Injury Update: Bad news first. Starting left tackle Jammal Brown did not practice due to the calf injury he sustained against St. Louis last Friday. The calf injury may not keep him out of this Sunday's game. Rookie cornerback Usama Young, who was becoming a valuable special teamer and dime back before his hamstring injury, practiced only limitedly. Young missed Sunday's game.
DT Brian Young remains out of practice because of a series of minor knee surgeries.
Good news is that starting LDE Charles Grant (ankle), WLB Scott Shanle (hamstring) and RB Reggie Bush (ankle, concussion) all practiced at full speed on Wednesday, the first day NFL teams must report practice participation.
The Texans also received some good news. Starting runningback Ahman Green has been limited in practice - never practicing Wednesdays - and has been on again, off again on Sundays. Coach Gary Kubiak expects Green to practice later in the week and possibly play. The Texans, like the Rams coming off their bye week to face the Saints, also expect back the heart of their offense - WR Andre Johnson. Johnson is very strong, big and fast, and provides a difficult matchup for any defensive back.
The Texans' triplets entering the season: QB Matt Schaub, RB Ahman Green, and WR Andre Johnson, might finally be healthy together on the field for the first time since September 16. Green and Johnson have battled knee injuries while Schaub picked up wicked blows to the helmet in back-to-back weeks at the end of October.
Bad news for the Texans is that they lost CB Dunta Robinson for the season to a damaged knee before their bye week. Not good news for Houston, as the Saints now have the fourth-best passing offensive in the NFL.
Stat Line: The Saints are putting the ball in the air a league-leading 41.2 times per game and are fourth in passing yards. Brees is sixth in interceptions, however, the Saints have allowed only seven sacks, once again best in the NFL... The Saints are also 8th worst in points scored (223), tied for fifth worst in third downs converted (56), and tied for second worst in third down conversion percentage (47%). Reggie Bush leads all runningbacks in receptions... The Saints last opponent St. Louis and their next are tied for the NFL lead in turnovers with 24, while the Saints are tied with two other teams for having forced the fewest amount of turnovers... In two games against the Saints, one start including his first start, Matt Schaub, has completed 18 of 43 passes for 236 yards, two interceptions, a fumble and three sacks. Schaub has never been sacked more than three times since...
Notes: The Lions claimed TE John Owens off waivers, after the Saints waived him to make room for DT McKinley Boykin. Owens had been with the Saints since 2005 but was originally drafted by Detroit out of Notre Dame in 2005... The NFL has reinstated former Saints draft class Ricky Williams from his suspension, and he's free to join the Dolphins next week... The last time the Saints' #2 pick matched up against the #1 pick in the same draft, was 1972, when top pick Jim Plunkett and the Patriots beat 1971 second overall pick Archie Manning and the Saints...