For the first time, Texans coach Dom Capers acknowledged this week that
All-Pro defensive end Gary Walker may not return from a shoulder injury until
after the team's bye week in early October.
Walker has been out since suffering a sprained left shoulder during an Aug. 15 preseason game against Dallas.
Doctors said at the time Walker could miss anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks. Walker reached the one-month mark last weekend.
"I'm hoping it's before that, but you don't rule out anything," Capers said. "At what point we get him back, I'm not quite sure yet. But I think we're getting closer."
The Texans play host to Kansas City on Sunday and Jacksonville on Sept. 28 before entering the bye week. If the Texans elect to give Walker the maximum recovery time, that would put his target date to return to the lineup Oct. 12 at Tennessee.
"Hopefully we'll get Gary back here at some point," Capers said. "When he's healthy and ready to go we'll get him back in there."
Forgive the Texans if there are trying to hurry Walker back. The defensive line has been decimated by injuries with nose tackle Seth Payne out for the season after tearing the ACL in his left knee during Sunday's loss to the New Orleans Saints.
The Texans' current defensive line includes right end Jerry DeLoach (22 career starts), left end Corey Sears (five career starts) and rookie Terrance Martin, who will make his first career start Sunday.
-- QB David Carr had his right elbow wrapped earlier this week after being
sacked five times against the Saints, but said it was nothing serious. "I landed
on my elbow five times," Carr said. "It's just bruised."
-- CB Marcus Coleman, who had two interceptions in the season opening victory at Miami, had X-rays on his right hand Monday. Results were not immediately available.
-- K Kris Brown will be held out of Wednesday's workout with a groin injury.
-- LG Milford Brown suffered a sprained posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and is questionable for this week's game against Kansas City.
-- Even though Stacey Mack is considered the featured running back for the Texans he has been overshadowed both games by rookie Domanick Davis. Davis is currently being used as a third-down back and in short-yardage situations.