(Photo: Reuters/Dave Kaup)
JaMarcus Russell has lost 27 pounds as he fights a battle to get back into the NFL for the coming season, according to reports.
Russell was famously the No. 1 draft pick for the 2007 season, but over recent years put on a lot of weight, reportedly reaching 315 pounds earlier this year.
He has been spending the last few months looking to get back in shape and has recently said he is no longer "breathing like a fat man." However, he still recognizes that he has a long way to go to make a full recovery to fitness, and even then a lot of work to get back to his best football wise.
Russell started a tough regime to get back into shape in February, according to a report by the Bleacher Report. At that time he was said to have weighed 315 pounds.
Since then, by sticking to his intense work outs and training at the TEST Academy in San Diego, he has managed to lose 27 pounds to reach 288 pounds. He still, however, aims to drop another 18 pounds to reach his target weight of 270 pounds.
Russell has said: "Through the first couple weeks I could barely make it through the workout. … It was crazy. We go in to do the warm-up and here I am breathing like a fat man. So now I'm breathing pretty good and able to stand up on my own two feet," according to Bleacher.
The last time Russell played in the NFL was more than three years ago, way back in January 2010.
Since then he has dropped out of the reckoning and fell into football obscurity, however, he has scheduled a pro day for April 10, and is hoping to get some interest from a number of NFL teams at that time if he can continue to get himself back into top shape.
Here is a video by Bleacher Report on JaMarcus Russell's comeback efforts: