After a disappointing rookie season, receiver Henry Ruggs has put in a lot of work over the offseason to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself in 2021.
One way he’s done so is by packing on some more weight to his frame.
Ruggs told reporters in his Wednesday press conference that he gained about 13 pounds over the offseason. He said he took the initiative to do it, feeling like it should help him become a better overall player.
“It was my focus. It’s a man’s game now and I’m not the biggest guy, but I have to get to where I can compete with grown men now,” Ruggs said. “So that was one of my biggest things that I hammered on was getting bigger, eating all the time, and just hammering down in the weight room. And people [have been] saying I look noticeably bigger, so I guess it’s paying off.”
Ruggs noted there were times last season where he was blocking and felt he got moved off his spot a little too easily. The extra weight should help in that area. But Ruggs didn’t completely move away from the things that brought him to the league, like his speed.
“Even in the weight room, you work on different things, but when you’re gaining weight, you still have to do the little-guy things that I’m known for,” Ruggs said. “So, still hammered on those things and just got better in the things that I needed to work on.”
13 games last year, Ruggs caught 26 passes for 452 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Raiders are counting on the 2020 No. 12 overall pick to significantly improve in his second season, and with more muscle, he may do just that.