Receiver Kelvin Benjamin’s spring weigh-in was a bit irksome to Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera, but when he showed up for training camp last week he had a noticeable difference in his physique.
Rivera said to the Observer and live on WFNZ before Tuesday morning’s practice that Benjamin reported to camp at 243 pounds, which is substantially lighter than the mid-260’s at which he reported in the spring.
While at Florida State, Benjamin’s listed weight was 234 pounds.
Benjamin has been practicing hot yoga among other things to cut weight and improve his flexibility and quickness. While he has not thus far stood out of a very crowded pack of receivers, Rivera says he’s pleased with where Benjamin is – other than one play mid-workout on Tuesday, when second-year corner Daryl Worley pulled in a pick against Benjamin after hassling him all morning in coverage.
Instead, a large amount of attention has been focused on the explosive plays of many of the young, speedy and smaller receivers on the roster. Carolina is trying to find its answer in the slot and has crowded the position both in the draft and in free agency to allow a higher level of competition.
Benjamin, 26, has also been dealing with the death of his mother before camp. Benjamin announced her passing through an Instagram post, and added that being back around his teammates has helped his mental state.