(WVUE) - For the second time in three seasons, the Saints have drafted a potential replacement for Zach Strief, and while Andrus Peat appears to have found his home at left guard, Ryan Ramczyk projects to be the team's right tackle...eventually.
Strief came into the league in 2006 as a seventh round pick and is now the second-longest tenured player on the roster, behind only Drew Brees. At this point, he's developed a laid back perspective about the inevitable end to his career "I've been saying for a couple of years that it's year to year at this point. It's so easy to say 'last year' or 'I'm going to play five more years.' The reality is, one, it's probably not all my decision, all of my choice. And two, there's a lot of factors that go into that. I think as long as you're healthy and you feel good and you're performing, I'll continue to come back. What I don't want to do, and what I'm going to be very cautious in doing, is I don't want the end of my career to be a disaster."
The Northwestern University product didn't take over a regular starting job until 2011 when Jon Stinchcomb retired but realizes that the learning curve for Ramczyk could be much sooner in his career "Hopefully the transition makes sense. Hopefully you get a point where you say, this guy is ready, I'm tired, I finished the year, let's let the next guy take over. And obviously, listen, we drafted a guy in the first round, again, there's a transition possibility there and something that, for me, it's important that I get him ready while going through the process of getting myself ready."
As for Strief's life after football, he is already taking strides in his next career. Sean Fazende will document that journey on FOX 8 Friday at 9 PM and again on Sunday's Final Play at 10:30 p.m.