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The NFL Network recently uploaded a YouTube video that shows how the Washington Redskins ensure their players are well-fed and get all the nutrients they need to keep performing week after week. The industrial-sized kitchen cooks up 40 pounds of chicken, 30 pounds of Chilean sea bass, and 60 pounds of salmon during the average lunch rush.
That’s a lot of food, and it doesn’t even include the thin-crust pizzas and heaps of pasta cooked up by Executive Chef Conner McGuire and his team. You can watch the culinary crew in action here:
Jake Sankal, the Redskins’ nutritionist and assistant strength conditioning coach, said the kitchen was specially designed so the players could easily get the food they need to maintain peak condition. “Nutrition is really key throughout camp,” Sankal said. “We’re trying change body composition, we’re trying to improve strength, increase power, improve conditioning.”
According to Sankal, no player eats fewer than 3,000 calories per day, and some get upwards of 5,000. Some players require more protein, carbs, or fat than others. That’s where McGuire’s expertise comes in—the chef crafts his meals around each player’s needs.
“They’re getting a quality meal that’s also helping them perform on the field,” the chef said.
Those meals include a 550-calorie Mediterranean stir fry bowl—complete with sautéed chicken and veggies, roasted red pepper hummus, and rice—and a 580-calorie grilled pork tenderloin served alongside roasted broccolini.
And then there’s the make-your-own smoothie bar, where, according to Sankal, the team could go through 150 to 200 cases of protein in an eight-week period.
“Every single thing we do here is geared toward making them better as a football player,” Sankal said.
With the amount of work these players put in, it only makes sense that they need some quality fuel—and a lot of it..