Head Coach Bill O’Brien
RB D’Onta Foreman
QB Tom Savage
HEAD COACH BILL O’BRIEN
Can you just go over who is going to play on Wednesday?
“Playing everybody. Everybody that’s able to play, will play. I don’t know, I’m not sure what the big deal is on that. If they go out there and if they play well, maybe we’ll take them out. Maybe if we go out there and we’re slopping around and we need some more rhythm in all three phases, we’ll keep them in. But, we’re going to play everybody. Everybody that’s healthy and ready to go will play.”
Have you determined how much time you want to play each quarterback?
“Yeah, I have. I have determined that.”
Can you please tell us?
“Tom (Savage) is going to start the game. Deshaun (Watson) will play and Brandon (Weeden) will play. I’m not trying to – you have no idea how the game’s going to play out. You know what I mean? How long is this drive? How long is that drive? You have to play it by ear relative to how the game goes. But, all three quarterbacks will play in the game.”
What are you looking for from QB Tom Savage? He’s been a starter a little bit, but not a lot. What do you want to see from Tom?
“Good operation of the offense. Take care of the football. Getting in and out of the huddle quickly. Just an overall – from all three of those guys, from all three of them – just a clean game, a clean operation. Everybody on the same page and see if we can score some points.”
Have you seen the offense make progress from when you started to where you are right now?
“Yeah, I think we’ve improved. I really do. I think we’ve improved, but it’s one thing to say that you’ve improved in practice and it’s a whole other thing to say that you’ve improved on the field. Look, I’m not trying to forecast what’s going to happen on Wednesday night, but you have a 90-man roster, there’s going to be a lot of guys in the game, you’re not going to be looking at the 2001 Rams or the 2007 Patriots on Wednesday night, I don’t think. Hopefully we play pretty well, but it’s the first preseason game. I just want them to come out and play well, play clean – no penalties, no turnovers. Try to play a clean game the first time out. That’s what I want.”
Early in practice you called everybody up to talk. Were you talking about a standard that you want to see every time you guys step on the field?
“It’s really with the younger guys. I really think our guys that have been around us for a while now, they really understand what that standard is. It’s really more about the younger guys – especially the skill players – knowing the formations, knowing the personnel. Just the routine things that they need to know on Wednesday night. You break the huddle, know where to go and then everything else takes care of itself.”
What’s your favorite thing about working with quarterbacks at this part of the year?
“I just love every part of working with the quarterbacks, especially when they’re like these guys. They’re just good guys. They’re easy to coach. They have good suggestions. They’re really smart. They understand our offense, so they have good questions. They keep you on your toes as well as us keeping them on their toes. It’s just a lot of fun. You look forward to it – get up early, get in here, get prepared for the meetings – and you look forward to seeing them every day because they’re putting a lot of time into it, too, and it’s fun to coach them.”
How’s their chemistry with each other? Are they pretty good at motivating each other, pushing each other?
“From what I see, I think it’s really good chemistry. There’s a lot of encouragement, a lot of give-and-take in the room, some definitely senses of humor in the room. All three of them. I wouldn’t’ say they’re the funniest guys in the world, but they have their moments. They definitely all three get along and they root for each other when they’re in there. It’s competitive, obviously, but they want the offense to do well. They want their buddy to go in there and do well.”
That’s kind of what you want when you have a rookie coming in, right? That kind of relationship?
“Absolutely. You have guys that know the offense – Tom’s (Savage) been here the longest, Brandon’s (Weeden) been here for a couple of years. Absolutely. You want those guys, when Deshaun (Watson) has a question, to – that the players can help him, not just the coach. That’s what these guys do. Tom (Savage) and Brandon (Weeden) have done a really good job with Deshaun (Watson) of kind of giving him their own insight into the offense, which is good to see.”
RB D’ONTA FOREMAN
What would be a good performance for you on Wednesday?
“Just going out there, having fun and making sure I’m good with all my assignments. Go out there and have fun and just go out there and try to win a game.”
How far have you come from the first day of training camp to now?
“I’ve learned so much about just how to be a pro and learned from those guys that are pros. I think that’s the biggest thing is just me learning the offense. Of course I’ve gotten a lot better with that, and like I said, just getting back into the flow of being in the I-formation. I played more in the spread my last year so I’m getting back used to that and I’m having fun with it.”
What would you like to find out about yourself right off the bat?
“I guess how good I am in the NFL, playing against NFL talent. Other than that, we just have to go out there and compete.”
Who will be watching back home?
“Everybody. I’m pretty sure everybody in Texas City, every fan of mine from UT (University of Texas). Everybody wants to see me play and see the Texans play, so, like I said, I want to go out there and give a good show.”
Will you be able to stop for a second and take it all in?
“Oh yeah. I always do. That’s one of my things. I’m going to go out there and I want to look around and just soak it in and go out there and compete as best I can.”
QB TOM SAVAGE
Do you feel that you, QB Deshaun Watson and QB Brandon Weeden push each other to be better?
“Yeah, absolutely. That’s one of our keys in our room, is competition and just pushing each other to get better. We’re all out there helping each other. Our main focus right now is winning.”
Is there anything you specifically want to accomplish for yourself Wednesday night?
“I think just consistency. Ultimately we’ve got to score points. That’s what I want to accomplish on Wednesday and then protect the ball.”
Are you excited to see another team and not the same guys?
“Yeah. I know our offense and defense are kind of getting on each other’s nerves right now, so it’ll be good to take it out on someone else.”
How important is this game for you?
“It’s important. Every time we strap those pads on and go out there it’s important. It’s going to be a good test for us to go out there and go against a live opponent and it’s going to feel good to get hit for the first time in a year. It’ll be good.”
Any specific things you’d like to work on?
“Protect the ball. Really, we want to score points. I know it’s a simple answer but that’s the goal.”
Does it feel any different going into this preseason as the starter? Do you approach it differently?
“No. The last four years I’ve been here that’s kind of the approach I’ve taken into every single game. That’s going to continue.”
Have you seen the offense grow through camp and compete against the defense in practice better?
“Yeah, absolutely. I think the defense is doing a heck of a job out there. We’re competing and we’re battling against each other and it’s good to see. I know communication on offense is good right now. We’re all communicating with each other – with all the groups, not just the ones. With the twos and threes, you see some growth there and it’s good to see.”
How are things going with you and C Nick Martin?
“Great. I think he’s one of my good buddies right now. He’s a good dude. He’s a good player.”
That’s it? That’s all you got for him?
“That’s it. I don’t want to blow smoke.”
How do you like working with the other two quarterbacks?
“It’s awesome. We’re always communicating with each other, the quarterbacks. That’s what we want to see. That’s the name of this game. We want to win games and by that, you’ve got to have good leadership in that room and we’ve got to be a tight-knit room.”
Is there anything you can say to rookies to prepare them for what this first game will be like?
“A lot of them ask me what it feels like out there and I’ve told them I’ve only played three games in the NFL, so I’m not really a good person to come up to and ask. Ultimately you’re going to have nerves and you’re going to have those jitters but at the end of the day, it’s a sport. You’ve got to go out there and you got to have fun. I mean, how many guys can say they go out there and play in the NFL? So, you have to have some fun with it.”
Was your first preseason game a blur?
“I don’t remember. I think I blacked out. No, it was good. I remember it. It was awesome. I remember I checked the ball down like five times in a row. Just nervous. But it was good.”