TAMPA — Bucs RB LeGarrette Blount, having had time to reflect on his costly personal foul penalty during Sunday's loss at New Orleans, concedes it wasn't a smart play.
"It's kind of a heat-of-the-moment battle," Blount said. "It's always been a chippy battle between us and them. A lot of things were said. Different plays were made, and things happened before and after the play. It's just one of those things where you have to control your emotions.
"That's one of the things that always beats us. When we lose a game by three or four points, we can always look back at it and say there was that one foolish penalty that stalled our drive and we could have put seven (points) on the board. That is one thing that we have to cancel out and be aware of and not commit those penalties anymore."
The Bucs are among the most penalized clubs in the NFL, and Blount's penalty is representative of many of their violations.
The Bucs had reached the Saints 21-yard line before Blount's post-play, 15-yard infraction for making contact with DE Will Smith's face mask. It put the Bucs in a third-and-24 situation that they could not overcome. They settled for a 48-yard field goal that trimmed the lead to 17-6.
SECOND CHANCE FOR HAYES: Weakside LB Geno Hayes doesn't have his starting job back just yet, but his improvement in Wednesday's practice was enough to earn some snaps on defense Sunday against the Texans, coach Raheem Morris said.
Hayes was benched against the Saints because of inconsistent play, Morris said. Adam Hayward started on the strong side, and Quincy Black moved from the strong side to the weak side in place of Hayes.
"I hope it's a wake-up call for Geno," Morris said.
INJURY NEWS: The team practiced without WR Mike Williams (thigh), S Tanard Jackson (hamstring) and DT Frank Okam (calf) on Wednesday.
Williams suffered his injury early in Sunday's game but believes he'll be available against Houston. Jackson has been slowed by the hamstring injury for two weeks and is working through it.
For the Texans, WR Andre Johnson (hamstring), who has missed five games, did not practice. He is getting closer to returning and might play Sunday.
Staff writer Joe Smith contributed to this report.