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January 11, 2013

Texans rave about Arian Foster's skills

(Continued)

The Texans will need another big game from him on Sunday when they face New England in a divisional playoff game.

If he reaches 100 yards against the Patriots, he’ll become just the fourth player in league history to reach the mark in four straight postseason games.

Not bad for a player who went undrafted out of Tennessee in 2009 and was picked up as a free agent by the Texans. Foster was on the practice squad for part of that year, and his first career start came in the last game of that season against the Patriots.

He did well, running 20 times for 119 yards and two touchdowns. Things didn’t go nearly as well in his next shot against New England. He had just 46 yards rushing as Houston had to abandon the run game after getting down early in last month’s 42-14 loss.

Foster signed a five-year, $43.5 million contract before this season, and says that he rarely thinks about the inauspicious start to his NFL career anymore.

“Anytime you can achieve an elite level performance in any sport ... I think it’s special,” Foster said. “Me being undrafted I don’t think had anything to do with it. It didn’t change my opinion of myself.”

The draft snub once motivated him, but it doesn’t anymore.

“At one point it was. That training camp and that season it was,” he said. “But after that nobody cares that you went undrafted anymore.”

Coach Gary Kubiak saw many good qualities in Foster before the Texans picked him up, but he’s been really impressed with the ways in which he’s grown since.

“The thing that helps players really take their game to the next level is when they don’t have to work so darn hard on game plans because they know things,” Kubiak said. “You can walk in with 40 new runs and 100 new passes and it will take Arian about an hour to sit there and read and study and he can go right out there and it’s no problem. His talents take over all the time because he is such a smart player.”

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