Texans defensive end N.D. Kalu tries to get by a Saints player during their practice.
Houston Texans defensive end N.D. Kalu is entering his 11th year in the NFL. He played collegiately right down the street from the Texans at Rice University.
1. How competitive is the defensive end position this year?
"Real competitive. You see the competition we got for the starting right end, but what people don't realize, when you got competition for starters, it trickles down. So all of us are trying to get in line and win a spot behind Earl or Weaver."
2. What is the key to lasting so long in the NFL?
"Just taking care of your body. Every year during the offseason, whether I'm working out with the team or working out on my own, I never really take too much time off. I think that's kind of what's helped me."
3. What kind of advice do you give the younger players?
"Just work hard. Just always know that someone out there is working harder than you. If you keep that mentality, next thing you know you will be in the league nine or ten years."
4. How is it playing in the NFL in the same city you played in during college?
"That's beautiful. That was always my dream, to finish my career in Texas. And to be in Houston, it's a dream come true because I get a chance to visit my Rice University, see their games. A lot of my friends are still here in Houston. This is home to me."
5. How often do you get to go to Rice football games?
"I think last year I made it to like three games, which is pretty good considering I haven't been to one for like six years before that. I'm trying to make three, three home games."
6. What do you do in your free time?
"I have a big family so I like to spend time with my kids, my wife. I also have a real estate business so I don't really have much free time. But I enjoy what I do off the field so it feels like a hobby even though it's life after football."
7. What is something your teammates and fans don't know about you?
"That's a good question. I'm a huge fan of Dallas, the soap opera. Like a huge fan. I have a signed picture of Jerry Ewing in my office."
8. What are you most looking forward to during the trip to New Orleans?
"Just staying healthy and getting some good stuff on tape so other teams can see what I can do."
9. What do you gain from having joint practices with the Saints?
"The fact that you are going against different people. It gets old going against your guys for two weeks straight. It just lets you see where you are with different competition."
10. What kind of music do you have on your IPod?
"I got Marvin Gaye, Scarface. I'm from Houston so I have to keep that Scarface in there and a lot of R&B."