HOUSTON (CBS HOUSTON) – The message was clear after their season-opening loss to the Kansas City Chiefs: the Texans can’t start slow and succeed.

“You know I think we dug ourselves a hole early and you can’t do that in this league,” said J.J. Watt. “Teams are too good.”

He wasn’t the only veteran feeling the same way. Brian Cushing

“It was a slow start,” he said. “We were down, I don’t know what it was, but a good amount. It’s always tough to overcome especially against a good team like [the Chiefs.]”

“We just can’t put [ourselves] behind the eight ball early,” said veteran defensive back Jonathan Joseph.

Slow starts can’t be the norm said, Akeem Dent.

“I think that’ll be the main theme from here on out. Just try and get out and start fast from the first quarter.”

It wasn’t all bad for the Texans. The defense eventually came around and slowed the Chiefs down in the second half.

Dent was happy they could adjust to the Chiefs exploitation of their aggressive style.

“I think they kind of took advantage of it early on, but you know we were able to adjust and keep playing and keep grinding, and eventually slowed it down a little bit but it wasn’t enough.”

Cushing said he liked that the defense turned it around in the second-half slowing the Kanas City momentum and limiting the yards and points allowed.

It was a focus to change the first-half performance at halftime according to Joseph.

“We just kind of talked and we wanted to bow up as a team. Come out and take care of business and don’t continue to give in in some situations.”

Joseph knows they can do that by adjusting some of their fundamentals. He said the team had to tackle better and keep contain and edge to slow down plays. He specifically mentioned improving on third downs and not allowing teams to escaped third and long situations.

Slow start or not, the Texans play in seven days and Cushing expects to see a more ready defense.

“We got a game next week and we can turn it around real quick and I think we will.”

Follow Stoots on Twitter – @Cody_Stoots

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