T Nation

Urlacher's M&F Workout

If I recall correctly, Troy Polamolu has dedicated himself to a plyo and agility-type of workout. While at USC he followed their S&C program, which was somewhat traditional, but once in the pros he changed up a bit.

[quote]t3h_Squirr3l wrote:
Did anyone happen upon the latest issue of Muscle and Fiction with Brian Urlacher gracing the cover ? I wanted to ask all of your opinions on a few things.

  1. 555 pound squats for a 6’4" and 245 lb college athlete and 405 on clean, (very) good or (very) bad ?

  2. Never maxing out in the off-season; Smart idea ? I can understand the logic in-season.

  3. What’s with all the machines ? I also read the very short Ronnie Brown interview near the front and he talked about not squatting, that you have to have ‘perfect form’ or you would get hurt of free weights (no shit). Also, lat pulldowns ? Ewww. It just seems like a giant cop-out to me, not learing to squat, clean, snatch and deadlift properly.

  4. Did ANYONE get wtf the strength coach was going on about in his training methodologies which were in italics ?

  5. Why no deadlifting or cleans ?

  6. It seems like Urlacher’s routine is not about getting stronger but more of a maintenance workout for sport-specific purposes. There is a lot of core, plyo and agility work, which imo, is very smart. Is this the case with most NFL programs ?

  7. Personally, I liked the article, but did anyone else like it ? What did you think of the workout over-all ? [/quote]

Having worked with an NFL team and working on the side with pro athletes, while at the collegiate level, I can tell you that most NFL lifting programs are pretty vanilla when it comes to getting stronger. The approach is not about development at this level. Either you can contribute right away, or you get cut, it’s about that simple.

So it boils down to can you play or not, and as a result, the lifting and conditioning programs reflect that. I worked with one of the real freaks of the NFL, and to be honest, it didn’t matter what the hell he did in training…he was gifted and was going to be better than everyone whether or not if he squatted or did one legged standing on a Bosu ball while shaking the stability stick in the opposite arm.

Most of the lifting done is strictly as injury prevention, especially In-Season. The Off-Seasons programs are set up so that you can get back to strength and get healthy. This approach is fine because you’re dealing with the mutants of the freaks to begin with, and these programs are good enough for 90% of the team. It’s the fringe 10% that sort of gets screwed out of their development, but the truth is that those are the guys that are worried about their jobs to begin with.

So as the S&C coach, your prime job becomes NOT getting anyone hurt while training, and this is why the workouts never really push guys to get stronger and faster. In fact, most teams will actively go out of their way to hire HIT/machine guys because they perceive that form of training to be less dangerous than training closed-chain.

The guys I tend to work with seem to be the fringe guys who recognize that they either need to get faster, stronger, or both. I like working with these guys because one, they’re at the highest level of competition, and two, they want to work hard and get better, so they listen to the coaching rather than blow you off.

6’4 260 is impressive size, but definitely not huge. However, Urlacher’s game on the field is huge. I feel that a lot of people have gotten size and ability mixed up when it comes to NFL players.

If we look at other players in the league, some of the best are not necessarily the biggest.

[quote]Arioch wrote:
Nicholas F wrote:
t3h_Squirr3l wrote:
Urlacher apparently is 260 now. lol @ Urlacher being a ‘speed’ linebacker…he’s scary, not just fast.

Dude, there are PLENTY of linebackers with better numbers than that. Urlacher relies in his speed just as much as anything.

Keep in mind, Urlacher was a Safety in college. They converted him to LB because of his ability to cover the field and make hard hits. He added mass in the form of muscle to be able to handle the brutality of being a LB.

All in all, an impressive guy to watch play the sport.[/quote]