HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – Texans right guard Brandon Brooks was a late scratch from Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills after going to the hospital with severe stomach pains. At his press conference today, head coach Bill O’Brien wasn’t sure if he’d be healthy in time for Sunday night’s game against the Patriots.
“He was pretty sick,” said O’Brien. “I’m hoping that it’s going to be okay, but I think it’s too soon to tell right now.”
O’Brien said that Brooks stayed overnight in Buffalo at Erie County Medical Center, and that Brooks will be back in Houston at some point Monday night. This is the second time Brooks has missed a game due to stomach issues. He missed the Texans 33 – 28 loss to the Colts last October with similar symptoms and had treatment past offseason for stomach ulcers.
Like his players, O’Brien said he’s moved on from Sunday’s 30 – 21 loss to the Bills.
“It wasn’t our best football game obviously,” said O’Brien. “Too many penalties. Too many big plays. Didn’t coach good enough. And so we have to turn the page.”
Before his stint as head coach of Penn State, O’Brien served as an assistant coach with Sunday’s opponent: the New England Patriots. He started as an offensive assistant (2007), worked his way up to serve as the wide receivers coach (2008), quarterbacks coach (2009-10) and ultimately became the team’s offensive coordinator in 2011.
“I’ve got a lot of life long friends in that organization,” said O’Brien. “But in the end what it’s about, is really about the two teams. It’s not about [former Patriots defensive coordinator] Romeo [Crennel] or [former Patriots linebacker] Mike Vrabel, or myself, or [former Patriots tight ends coach] George Godsey, or Vince Wilfork. It’s about the two teams playing each other. The 2015 Texans versus the 2015 Patriots.”
Those 2015 Patriots have lost two games in a row after starting off the season 10-0. That doesn’t change O’Brien’s expectations for Sunday night.
“I expect probably one of the best teams in football coming in here,” said O’Brien. “Playing a good game and posing a number of challenges for our team.”
O’Brien had a lot of praise for Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.
“He’s a very bright guy,” said O’Brien. “And he’s been in the National Football League for 40+ years. When he graduated from college he went right to the NFL. And he’s seen it all. He’s seen the changes in the league over 40 years in strategy, in salary cap, in free agency and trades, and all the different things. So he really understands the league. And he understands personnel really well. He understands his own team and how he put [it] together. It’s different every year at a lot of positions. And he tries with his staff . . . to put together the gameplan that is best suited to beat the team they’re playing.”
O’Brien and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady obviously worked with one another during O’Brien’s 5 year stint with New England. You may remember the most internet famous moment: O’Brien’s sideline dustup with Tom Brady during the 2011 season (and Brian Hoyer trying to break them up):
You’d think that working relationship would help O’Brien have a better idea on what makes Tom Brady tick. But O’Brien said that isn’t the case.
“You guys are probably going to laugh at this,” said O’Brien. “But I don’t see it as much of a benefit at all. Because I haven’t been there in three years, and they’re a lot different than when I was there.”
Paul Gallant co-hosts the “B-Straw and Pauly G” show – Tuesdays 9-11 PM, Wednesdays 8-11 PM, and Fridays 8-11 PM – on SportsRadio 610. He also hosts SportsZone Unfiltered – Fridays at 10 PM – on The Kube: Channel 57. Get in touch with Paul via email or at his facebook page: Paul Gallant: SportsRadio610.