Is a big year looming on the horizon for LenDale White?
The Tennessee Titans began their journey to the 2009 NFL season by starting their offseason workouts this week. To the surprise of many, LenDale arrived with a sleek look that even Jenny Craig would be proud of, thanks to an impressive twenty-pound weight loss.
White's decision to shrink his waistline couldn't have come at a better time in his career.
With the expanding role of Chris Johnson and the pressure that comes with performing at an optimal level during a contract season, a svelter White has all the motivation in the world to accomplish bigger and better things in 2009.
White's commitment to a more dedicated offseason regimen has been a source of enjoyment for Titans' strength and conditioning coach Steve Watterson:
"He came in this offseason over 20 pounds lighter than he was last year at this time. He came in yesterday and today and both days have been excellent workouts...After Day 2, he's holding strong."
Watterson's singing of LenDale's praises is undoubtedly music to the ears of Titans' fans who have been impatiently awaiting White to round into good shape.
LenDale is blessed with the quick feet of a tailback while possessing the stature of a fullback. However, his lack of adequate conditioning has undoubtedly played a key role in his inability to fulfill his vast potential so far in Nashville.
Of course, the pot of gold that's potentially awaiting him at the end of the rainbow a.k.a. his contract season was without question a prominent factor in White's decision to shed some pounds. A huge year will probably establish him as one of the more coveted running backs on the 2010 RB free agent market.
Unfortunately for White, there's only one football to go around and if recent reports are true, Chris Johnson is going to be seeing a lot more of the pigskin in 2009.
Apparently, the Titans are committed to utilizing CJ more along the lines of your traditional feature back next year, with LenDale only being used in short-yardage situations. An increased workload for Dash equates to a lesser role for Smash, which could be a potential dagger in White's bid to have a breakout season next fall.
Regardless of his number of carries next year, it's a breath of fresh air to see White arrive in tip-top shape instead of his customary round one. A fitter LenDale can only be a positive for the Titans' offense in 2009.
Your turn, guys: Is White poised to have a breakout year?