Considering his disappointing rookie season, defensive end Taco Charlton’s swag and confidence may seem out of place.
With just three sacks and no starts in 2017, the bust label has been whispered about the first-round pick from Michigan.
But you wouldn’t know it listening to Charlton talk and bandy about throughout the offseason and training camp.
He is the self-proclaimed best trash-talker on the team and has nicknamed the defensive line the Hot Boys.
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
“We’re hungry,” Charlton said. “We’re a young unit and hungry to prove ourselves, and prove what we can do out there. I think we’ll be good and have a bright future ahead of us.”
Charlton was talking about the unit, but deep down, he was talking about himself.
No one has more to prove than him after his disappointing rookie season, in which he drew criticism from Hall of Fame defensive end Charles Haley.
And no one is hungrier to do so.
Charlton is bigger and decidedly stronger in heading into year two because of an intense offseason workout program where he followed Pro Bowl defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence from gym to gym.
Charlton said he doesn’t feel any extra pressure because of the work he has put in. Now he’s ready to show it.
“I definitely believe that,” Charlton said. “Getting a year under you and knowing what to expect, and finding that comfort level, and playing at this level for a year, and knowing what to work on has been a blessing for me.”
It has made him more comfortable and confident, and seemingly ready to explode.
Like a Hot Boy should.