2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Texans tied for NFL's best mark

    2012-11-12 19:02

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By KRISTIE RIEKEN
AP Sports Writer

HOUSTON (AP) - It wasn't pretty, but the Houston Texans found a way to beat the Bears and escape Chicago tied for the best record in the NFL.

Now the Texans (8-1) are preparing for one of the NFL's worst teams in Jacksonville, focused on improving as they inch closer to their goal of reaching the Super Bowl.

Houston coach Gary Kubiak believes Sunday's win will help his team in the future.

``The more ways you find to win in this league, you get more confidence,'' he said. ``Things like that give you a chance to be a great team. There will be nothing false about what we are when we get there at the end because we've been in some tough situations. And the more we handle them, the better we get.''

He said winning a tough game on the road was particularly important with games at New England and Indianapolis coming up in the second half of the season.

Kubiak sees the Texans maturing, and knows that will be key if they hope to become a championship team. He talks to his team often about getting to that goal.

``Can you be a good enough football team or a good enough organization to win a championship,'' he said he asks his team. ``I think there are different levels and we're trying to work our way toward that mindset.''

The Texans got the 13-6 victory on Sunday by forcing four turnovers and grinding out the win with their running game led by Arian Foster's 102 yards rushing and the game's only touchdown on a 2-yard reception.

Foster is third in the NFL with 872 yards rushing. Kubiak has been pleased with him all season, but thought his work on Sunday night was particularly impressive.

``I would say that was about the toughest 102 yards a man could get,'' Kubiak said. ``If you look at some of the great games he's had, I don't think there's anything bigger than last night because we were running against eight-, nine- man fronts all night. Everybody and their brother knew who was getting the ball and he still found a way to keep us on track.''

Houston's line led by end J.J. Watt, usually leads the way defensively. But against the Bears, it was the secondary that came up big. Safety Danieal Manning, a former Bear, led the way with an interception and a forced fumble.

But that wasn't the only way he contributed to the win.

``He did a really good job with our team the night before the game, just talking about what it was going to take to win in that place,'' Kubiak said. ``He's a leader on this team and a fine player. I thought he did an exceptional job with the rest of his teammates this week letting them know what it was going to be like, how we were going to have to play to win that game.''

Cornerback Kareem Jackson also had an interception for the Texans. Jackson has shaken off a slow start to his career to emerge as a solid member of Houston's defense in his third season.

``We all know what Kareem's been through,'' Kubiak said. ``Good pros, they go through tough times early in their career, but then when they come out of it, they're consistent and good for a long, long time. I think that's what you're seeing from Kareem.''

The Texans could get a boost this week with the return of a trio of injured players. Running back Ben Tate, who has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury, has been running with trainers and could play on Sunday.

Nose tackle Shaun Cody (ribs) and tight end Owen Daniels (back), who sat out Sunday, are also better and should return to practice this week. Cody will go through what Kubiak called a trial run on Wednesday.

``If he's able to work through that situation I think you could see him on the field probably Thursday or Friday,'' Kubiak said of Cody. ``We're heading toward him being back active and being a part of it.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Jimmy StatenNov 26 09:43p

The Seattle Seahawks signed free-agent DT Jimmy Staten (Seahawks) to their practice squad Wednesday, Nov. 26. The team also released OT Andrew McDonald from their practice squad.

Marcus ThigpenNov 26 09:03p

The Buffalo Bills claimed WR Marcus Thigpen off waivers from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Wednesday, Nov. 26. The team also waived DE Bryan Johnson.

Richard GordonNov 26 09:03p

The Tennessee Titans waived TE Richard Gordon Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Larry FitzgeraldNov 26 08:33p

Arizona Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Dwayne AllenNov 26 07:33p

Indianapolis Colts TE Dwayne Allen (ankle) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

C. PattersonNov 26 06:23p

Minnesota Vikings WR Cordarrelle Patterson (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Jerick McKinnonNov 26 06:13p

Minnesota Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon (back) did not practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Brandon LaFellNov 26 06:03p

New England Patriots WR Brandon LaFell (shoulder) was limited during practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Jace AmaroNov 26 05:13p

New York Jets TE Jace Amaro (head) is not expected to play in Week 13, because he is going through the concussion protocol.

