Monday, October 1, 2012
Texans: David Stewart played 'dirty'
ESPN.com news services
The Houston Texans voiced their frustration with the play of Tennessee Titans offensive tackle David Stewart following Sunday's contest between the AFC South rivals.
Multiple members of the Texans' defense told the Houston Chronicle that Stewart used "dirty" tactics, claiming that he attempted to pull Brooks Reed's hair and threw punches throughout the contest.
"I saw some things I've never seen before," Texans defensive end Antonio Smith told the Chronicle. "I saw him try to pull (Reed's) hair out, tried to ride somebody's back, which I thought was kind of funny, actually."
Smith made similar complaints about Miami Dolphins guard Richie Incognito after Week 1. Houston linebacker Connor Barwin echoed Smith's sentiments, comparing Stewart to Incognito.
"He's like Incognito," Barwin told the Chronicle. "Everybody will say it -- (Stewart) is a dirty player. He threw a punch at me. He threw a punch at Brooks."
Texans safety Danieal Manning also chimed in, telling the Chronicle that Stewart also got physical with cornerback Johnathan Joseph.
"One play, I saw (Joseph) making a tackle, and (Stewart) was around the pile, and he was trying to help (Titans running back) Chris Johnson up," Manning told the paper. "(Joseph) was down. He was kneeing (Joseph), and I said, 'This guy's crazy.'"
Smith stated, however, that Stewart's play helped motivate the Texans during their 38-14 victory.
"When he started doing all that, that spark happened," Smith said. "Everybody started making plays, so it kind of worked against them."
Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who replaced injured starter Jake Locker in the first quarter, defended Stewart, who was flagged twice for personal fouls.
"It was chippy all day on both sides," Hasselbeck said. "I saw people punch (Stewart) in the face, and there was no handkerchief. I don't know what to say. I guess his reputation got him."
Tennessee right guard Leroy Harris also made a bold statement following the lopsided loss, telling the Chronicle that Texans star defensive end J.J. Watt is "not anything special."
Watt recorded a pair of sacks in the contest, increasing his league-leading total to 7½, and forced a fumble.
"(Watt) is not anything special," Harris told the paper. "He's just persistent at what he does. And if you use bad technique, he'll exploit. I locked him down most the game, except those two plays (sacks)."