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The Texans rank first in the league in passing defense (162.5 yards per game) and 17th in rushing defense (108.5 yards). … The move to a 3-4 has led to a subtle change in positioning for Mario Williams, whom the Texans drafted No. 1 overall in 2006. Williams, formerly a defensive end, is now an outside linebacker who focuses on rushing the passer.

Head coach Sean Payton commented on Ivory’s status saying that he was in “great shape” and will be “more than ready” to play once he comes off the PUP list after week six. But Ivory’s return brings up an interesting problem for the Saints — who do they release and how will he fit into an already crowded backfield?

Ben Tate, the Texans’ super sub in their two victories over Indianapolis and Miami, could be their third starting running back in three games when they play Sunday at New Orleans. Tate has come off the bench to rush for 116 yards against the Colts and 103 yards against the Dolphins. His unselfish attitude combined with his toughness and productivity could lead to the first start of his career.

A swing pass to Darren Sproles that produced a 12-yard touchdown with 12:05 left in the Saints’ 30-13 win caused uproar among viewers after the New Orleans back appeared to step out of bounds at the 2-yard line. “There was a miscommunication between the replay booth — which should have called for a review — and the field,” an NFL spokesman told ESPN Chicago on Tuesday, adding that the touchdown “should have been reviewed.”

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