HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – Bill O’Brien has been very guarded when it comes to discussing injuries to his players this season. At his press conference Monday, O’Brien kept with the trend.
“Hamstrings, hip flexors, quad strains, or whatever it might be,” said O’Brien when asked about punter Shane Lechler’s status this week. “Every one of them is day to day. Every single morning we’ll come in. We’ll see how they’re feeling. And we’ll list in on the injury report as basically what they tell us. And usually with all of these guys that are under that category of soft tissue injury it’ll be day to day.”
O’Brien was asked if he’d work out another punter with Lechler “day to day”.
“There are a few different options that you have there,” said O’Brien. “Maybe you bring some guys in to take a look at in a workout. Maybe you have someone on your team that’s done it in the past that can do it. But we’re not at that stage yet where we have to decide it. Because Shane being the pro that he is – he’s going to let us know how he feels and what he can do.”
As for Arian Foster, O’Brien said he found out about the before the game, then adjusted accordingly.
“He worked out…like an hour or two before the game,” said O’Brien. “And he felt like it wasn’t 100%…With those type of hamstring injuries you never know how one cut is going to make it feel…He felt like he couldn’t go, so that’s when we knew.”
But his absence didn’t affect the game-plan significantly:
“There are things that we would do with Arian in there that maybe we wouldn’t do,” said O’Brien. “But maybe we’ll do other things with other players that we wouldn’t do with Arian. So I wouldn’t say that it affected the game-plan too much.”
Without Arian Foster, the Texans struggled to run the ball in New York. They also struggled to stop the run. Defensive tackle Louis Nix III was taken in the third round of this year’s draft to help the front seven in that task. Unfortunately, Nix has frustrated O’Brien thus far, drawing comments like this from the head coach in late August:
“You have a guy there that’s a young guy who really doesn’t totally get it yet, what it means to play in this league. He has to come out and earn it.”
O’Brien was asked today if Nix is any closer to “getting it”.
“He’s still got a ways to go,” said O’Brien. “But he’s getting better. He works hard after practice. I believe that he wants to be good. But he’s got a ways to go.”
This Sunday, the Texans host the Bills, coached by Bill O’Brien’s old pal Doug Marrone. Their relationship goes way back.
“He’s one of my closest friends,” said O’Brien. “He’s a guy that helped me really break into this profession as a graduate assistant at Georgia Tech. He’s a fantastic football coach. We worked together on the same staff at Georgia Tech. We carpooled to work together. His wife and my wife were room-mates at Boston College.”
But their relationship won’t have any affect on Sunday’s game.
“At the end of the day, any coach would tell you that once the two teams play, when you’re on opposite sidelines it’s all about the two teams and wanting to win. It really is.”
Paul Gallant hosts the “B-Straw and Pauly G” show – Tuesdays 9-11 PM, Wednesdays 8-11 PM, and Fridays 8-11 PM – with Brien Straw. Get in contact with Paul on Twitter – @PaulyGSays – or on Facebook – Paul Gallant.
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