Offensive lineman Greg Van Roten is noticeably heavier this year to help with his transition from college tackle to an interior lineman in the NFL.
Van Roten said that he gained 12 pounds, up to 315, by changing his eating habits after consulting with Mark Lovat, the Packers’ strength and conditioning coordinator.
“I feel a lot stronger, a lot more stout,” Van Roten said. “Last year I was a little light, more finesse, was on the ground a little bit. If you’re able to move at that (heavier) weight and still be athletic and be effective, it’s only going to help you.”
Van Roten has been working with the No. 2 offense at both guards and center. He and Don Barclay are battling for the backup center job behind Evan Dietrich-Smith, though for the past two practices Barclay has been getting the first snaps at center and Van Roten at left guard when the No. 2 offensive line replaces the starters.
Van Roten said that his new eating regimen took him from three full meals a day to six smaller meals that increased in size s the offseason went on. He'd played tackle in college at Penn and didn't switch to guard and center until the Packers signed him just before the start of training camp last year.
“The smaller meals get your metabolism going, and you increase the portion sizes gradually to slow your metabolism,” Van Roten said. “That will help you put on good weight. And I’ve been working out a lot, weight training and stuff like that.”