Texans’ Foster out for season with Achilles injury
HOUSTON — Texans running back Arian Foster is out for the season with an Achilles tendon injury, a significant blow for a team that was just blown out for the second time this season.
Coach Bill O’Brien said Monday he expects Foster to miss the rest of the season but didn’t elaborate on the injury to Foster’s right leg.
Foster was injured without being hit late in the Texans 44-26 loss to Miami on Sunday. He was in motion when he fell to the ground at the beginning of a play.
Foster missed the first three games of the season after tearing his groin muscle in training camp.
"I know he’s hurting," O’Brien said. "He worked hard to come back for the season, had the groin injury and now this injury. He’s a guy that’s proven he can come back from injury and I’m sure once he’s able to rehab it he’ll rehab it very diligently and try to come back. We’re all supportive of him in that rehab."
Foster hasn’t played 16 games since 2012 after missing three games last season and sitting out eight in 2013 after back surgery. The 29-year-old, who ran for 1,246 yards last season, had 163 yards rushing with a touchdown and 227 yards receiving with two scores this season.
Left tackle Duane Brown, a close friend of Foster, talked about how much he feels for him.
"It’s devastating," Brown said. "Just because I know how much he puts into this thing, how much work he puts in to be great, to be healthy, and to stay on the field. I know how hard he worked to come back from his groin injury. To have this happen, I’m really hurting for him. I know it’s pretty frustrating."
The Texans are also dealing with a situation with backup quarterback Ryan Mallett after he missed the team charter flight to Miami on Saturday and took a commercial flight instead. Mallett said that he was late because of traffic.
O’Brien said he and general manager Rick Smith are handling the situation internally unspecified "options" were being discussed.
"So 48 hours after he missed the flight you still haven’t decided what to do yet?" a reporter asked the coach.
"Right," O’Brien said.
Brian Hoyer and Mallett are Houston’s only two quarterbacks on the active roster with Tom Savage on injured reserve. A fourth quarterback, Zac Dysert, is on the practice squad.
With Foster out the Texans (2-5) will look to Chris Polk, Jonathan Grimes and Alfred Blue to try and keep the running game afloat. Blue started the three games that Foster missed this year and leads the team with 234 yards rushing. Most of those yards came in a win over Tampa Bay in Week 3 when he ran for 139 yards and a touchdown.
Polk has 138 yards rushing and Grimes has added 54. O’Brien was asked how the three running backs have performed so far.
"I think it’s been decent," he said. "When you’re 2-5 I don’t think anybody’s performed great (but) I think that those guys have shown some flashes."
Grimes said it will take all of them to make up for Foster’s absence as they prepare to host Tennessee (1-5) on Sunday.
"It’s the same mode," he said. "Everybody’s just got to step up and get better."