”
The fans should feel better having a veteran leader with intensity like Mays, in a Texans uniform, “I’m glad and I’m happy that they view me as a guy that can come in and help. Now, it’s my end. I got to hold up my end of the bargain: come out, perform, and do whatever I can.”
Mays was asked what will be the first thing he’s have to get used to here in Houston, Mays said, “I think adjust to the heat. This is different. The humidity, yeah, it’s hot out here. I have to adjust to that.”
Follow Julie On Twitter: @Julie_Takahashi