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Broncos' OL Quinn Meinerz Dishes on Reason for 10-Pound Weight Loss

New year, new body.

In the NFL, offensive linemen are specifically monitored and regimented for their playing weight. The days of the sloppy and portly linemen that are there to take up space have been replaced by the no-huddle, energetic nature of the modern offense.

Look no further than that of Denver Broncos' nine-time Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson, whose high performance and fast-paced offenses have made him a future Hall-of-Famer and record-setter. Paired with first-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett, Denver’s new-look offense is expected to be electric, dynamic, and intense this season.

Broncos' second-year guard Quinn Meinerz concurs. 

“This offense is definitely predicated more on running the ball, running off the ball, being a lot faster and really trying to make the defense play the entire field,” said Meinerz on Thursday.

The 23-year-old Meinerz was drafted in the third round last year out of Wisconsin-Whitewater and burst onto the scene in Denver’s training camp. He competed for starting reps in camp at both the center and guard position. But that was in a totally different offense.

“Last year, I was floating a couple of pounds under 330,” Meinerz said when asked about his recent weight loss for the upcoming season.

“I kind of had a sense that this offense was going to be predicated on speed and I wasn’t happy with some of the positions I was in last year with some of the things that I was doing wrong," he said. "I took it upon myself to lose some weight, I’d say around 10 pounds. I’m trying to stay around 320 or a couple of pounds under. That’s where I’m feeling the best right now.”

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The underdog from a Division III college instantly became a favorite of Broncos Country throughout the season and was nicknamed ‘The Belly’ based on his love for crop-top jerseys at practice that displayed his prodigious gut. As a rookie, Meinerz played in 15 games, nine of which he started under former O-line coach Mike Munchak. 

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Meinerz also earned recognition for highlight reels replete with pancakes and blocking downfield, specifically against the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs.

In February, Hackett hired Butch Barry to succeed Munchak and he arrives in Denver with 20 years of coaching experience, specifically coaching O-line for 13 years. 

Barry has coached in the NFL for six years and was recently an assistant O-line coach with the San Francisco 49ers last season and had previously worked for the Green Bay Packers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

When asked about Barry’s coaching style, Meiners revealed that he's an intense character. 

“Coach Barry is an intense coach," Meinerz said." Everyone is intense. That’s what you love about being coached by someone like that. He’s really focused on getting us to run off the ball... So far, it’s been great to be coached by Coach Barry and I’m excited to keep progressing throughout the year with him.”

While Meinerz wouldn’t commit to which position he plans on playing in 2022, the road-grading blocker made it very clear that he’s been preparing for a critical role as a starter. The underdog and unknown status might be in the rear-view for Meinerz, but clearly, the fight remains.

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