New Orleans Saints RB Zach Line* Post-Practice Media Availability
Tuesday, August 29, 2017*
How does it feel only getting six carries so far?
"Well in previous years I didn't get any. They went well. It was good work."
How's the family doing?
"We've been living in Houston for 10 years. It's just really devastating to see what Hurricane Harvey and the type of damage it's causing to the city of Houston and the surrounding areas. Some of the family is affected by it. My mom is on the north side and right across the street it's flooding and it is getting pretty high but no damage has come. I'd just urge everyone that can help, every little bit matters. Everyone that's out risking their life to rescue people. We're sending all of our prayers and wishing the best. I hope that things slow up and the rain slows up and this thing washes away, so we can start the recovery process."
What about your gym that you own there?
"Yes I talked to the manager the other day and things were pretty good there. We have been in talks with trying to help out in some type of way. I don't know if we can maybe open the gym up and bring people in. We are in the works right now to see if we'll be able to help. It might be post-hurricane but we are in the midst of seeing what we can do to help."
Is it hard to make those decisions because it's still going on?
"Yes, it is. A lot of people are trapped right now and there are a lot of rescues needed. It's very unfortunate. It's been tough for me, just being here and having family there. We're just concerned and praying. That's what we've been doing here, just praying."
How many close family members or extended family members do you have that live in the Houston area?
"It's about a dozen, maybe a little more. I have been getting different reports from different members. That is why I just urge people to help, if you can and if it is safe. Just continue to pray."
Everyone in your family got out before the storm that you know of?
"Well about half of them decided to stay in Houston. It was some unfortunate situations, being trapped. My mom actually came down and was here for the game. They headed back to east Texas and I think they are getting a little rain there too. But that's away from Houston. But yes, it's real."
About football, you've made it all the way through camp now, walk through tomorrow and you probably won't play on Thursday, so can you give your assessment on how you've been fitting into the scheme?
"Definitely looking forward to getting the season started. I feel like I'm fitting into the system well. I'm digesting the playbook and what they're asking me to do but I'm pretty good with that now. Things are crisp and crystal clear to me and those are all good signs, especially when you're a week and a half away from the season opener. I am feeling confident with what we have as a team, especially as an offense. We have a great running back lineup. There are going to be a lot of guys that are going to be able to contribute to what we're trying to accomplish."
Is the eagerness a little different knowing that you're finally about to start for real doing things that you maybe haven't done before or slightly different in terms of schemes and alignments, looks, stuff like that?
"Yes. When you get to that first week, you know exactly who you're going up against. It's just a little harder that first week because defense doesn't show as much in the preseason so you have to rely on what they did the year before. However, as the season progresses of course you'll have a lot of film and footage to watch. The offense, I'm sure won't be as open as it is now. It will be a smaller play sheet for us, which the play sheet I've been seeing is something I have never seen before. But it's going to be exciting to go through it and to see how a work week is here in New Orleans after being in Minnesota for 10 years."
Your thoughts on getting work with Mark (Ingram) and getting a rhythm together? What are your thoughts on being the second one in and coming on and off the field at times? Is that going to be tough for you to adjust to?
"It's something that I am not used to. But coming here it was something I was expecting. But actually going through it, it is like okay, this is different. When I sit back and I look at Mark (Ingram) and what he is able to do. I look at Alvin Kamara, (Daniel) Lasco, (Travaris) Cadet. It is like today, I was sitting back and I think we were in the red zone and we went Pony. We had AK go in and Cadet. I was sitting there thinking what's this defense going to do. You have two guys that are excellent route runners with great hands. For me, it's' never about being selfish. It's about being in a position to score and winning a game. I'm sure I'll have my opportunities to get in there as well. But when you have that many playmakers you have to put them in the game."
Even something like being the number two guy in the stretch line at times, how strange is that?
"Of course it's strange. But anything you want, you work for. I'm not the type of guy, no matter my status, to come in and say hey, I'm that first guy now. Mark has been here for a long time. I'm okay with that. I've been the guy for 10 years. I'm comfortable and confident with my ability and what I'm able to do. I do not let things like that bother me. To me, it is what it is. I still have a job to do and I'm going to do that."
You also like any professional athlete have a mindset that you will compete to see more snaps?
"Of course, I'm thinking week one. That's my mindset. I'm sure that's Mark's mindset and AK's. It better be or you're cheating yourself. When you want to be great you have to expect great things for yourself."
Running backs talk a lot about the more touches, the more volume, the better rhythm you can get into, is that something you're going to have to learn how to do it in a shorter time frame?
"I don't know. Once we start the season then I'll get a better feel. You have a guy in there that's being productive and really moving the chains, I'm sure you're going to want to stick with that guy, and I'm okay with that. If it's AK and Mark and they're moving the chains and getting down there, hey let that guy roll, he's going. But it's a different experience for me. I haven't done anything like that in 10 years. I'd be lying to you if I sit here and say I'm sitting on the sidelines like man, I wish I had that run or I wish I had that route. But it's not said in a selfish way or having any type of animosity towards these guys because that's just not how I am as an individual. I'm all about winning."
How did you evaluate your runs the other day watching the video?
"I wasn't pleased with two runs for sure. I think one was a draw. It's funny because when I got up and (Drew) Brees was like you have to slow down on that one. In my mind I thought I was slow but once I watched it I saw that I was going fast. If I was just a second slower, it would have bounced to the right side, I've made that cut several times. It was a 32 duo that I had that I pressed it was a little penetration but not too much from the right tackle or it could have been a tight end. I pressed it too deep and didn't think to take the chance to take it out but the outside (tackle)was there. Outside of that their defense was pretty good so they made some good plays as well. Overall, it was some good film to watch."
Are you more eager for this opener than you would be for any other opener?
"Yes, going back to Minnesota where I spent 10 seasons. Seeing those guys and being in that stadium again for me, personally, it doesn't get any better than that. To go down there and get the chance to come out with a W."
You mentioned Travaris Cadet, he's one of those guys number wise that you may see on the bubble. Are you able to give him advice although you've never been in that position and how tough it is?
"Honestly, I think he's been in the system so long, to me, and been around here for the time I've been (here). I feel like he's a guy we need. Cadet is a guy that knows the system in and out. He's a heck of a player. You talk about a guy that's making sacrifices, that's why it's easier for me. Cadet is a running back, he wants to run the ball as well and sometimes they don't get the opportunity. Those guys they want to run the ball and its basically their job and they do it well. For me, I haven't gotten a sense that he's on the bubble. I have a sense that he's the guy that does not have anything to worry about."
Thoughts on Ty Montgomery and working with him during the summer, what impressions did you get?
"A dedicated worker. He picked my brain and asked several questions just trying to get information on how I take care of my body and who I use, recovery as well. But the thing that stuck out to me the most was his work ethic. He came out and he competed and he didn't back down. I didn't see him taking breaks or taking shortcuts. He grinds. I see why he was able to come in for Green Bay from the wide receiver position and have the type of season that he had so I expect good things from him. They are good at the running back position at Green Bay."
How did you two get connected?
"Melvin Gordon ended up talking to him. Or course Melvin works out with me as well so I was like yes, come on down you are trying to come down and work out, I'm all for it. It was fun to have those guys around and see those youngsters. Let those youngers guys know that I'm still here. To be pushed and push those guys, that's what it's all about."