Zach Strief announces retirement

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Offensive lineman Zach Strief arrived in New Orleans in 2006, as a seventh-round pick. Twelve seasons later, Strief is retiring.

He announced his decision during a Monday press conference.

After starting all 16 games in 2016, Strief’s final season was limited to two games, due to a knee injury.

Other than Drew Brees, Strief is the only player who has been with the team since Sean Payton became the head coach. Strief’s retirement comes at a time when Brees, in theory, could be negotiating a contract with a new team.

And it was when discussing Brees that Strief became the most emotional during the press conference, discussing the quarterback’s work ethic and leadership.