Texans clean out lockers on first day of offseason
The scene in the Texans’ locker room after their 41-28 AFC divisional round loss to New England on Sunday was obviously one of extreme disappointment.
But the scene back at Reliant Stadium helped ease that feeling, even if just for a few minutes. About 200 fans were waiting to greet the Texans when they arrived back in town around 2:30 a.m.
While players rolled down their windows to high-five fans, left tackle Duane Brown actually stayed and signed autographs.
“It was awesome because I know how long that flight was for us, so I can only imagine staying out there,” Brown said. “It was pretty cold. That’s why I felt obligated to go greet them. They didn’t have to do that. I know there’s a lot of people who are disappointed. But those fans just show how much they love us, how much they support us. The support makes it through defeat. So it felt good to go out there and meet them and greet them.”
But of course all players greatly appreciate the amazing support of the fans at home and on the road.
“Our fans have been with us throughout the whole year,” Brown added. “We really appreciate the support. We would have liked for it to keep going past this week. Unfortunately we fell short, but I just want to say thank you to you all. It definitely made playing at home an awesome experience every week, and it was great to see fans as well on the road travelling.”
“The fans are unbelievable and I appreciate them so much,” defensive end J.J. Watt said. “They made this year so much fun, and like I said before, I can’t ask for much more at the age of 23. I have a great team, I have great fans and I have a great family, and I appreciate every single group.”
“We totally appreciate their support,” tight end Garrett Graham said. “I’m sorry the season had to end the way it did, but we’ll be back next year and we’ll be working even harder.”
More players showed their appreciation of fans via Twitter soon after Sunday’s game as well.
The next morning at Monday’s locker cleanout at Reliant Stadium, the consensus among the team was to work harder than ever in the offseason in order to bring a championship to the city and fans.
“We will definitely make an effort to improve individually and as a group this offseason to bring one home to Houston,” Brown said.
“We appreciate it, but I feel like I let those people down,” Watt said. “I feel like they deserve better. We gave it everything we had. We left it all on the field, but we came up short. To me success in this league is a trophy, and we came back empty handed, so my entire goal is to bring that to this city and to show this city that we are a championship team and we’re going to bring them a championship.”