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Arian Foster ruled out for Houston Texans' Week 10 tilt

Houston Texans running back Arian Foster missed his third consecutive practice Friday and has been ruled out for Sunday's tussle with the Arizona Cardinals.

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Foster had been dealing with a hamstring injury, but he's now suffering from a back injury.

Interim coach Wade Phillips said Friday that Foster has seen several specialists-- both locally in Houston and out of state -- about his back but didn't give a timetable for his recovery.

While he hasn't missed a game in 2013, Foster had just four carries in Week 7 -- before the Texans' bye week -- and left early in the first quarter of last week's loss to the Indianapolis Colts, without one carry.

NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Friday that Foster is seeking several opinions on his back problems, according to a source informed of the running back's injuries. Foster is battling a lumbar spine issue and surgery is a possibility. If surgery were to happen, it would end Foster's season. But he hopes he can continue playing this season.

Foster dealt with a back injury in training camp this year. Rapoport asked a source if his latest back problem is similar. The source replied it's "worse."

John McClain of the Houston Chronicle first reported that surgery is an option for Foster.

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Ben Tate carried the load last week, and he will start and likely see the majority of the carries again this week. Tate continues to play despite having four cracked ribs. If Foster is out for an extended period, Tate will play an even larger role in shouldering the load.

Rookie running back Dennis Johnson showed flashes against the Colts and should spell Tate. Phillips told reporters the team is leaning toward Deji Karim as the third running back.

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