Once again, the linebacker's weight is an issue in the offseason, but it looks like he's finally getting it under control.
Matt Zenitz was able to ask head coach John Harbaugh about Upshaw during the presser yesterday, with Harbaugh responding:
He looks like he’s in really good shape. We’ll start monitoring the weight a little more closely [but] he’s in the ballpark. It’s not like he’s out of shape, weight-wise. He’s close, no problem getting through practice. He looks good. We’re happy with him.
If you remember the 2012 offseason, Courtney Upshaw showed up to camp out of shape and unable to perform after being selected in the second round. Originally thought to be a first round talent, Upshaw slipped into the second round where the Ravens pounced on him and Ravens fans everywhere were excited. While Upshaw had offseason weight issues, he spent the offseason and training camp working hard to shed the pounds and eventually had a good season notching 60 tackles and 1.5 sacks and forcing a fumble in the Super Bowl. Last year saw Upshaw starting more games, but ultimately not being as effective with only 30 tackles and 1.5 sacks while splitting time with Elvis Dumervil on the outside.
With the weight issues supposedly behind the third year player, Upshaw should get a serious look as a 2 down run stuffing linebacker. Allowing Upshaw to come off on third downs gives the talented edge rusher Dumervil a chance to perform his talents and should keep both player fresh throughout the season. However with John Simon, Pernell McPhee and even Albert McClellan in competition for reps, Upshaw needs to continue to be on his coach's good list by keeping his weight down and hustling on the field.