Bradie James was in a familiar spot for last Sunday’s game against the Titans. On the sideline.
See, James, who hadn’t missed a game since his rookie season in 2003, was forced to sit out Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury.
Missing one game was more than enough.
“Health-wise, I’m back, feel good,” James said after practice on Thursday. “The training staff did a great job of getting me back. I’m looking forward to a big game this week. I mean, nothing’s gonna keep me out of this one.”
Missing the game on Sunday broke James’ streak of 153 straight regular season games played in. James hadn’t missed a game since the first two of his rookie season in Dallas. It wasn’t quite London Fletcher’s 236-game streak but it was the equivalent of nearly 10 seasons.
“I hadn’t missed too many games in my career, missing one was … I hadn’t missed one since my rookie season,” James said. “So that was … that was different. I’ve actually played through worse, so I’ll be alright.”
James was back on the practice field on Thursday, along with Johnathan Joseph and Derek Newton. Head coach Gary Kubiak said they will all likely by game-time decisions.
The Texans were able to get a win against the Titans without James on Sunday. Darryl Sharpton took over control of the headset and the defense but it means a lot to the Texans to get the leader of the defense back.
“If he comes back, it’s huge,” rookie linebacker Whitney Mercilus said. “The guy, he’s basically the quarterback of our defense. He’s a 10-year vet. He controls that defense. He knows where to put guys at.”
James has only faced the Patriots once in his career. His Cowboys lost to Tom Brady’s New England team 48-27 in 2007. In that game he had just one tackle and Brady completed 31-of-46 passes for 388 yards and five touchdowns.
“Haven’t won. Haven’t beat him,” James said. “It will be great. This is probably my best opportunity. He’s a closer, that’s the one thing about Tom Brady. You just always have to be on your P’s and Q’s, crossing your T’s and dotting your I’s.”
In his first year with the Texans, James started all 11 games before missing last week. He said he was a full participant in Thursday’s practice and said he’ll definitely play on Monday night.
“It went well. It went real good,” James said. “Nothing’s gonna keep me out of this one.”