Kubiak on Smith: 'We accept it'
Antonio Smith appealed his suspension but the suspension was upheld.
The Texans’ veteran defensive end will miss the rest of the preseason, but more importantly, the first game of the regular season on Monday Night Football on Sept. 9 in San Diego.
“Disappointed,” head coach Gary Kubiak said on Friday after practice. “I thought we had an excellent chance of getting him back the first week.”
“We stand behind Antonio 100 percent,” cornerback Johnathan Joseph said. “He’s the guy that makes the defense go from a leader standpoint. Everybody rides behind him. He’s the guy that gets up and talks in team meetings and things and gives speeches before games. So you’re going to miss that part but at the same time, we have a job to do come Week 1 and Antonio understands that. And he’ll learn from it, I’m sure.”
Smith was suspended for his actions during last Saturday’s win against the Dolphins, when he ripped off offensive lineman Richie Incognito’s helmet and swung it at him. Smith was fined $21,000 for kicking Incognito last year; it was reduced to $11,000.
In both instances, Smith was retaliating to Incognito.
“Of course, he’s a great player,” J.J. Watt said earlier this week when asked about the defense without Smith. “And of course you want him out there, you want him playing. He can do a lot of things on the field but my mentality is: you gotta play with the 11 you got.”
Without Smith on Sunday, Tim Jamison will start against the Saints. It’s likely Jamison or second-year player Jared Crick will be the starter for the opener in San Diego.