Weight-loss, Grief, and the Gridiron

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Eagles right guard Shawn Andrews is on a mission this off-season: beat the battle of the bulge. Staff writer Ashley Fox explains Andrews wouldn't let himself to hit the four hundreds despite some terrible news:

After the Eagles' season ended in January, Andrews gained 10 pounds, pushing perilously close to a weight that began with the number four. He made a decision. Enough was enough. He had to stop.

In April, weeks into a diet that was showing results, Andrews went to a park near his Arkansas home with a childhood buddy named Willie. The two had ridden the bus together to third grade, had pigged out in home economics class, had played hoops. Like Andrews, Willie was a big man, but unlike Andrews, he had stopped working out years ago.

That day, Andrews and Willie sat at the park watching the cars go by, talking about their lives and winking at girls. Afterward, Andrews went to Subway, ordering a chicken teriyaki sandwich on whole wheat bread, Sun chips, and a bottle of water. Two hours later, he got the call. Willie was dead, apparently of a heart attack brought on by high blood pressure. He was 23.

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