JaMarcus Russell Is Fat No Longer, Dreaming Of NFL Comeback

JaMarcus Russell was run out of the NFL for poor play and an expanding waistline, but now the former No. 1 pick is hoping to change that.

With eyes on a comeback this year, Russell has made a commitment to getting in shape and getting his game back.

It already shows. The former Oakland Raiders quarterback tweeted a picture where he looks downright svelte, boasting that he dropped 51 pounds already.

JaMarcus Russell still has to prove himself on the field, but the weight loss will go a long way to help with his comeback. One of the biggest knocks on Russell before was that he was too lazy, unwilling to put in the work that came with being a NFL player. His rapid weight loss now shows that he’s willing to do what it takes to play in the league.

It also demonstrates that JaMarcus Russell isn’t dismissing his critics. When he announced his intention to return to the NFL, Russell heard several league sources say he needed to drop a significant amount of weight to even have a chance. At the time he weighed more than 300 pounds, but Russell quickly went to work, dropping over 50 pounds.

Earlier this month JaMarcus Russell was called in by the Chicago Bears for a workout. Reports said that Russell showed a strong arm and poise in the pocket during throwing drills, but he was still a bit rusty.

Though the Bears passed on signing Russell, NFL insiders said his strong showing would help legitimize his comeback. A few more strong workouts and he could find his way onto an NFL roster, especially given that several teams are struggling at quarterback.

“Well, he’s gonna come in looking more athletic. Even when he was heavier, he was pretty good on his feet. But he’s gonna be so much better on his feet,” said former NFL quarterback Jeff Garcia on the “Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “The natural abilities for him to throw the ball as people said when he was coming out of LSU — he is impressive in that way. He does have just the natural technique. That ball comes out so smooth, so effortlessly. It’s slick, it rotates. It goes the way that you would like it to go. I think more so than anything, though, it’s gonna be his confidence [the Bears will see].”

JaMarcus Russell managed only 25 starts in his two-year NFL career, but made more than $30 million in three seasons with the Raiders.