Reggie BushNov 26 04:53p

Detroit Lions RB Reggie Bush (ankle, back) was limited in practice for the third straight day Wednesday, Nov. 26, and is questionable for Week 13 against the Chicago Bears.

Jordan CameronNov 26 04:43p

Cleveland Browns TE Jordan Cameron (concussion) remains day-to-day, but the team is looking for him to practice symptom-free this week, according to head coach Mike Pettine.

Jordan ReedNov 26 04:13p

Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed (hamstring) was limited in practice Wednesday, Nov. 26, according to head coach Jay Gruden.

R. Griffin IIINov 26 02:53p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III needs more seasoning, and he'll likely do it from the bench for the rest of this season, according to head coach Jay Gruden. [ More ]

Arian FosterNov 26 02:33p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (groin) has an excellent chance to return in Week 13 against the Tennessee Titans after missing the last two games.

Mark SanchezNov 26 02:23p

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Larry FitzgeraldNov 26 01:53p

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Julius ThomasNov 26 01:23p

Denver Broncos TE Julius Thomas (ankle) was limited at practice Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Phil LoadholtNov 26 12:33p

Minnesota Vikings OT Phil Loadholt (pectoral) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Geno SmithNov 26 12:23p

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R. Griffin IIINov 26 09:43a

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III has officially been benched in favor of QB Colt McCoy in Week 13. Head coach Jay Gruden informed the team Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Colt McCoyNov 26 09:43a

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III has officially been benched in favor of QB Colt McCoy in Week 13. Head coach Jay Gruden informed the team Wednesday, Nov. 26.

R. Griffin IIINov 25 11:43p

The Washington Redskins are planning on benching QB Robert Griffin III for the Week 13 game against the Indianapolis Colts in favor of QB Colt McCoy. However, Griffin still [ More ]

Jace AmaroNov 25 05:13p

New York Jets TE Jace Amaro (concussion) is in concussion protocol, according to head coach Rex Ryan, after suffering the concussion in Week 12 against the Buffalo Bills.

R. Griffin IIINov 25 04:23p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III was named the starter for Week 13 against the Indianapolis Colts Monday, Nov. 24, by head coach Jay Gruden, but he left open [ More ]

Michael BushNov 25 04:13p

The Arizona Cardinals signed free-agent RB Michael Bush (Bears) and cut RB Kerwynn Williams Tuesday, Nov. 25.

Brandon McManusNov 25 03:43p

The Denver Broncos waived PK Brandon McManus Tuesday, Nov. 25.

Connor BarthNov 25 03:43p

The Denver Broncos signed free-agent PK Connor Barth (Buccaneers) to an undisclosed deal Tuesday, Nov. 25, after waiving PK Brandon McManus, according to a source.

Reggie BushNov 25 03:13p

Detroit Lions RB Reggie Bush (ankle) said he'll be ready to play Thursday, Nov. 27, after missing Week 12 with an ankle injury.

Latavius MurrayNov 25 02:43p

Oakland Raiders RB Latavius Murray (concussion) will undergo baseline testing for his concussion Tuesday, Nov. 25, according to a league source. He is feeling good, but he must go [ More ]

Brian HoyerNov 25 01:53p

Cleveland Browns QB Brian Hoyer was never in danger of being benched in favor of QB Johnny Manziel in the team's Week 12 win over the Atlanta Falcons, according [ More ]

Blake BortlesNov 25 01:33p

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles went 15-for-27 for just 146 yards and an interception in the team's Week 12 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, and he hasn't tossed a [ More ]

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