Back in November, we wrote an important sports article examining one of the fundamental issues of our time, asking the hard-hitting question that was on the minds of all Packers fans: Was Eddie Lacy fat?
Despite the empirical evidence (tubby pics), implicating injuries (ankle, groin) and severe statistical drop-off (he rushed for 400 fewer yards than he averaged over his first two years and his longest gain was 29) that seemed to confirm this hypothesis, Lacy never admitted he was heavy, nor did the Packers acknowledge a problem until after the season – one that ended with a 10-6 record and displayed all the offensive warts that would ultimately torpedo their Super Bowl hopes.
While some fans disagreed with our premise ("A girly looking blogger fat shaming a professional athlete," one commented on Facebook), coach Mike McCarthy confirmed what everyone had already known for months to be true at his season-ending press conference, saying in mid-January, "(Lacy) cannot play at the weight he played at this year."
Over the past six weeks, reports came out that the 25-year-old running back was going to train with Tony Horton – the creator of the P90X workout – eat healthier (perhaps no more "China food") and, per Packers mandate, lose 30 pounds. Ambitious stuff.
Well, fast-forward to now and it appears – from one picture, at least – that Lacy received the message and has taken it to heart. Or, more accurately, to gut.
This is a photo posted to Facebook by Horton's friend Bobby Stephenson, with the caption, "Crushing Shoulders and Arms P90X Style."
Now look, anyone who’s ever gone on a Tinder date understands that images can be manipulated and misleading. But certainly, even a posed picture of Lacy looking svelte with some workout bros (none of whom are wearing bro-tanks) is preferable to the in-uniform shots from last season of his belly hanging over his pants. So that's progress!
Though it appears to have since been taken down, in the PR-savvy world of professional sports and commercial fitness regimens, there's little doubt the photo was purposefully intended to garner positive social-media reaction.
Regardless of the mode he chooses to do it, Lacy knows his professional future in Green Bay depends on him losing weight (especially with those Matt Forte rumors swirling around), so it’s likely he’s going to report next season in excellent shape. That’s good news for the Packers and their fans, even if it’s bad news for girly-looking bloggers that like to fat-shame professional athletes.
Thanks for the memories, Fat Eddie. Here’s to a year of clean eating, healthy living and maybe a 4.3-yard rushing average.
Born in Milwaukee but a product of Shorewood High School (go ‘Hounds!) and Northwestern University (go ‘Cats!), Jimmy never knew the schoolboy bliss of cheering for a winning football, basketball or baseball team. So he ditched being a fan in order to cover sports professionally - occasionally objectively, always passionately. He's lived in Chicago, New York and Dallas, but now resides again in his beloved Brew City and is an ardent attacker of the notorious Milwaukee Inferiority Complex.
After interning at print publications like Birds and Blooms (official motto: "America's #1 backyard birding and gardening magazine!"), Sports Illustrated (unofficial motto: "Subscribe and save up to 90% off the cover price!") and The Dallas Morning News (a newspaper!), Jimmy worked for web outlets like CBSSports.com, where he was a Packers beat reporter, and FOX Sports Wisconsin, where he managed digital content. He's a proponent and frequent user of em dashes, parenthetical asides, descriptive appositives and, really, anything that makes his sentences longer and more needlessly complex.
Jimmy appreciates references to late '90s Brewers and Bucks players and is the curator of the unofficial John Jaha Hall of Fame. He also enjoys running, biking and soccer, but isn't too annoying about them. He writes about sports - both mainstream and unconventional - and non-sports, including history, music, food, art and even golf (just kidding!), and welcomes reader suggestions for off-the-beaten-path story ideas.