Justin Tuck says he didn’t work hard enough last year

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Giants defensive end Justin Tuck missed four games last season and had just five sacks, and he now says he struggled in part because he wasn’t in great shape.

Tuck told ESPN that he has been working much harder this offseason because he’s motivated by what happened when he didn’t work hard enough last offseason. The lockout allowed Tuck time to travel and relax, but he now believes he had too much rest and relaxation in 2011.

I definitely didn’t work as hard as I should’ve last year,” Tuck said. “The lockout was going on. I took a trip to Africa. There were some things I did in the past that I didn’t do last summer.”

Tuck has eschewed lifting weights and is instead doing offseason work that includes obstacle courses and uphill sprints, including runs up a steep incline dubbed “Puke Hill.” So it sounds like he’s more than making up for an easy offseason last year.