Nick Fairley has battled weight issues throughout his NFL career. His demotion from the starting lineup this summer made him do something about it.
The Detroit Lions defensive tackle hired a personal chef after he was benched in favor of veteran C.J. Mosley midway through training camp. Fairley has dropped 10 pounds since then and has regained his starting job ahead of Monday night's opener against the New York Giants.
Fairley said his change in diet improved his play on the field.
"I feel a whole lot better just by not putting that bad stuff in my body," Fairley said, according to the Detroit Free Press. "You feel the energy, you feel it out there at practice."
Fairley now brings breakfast and lunch with him to the Lions' practice facility. When he gets home, he eats a prepared meal stored in his refrigerator. Fairley says he's mostly avoided fast food, which has made a big difference.
"That's something that we've been having planned from even OTAs last year, it's just I never really got along with it," Fairley said of his new diet. "I just felt like I could do it on my own. But I went to (my agent after my demotion) and was like, 'Let's give it a shot, give it a try.' "
Fairley's weight issues and sluggish start to training camp made the Lions look smart for not picking up the final year option on his rookie deal. He'll have to remained disciplined to his diet -- and productive on the field -- to keep Detroit's interest beyond 2014.
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