MERIDIAN — He has beaten the odds to extend his career, earned a big free-agent payday and won a Super Bowl championship.
Now Daryn Colledge, entering his eighth NFL season, is being challenged anew. The elder statesman of the 20 Boise State players currently in the NFL is being shifted from left guard to right guard by the Arizona Cardinals.
"It's not what I want it to be, but for me that's good in my career right now. It's going to get me hungry," Colledge said Saturday at Meridian High, where he served as one of the coaches at the fifth annual Gridiron Dreams Football Academy.
That hunger - not diminished by the length of his career, his paycheck or the Super Bowl ring - is what drives Colledge, who has played in every game since his freshman year at Boise State.
A four-year starter with the Broncos, Colledge has played in all 112 possible games in the NFL, including 108 starts. He has started 16 games in each of the past five seasons.
"He's a professional. He knows how to go in and get his work done and he's extremely consistent, and I admire that and try to emulate that," said former Boise State tackle Nate Potter, entering his second year with the Cardinals. "He also stays healthy and that's awesome. Part of the NFL is staying on the field, and he takes care of his body, and it's not an accident that he's played this long."
Watch the way Colledge attacks any task, whether it's a promotional radio appearance or a teaching drill with young players, and it becomes more obvious how he has maintained his place in the league far longer than most players.
On Saturday, there was Colledge fully immersed in running drills for the youngest of 325 campers at Gridiron Dreams. There was no going through the motions for Colledge. These kids were getting all he had.
Just like his NFL employers.
Colledge signed a five-year, $27.5 million deal with Arizona in 2011 after five seasons and one championship with Green Bay, which picked him in the second round of the 2006 draft.
"I worked with a group of guys, gentlemen like Chris Strausser and Coach (Chris) Pete(rsen), professional guys that went about work in a certain way and expected us to do it in a certain way. You carry that into the NFL and eventually you realize that's the only way you know how to do anything," Colledge said.
"I think you just teach these young guys (from Boise State) how to work. It's not always going to be easy, but we're going to go about this in a certain way and we're going to ge the job done, and that's the only way we can do it."
Potter is absorbing those lessons as quickly as possible. A seventh-round pick in 2012 who earned six starts last year, the former Timberline star is competing for the starting right tackle spot in Arizona, so the right side of the Cardinals' offensive line could have a blue-and-orange feel to it.
"Nate was a kid that wanted to get better," said Colledge, 31. "He'd put in the work. When you've got a young guy like that, it motivates you as an old guy to stay on your toes."
There is no time to rest in the NFL. The team is always trying to get better. Someone is always trying to take your job. Arizona drafted left guard Jonathan Cooper with the No. 7 pick in the first round, necessitating Colledge's move to the right side for the first time in his career.
Colledge has been working at right guard throughout the offseason, and he believes he can make the transition in time for the season.
The Cardinals have a new coaching staff and a new starting quarterback (Carson Palmer) after last year's 5-11 campaign.
At a new spot, with new coaches, Colledge wants to be his same dependable self.
Show up everyday, put in the work, be dependable, compete.
"Everyone has ups and downs in their career. You'll make it through more of the downs if you remain on the field and you put yourself in position to work. In this league, in college or anything, you've got to be out there working and show your coaches what you can do," Colledge said.
"My ability to stay on the field and continue playing has allowed me to continue in my career. I want coach to look at me and say, 'You're a guy we rely on, a guy we know is going to be out there.' I want them to start worrying about the next guy. I don't want them worrying about me."
Go worry about someone else. Daryn Colledge is still hungry. Still capable. Still a professional willing to bring it every day.
Brian Murphy: 377-6444, Twitter: @MurphsTurph