NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - A New Orleans Saints Offensive tackle may be retiring after an injury-ridden season, according to a report from NFL Network.
Ian Rapoport tweeted that offensive tackle Zach Strief, 34, is expected to retire.
Strief, a seventh-round pick in 2006, played 12 seasons for the Saints, but he appeared in just two games in 2017 before going on injured reserve in early October with a knee injury, according to our partners NOLA.com | The Times Picayune.
Strief's retirement would leave the Saints with just three players left from the 2009 Super Bowl team, quarterbacks Drew Brees and Chase Daniel and punter Thomas Morstead. Brees and Daniel are both free agents, according to the report.
"I think physically it's something that I could do," Strief said in January. "The reality of this job is that there's as much mental preparation as physical, and I think the question will come down to more, 'Am I mentally ready to do what's necessary to play another season?'"
Strief had surgery in November on his anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments, making his recovery hard for a comeback during the regular season, according to the NFL report.
NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune reports that Ryan Ramczyk will be the Saints' top right tackle.
The 2017 first-round pick opened last season at left tackle with Terron Armstead injured, but the Saints hope Ramczyk and Armstead will be the bookends for years to come, according to the report.