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News » New DL Redding shrinking to fit with Seahawks

New DL Redding shrinking to fit with Seahawks

New DL Redding shrinking to fit with Seahawks
SEATTLE (AP) - A much-need run stuffer? Nah, Cory Redding is done with stuffing.

Redding arrived Monday at Seahawks headquarters to start offseason conditioning two days after Seattle traded Pro Bowl linebacker Julian Peterson to Detroit for him. Despite his billing, Redding does not see himself as a defensive tackle. He only played that role by necessity with the Lions.

"I've always been, in my eyes, a small guy," Redding said, knowing in the NFL, "small" is a relative term.

The 6-foot-4 Redding gorged himself to get from 285 to 300 pounds in 2006, after injuries along Detroit's defensive line forced the Lions to move him inside from end.

For him, the weight gain was as easy as ordering one, two and three from a menu of fast-food value meals.

"Man, I came from a big family. We love to eat," the 28-year-old said, chuckling through the telephone Monday. "I didn't spare the food any leniency, I'll tell you that."

He also devoured quarterbacks that season. He had eight sacks in 2006, five more than he has had in any one season before or since.

The Lions rewarded him with a seven-year contract worth nearly $50 million in 2007, and - presto! - he was a rich, 300-pound tackle.

"Right now, I'm in the process of slimming down," Redding said on his first full day with his new team. "I weigh 297 right now. My goal is 285."

He said that will fit the Seahawks' vision of him being an end on first and second downs, as he was when Detroit drafted the native of Houston in the third round out of Texas in 2003. Redding said the Seahawks also told him to retain the versatility to move inside on third downs, to pass rush against slower guards.

Team president Tim Ruskell said on Saturday when he broke up one of the league's most dynamic and expensive linebacker corps to get Redding and a fifth-round pick in next month's draft that he values him for his ability to play multiple positions along the defensive line.

This should be a warning to Seattle's two incumbent ends. Two-time Pro Bowl end Patrick Kerney is 32 and has had major shoulder injuries in each of the last two seasons that has resulted in surgeries, though Kerney says he's farther along in his recovery this time and that he will be ready for the first game. Inconsistent Darryl Tapp has struggled to fulfill the potential that led the Seahawks to draft him in the second round in 2006.

Of course, Redding doesn't want to stir up a competition on Day One of his new job, six months before the first game.

"Man, I'm a football player. No matter what you want, inside or outside, put me out there and I'll play," he said.

The fact he just escaped the first NFL team to go 0-16 in a season would seem to be reason enough to smile, yet he didn't acknowledge that.

"I'm just excited to have the opportunity to play football once again with an organization that has a winning tradition like this one," Redding said. "I had six good years in Detroit. Detroit has been good to me. I'm leaving a lot of friends there.

"But that's in the past now."

Just like his eating binges and days spent exclusively playing tackle.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 17, 2009

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