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“He Wants to be Dwayne Johnson”: Cooper Kupp Reveals What it Was Like Working Out With ‘Baby Rhino’ Aaron Donald

Aditya Rajput

Aaron Donald Expresses Interest in Hollywood After Hanging Up His Football Boots: "You See These Good Looks"

Aaron Donald and Cooper Kupp have been one of the most famous offensive-defensive duos of the NFL. They put on quite a show for the L.A Rams until last season. Moreover, the two players have a great friendship, one that Cooper Kupp spoke about while he was on Julian Edelman’s podcast.

Kupp spoke fondly of his old teammate, talking about the kind of impact the two of them were able to generate for the Rams. And as the conversation steered in the direction of off-season training, Kupp even divulged details about how off-season training with Donald, the “baby rhino,” used to be.

While Kupp was in awe of the effort the tackle put behind working out, he also slyly pointed out that Donald had less than conventional working out methods. Once the WR joined him in a training session and it was hilariously just one and a half hours of arm workouts. He even revealed what he thinks is Donald’s secret wish and said,

“The thing is he wants to be Dwayne Johnson. So he wants to be he wants to be the Rock and so he spends so much time lifting, and its not even like functional lifts sometimes. I worked out with him one time…one and a half hours of straight arms.”

While the wide receiver would explosively run touchdowns, Donald was a force of nature on the defensive end. Kupp marveled at the kind of effort Donald used to put in during off-season training, especially in the weight room. He further recalled a particular arm workout session, wherein Donald worked out on just his arms for an hour and a half.

And Kupp isn’t too far from the truth. Although the stereotype of defensive players is to be slow, bulky, and strong, Donald has been defying the norm. Since entering the league, the tackle has put a lot of energy and focus into his fitness. In fact, Donald revealed once that since he entered the league, he was able to become fitter.

How NFL Changed Aaron Donald

Since he entered the league, Donald had been different. He has proven time and time again that he is faster and stronger than most of the other defensive tackles in the league. While the typical defensive player is big, slow, and strong, Donald was a rare sighting of fast, strong, and explosive on the defensive end of things.

When he was drafted, he clocked in at a whopping 280 pounds. But he rarely played at that weight in his career.

Per the Rams Wire, Donald was on Chris Long’s podcast where he revealed that he has played while being in the shocking weight range of 250-260 pounds. Baby Rhino played in the NFL while being a whopping 30 pounds lighter than the weight his listed weight. For his defensive position, that kind of weight change is absolutely unprecedented.

Moreover, it is shocking how effective he was despite being so much lighter than other defensive players in his position. What’s even more appalling is that despite the loss in weight, Donald never lost his original strength and power. Due to his extensive lifting routine and fitness regimen, the defensive tackle was effectively one of the best defensive players to ever walk on the gridiron.

About the author

Aditya Rajput

Aditya Rajput


Aditya Rajput is an NFL writer at The Sports Rush. Aditya has a blazing interest in the NFL and has been watching the sport since high school. He has been an avid watcher of the game and understands the nuances of the sport. He has been partial to the Kansas City Chiefs with one exception: Tom Brady.

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