Brown's Remarkable Transformation

Switching from tight end to offensive tackle can be tough, given the requirements needed to play the position successfully. But what is even more remarkable is when a 6-foot-6-inch, 250-pound tight end is able to increase his size to 300 pounds without gaining much body fat. That's just what Braden Brown did.

It was strange to see Braden Brown transform from a light 250-pound offensive tackle into a 300-pound man with arms one just doesn't buy at Walmart. So what was his secret?

"I pretty much ate seven times a day until I pretty much got sick to my stomach," Brown said. "I just worked out really hard. Me and Jordan Pendleton worked out really hard this offseason together. He helped me to get bigger and stronger and really pushed me hard over the summer. I owe a lot to him even though he's on the other side of the ball than me."

Brown had a lot of praise for Pendleton, a physical specimen in his own right.

"He's just a guy that I loved being around because of his work ethic," Brown said about Pendleton. "He's the kind of guy that just doesn't mess around, and that's the type of person you have to be when it comes to playing this game. He is just a freak of nature when it comes to the weight room. I figured I could get some tips from him. I feel a lot more stronger overall, but I do still need to continue improving on my strength and technique. I feel a lot more comfortable playing at the tackle position because of my size now."

While they are now strong allies, Brown and Pendleton strangely enough weren't always that way. The two had competed against each other while growing up and heavily resented each other. Now the two have forged a lasting friendship that was solidified through hard work in the weight room.

"He's improved a great deal," Pendleton said about Brown. "He worked really hard and would always get mad because his lifts didn't show as fast as he wanted it to. He just wanted to be able to be as strong and as big as he wanted to right now, and sometimes that just takes time. As long as that strength correlates out here on the field, he'll be fine. You look at him now and he is just a beast. He went from 250 to 300 pounds and looks really good. He doesn't have a gut or anything. When you look at him, he's an o-lineman but he doesn't have a gut and yet he's at 300 pounds. It's a credit to his work ethic and how he eats."

Usually the addition of that amount of weight takes a toll on the body, and an adjustment period is needed in order to get used to playing at that weight. On the first day of fall practice, however, Brown said his experience with his new and improved size has yielded the opposite results.

"Putting on the weight has really helped me in my run blocking and with my punching," said Brown. "Before when I was lighter, I would get off balance and get bull rushed a little bit. That also happened a couple of times today, which I'm not very happy about. But overall, my new size has helped me with my overall ability to play the position more effectively."

One might think Brown would single out the strength and size he gained as being the key reason he has improved. However, that wasn't the case. Instead, he credited watching film and also watching teammates such as Matt Reynolds.

"I would go in and pull up all of our games from last year and watch all the pass plays," said Brown. "I would study Matt on every single play and watch what he does really well. He does pretty much everything good, so he's a great guy to learn from and that's where I would say I progressed the most.

"He has also really helped me with my footwork, technique and my overall game. Also, doing footwork drills with him has helped me out a ton. I would watch and study those things and that has really helped me the most in my game."

Brown played tight end in high school and that was the position he was recruited to play at BYU. He spent a year at BYU before being switched to offensive tackle, something that he said was "absolutely" a good move.

"At first I was skeptical about making the switch, but now I wouldn't go back even if they wanted me to. I just love this position because I get to manhandle guys on every single play. It's just a war zone and I love it. I love the physicality of the position and it's just a grind every day. I just love it."

Motivated and hungry, Brown has set the bar high for his personal goals, and results are already taking shape. But those goals don't just stop with his own personal transformation; they involve the transformation of others as well.

"My personal goal is to do whatever I can to help this offensive line be the best," said Brown. "I just want to win every single day and get better every single day and help my offensive line win every single day. I'm going to help the guys that are behind me get better every single day and do what I can to help everyone else on the offensive get better."

The physical transformation to the bigger-yet-leaner look seems to be in fashion. In fact, the team posted the fastest average time ever on the run up Y Mountain.

"We beat the average of last year's team by I think over two minutes, and that's a great accomplishment," said Brown. "We had everybody working hard all offseason. We had guys drop a lot of weight and some body fat and I think that's been really beneficial and is going to help us a lot this season."

With Brown's new physique has come a new attitude, one which reflects the inner disposition of all the offensive linemen on this year's team.

"I think we came out here [Saturday] with the attitude that we're not going to mess around," Brown said. "This season, we're going to be more physical and we're going to make defenses fear us. That's our goal and I'm going to go back in and watch film to see how I did on this first day of practice. That's what I expect from this offensive line."


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