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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Ryan Zitkus, DE, St. Ambrose University

Ryan Zitkus St. Ambrose
Saint Ambrose College edge rusher/linebacker Ryan Zitkus recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Ryan Zitkus
  • Height: 6’1”
  • Weight: 235
  • Position: DE/ Rush Linebacker
  • College: St. Ambrose University
  • Twitter: @ryan_zitkus

What is the best restaurant in your hometown city?

  • Avantis, Italian food at its best!

When breaking down your film what will stick out?

  • My ability to stop the run.

If you won the lotto, what is the first thing you would do with the money?

  • I would probably buy the Chicago Bears and then go meet all of the players.

What has been your biggest failure?

  • Not winning a conference championship at St. Ambrose, at least not yet

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

  • Probably being adaptable, I started out as a linebacker and moved to defensive end last year. I also play defensive tackle and nose guard sometimes. 

Who is the hardest working teammate on your team?

  • This is easily the hardest question because there are a lot of guys that put in a ton of work and are all in to make the team better, but if I had to pick one it would probably be Liam Kelly. He is a natural leader and will always push himself and his teammates to be successful. 

Have you ever had a nickname? What is it?

  • Zit. My last name is Zitkus, so yeah. That was only at my last school though. 

What is your degree in, if you do not make it as a football player, what is your dream job?

  • I graduated in December 2019 with my bachelor of arts in psychology and am currently in the doctorate of occupational therapy program at SAU. I hope to become an occupational therapist that specializes in mental health someday, possibly with my own practice!

What is your coolest life moment?

•When I got to hold my nephew, Aaron, for the first time. I had to wait to go home and see him due to having a football game two years ago, so that added to the excitement! 

What song would you sing at Karaoke night?

  • You’re the One That I Want by John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, I would need a partner though. 

If you could pick any actor to play you in a movie, who are you picking?

  • Chris Pratt

Who is your favorite football team?

  • The Chicago Bears!

Check out NFL Draft Diamonds 2021 Small School Rankings

If you had a warning label, what would yours say?

  • I’m pretty competitive with anything I do, even if it’s just a card game.

What is your biggest fear?

  • Snakes

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL?

  • Allen Robinson, I may be biased as a Bears fan but oh well.

Take us through game day, How do you prepare?

  • Wake up, drink a cup of coffee, go to team breakfast, relax and watch ESPN, go to locker room, drink Bang energy drink and get ready, go to field and walk it while blasting my ears with music. 

Do you have any hobbies?

  • I like going to the lake a lot!

If you had to compare yourself to someone in the NFL, who would that be?

  • Joey Bosa, I like to watch his film and study his technique. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

  • My parents. They have supported me through everything I have gone through and have always been there for me. I do everything I do in part because of them. They make me want to be successful in everything I do. They have made countless sacrifices for me and I hope to be like the both of them someday. 

What motivates you to work hard?

  • My family, my teammates, and everyone that played before me, especially my grandpa who played football at St. Ambrose.

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at nfldraftdiamonds@gmail.com

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