Sakamoto: 49ers’ OLB Eli Harold Hit With ‘Body Analyses’ From GM Trent Baalke

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It’s hard enough adjusting to the NFL game. The physical abuse that players endure during the course of a 16-game regular season, can take a toll on the body. It’s even harder when your general manager asks you to add x amount of weight to play your position.

It’s no secret San Francisco 49ers GM Trent Baalke wants his players to bulk up at certain positions. From former 49ers guard G Joe Looney (Dallas Cowboys) to DE Tank Carradine, Baalke wants his players to have a certain look down in the trenches and second-year OLB Eli Harold is no different.

Checking in at the combine at 6-3, 247, Harold has been asked to add 18 pounds in order to play opposite of third-year OLB Aaron Lynch.

Harold admits the transition has been hard. “The first two weeks of training was kind of hard. My back was tight when I got here with ‘Uye’ [Mark Uyeyama Strength & Conditioning Coach]. He helped me a lot telling me some stretches.”

Other NFL teams [Chicago Bears] are wary of players adding weight because it would compromise their speed, agility, and quickness. “[Head Coach] John [Fox] always says this ‘we can always get them stronger and bigger, but we can’t get them faster and more athletic,’ and he’s definitely fast and athletic, which he will add,” when talking about his first-round pick OLB Leonard Floyd.

Floyd checked in at the combine at 6-6, 244, and ironically was given the NFL comparison of Harold.

With Harold carrying the extra weight, let’s hope that will help him be a better fundamentally sound player, particularly when setting the edge.

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of, 49ers Beat Writer, Live Game Day Correspondent for Bleacher Report and member of Pro Football Writers of America. Born and raised in San Jose, he also graduated from San Diego State University. His work has been featured on NFL Network, 95.7 The Game, National Football Post, Sports Illustrated, FanSided Network, ESPN Radio, CBS Sports 810, and NBC Bay Area News. For more information, please contact him via email at or call him at (408) 622-0996.