It's never a good feeling to have your head coach question your eating habits.
That's exactly what happened to Ravens outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw, who saw his weight rise to 295 pounds when the Ravens reported for offseason workouts. After Upshaw showed up, it prompted coach John Harbaugh to tell reporters, when asked, that Upshaw's weight gain has due to poor eating habits.
With the Ravens bringing in Elvis Dumervil to start opposite of Terrell Suggs, it would appear Upshaw's role would stay the same as a substitution package linebacker that can move around and play multiple positions. Football players are prideful by nature. If Upshaw wants to play primarily as a pass rusher, he'd need to prove he can by being in shape and by playing fast on the football field.
Whatever Upshaw's ultimate motivation was, he bought in. According to Aaron Wilson at The Baltimore Sun, who talked to Troy Jones, the head trainer at the training center TZ Sports in Eldersburg, Md., Upshaw has lost about 20 pounds since the end of mimicamp.
"Courtney has been very consistent and has dropped about 20 pounds from 295 pounds and has been fluctuating between 275 pounds to 278 pounds," Jones told The Baltimore Sun. "He's been very dedicated. He has a great work ethic, he works extremely hard. He's a quiet guy. When Courtney makes up his mind, he doesn't hesitate. He'll pass the conditioning test. Courtney is very explosive."
Upshaw battled weight issues throughout the 2012 offseason as well. It appears he thrives better, in that standpoint, when he's around the structure the team facility provides.
During the spring, Upshaw told reporters he had a personal issue to deal with but that he needed to be in football shape. If he's truly in the 275-pound range, we'll know soon enough as training camp begins early next week.
As a rookie, Upshaw finished the 2012 season with 60 combined tackles, 1.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. He was the 35th overall pick in the 2012 draft out of the University of Alabama.