In order to produce at or anywhere near the level of Nick Bosa, it requires just as much hard work off the field as on the field.
As the 49ers' star defensive end is preparing for a matchup against quarterback Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday in the wild-card round of the NFL playoffs, Bosa's work off the field has played an integral role in his success this season.
The third-year pass-rusher made his return to the field this season after sustaining a torn ACL in Week 2 of the 2020 season. He was able to pick up right where he left off and even improved upon his rookie season where he took home Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.
Now likely in contention for 2021 Defensive Player of the Year, Bosa's hard work on and off the field throughout his recovery has played a huge role in his monster 15.5-sack season.
Bosa sat down with NFL Media's Steve Wyche ahead of Sunday's big game, where he discussed how he has stayed so healthy this season and the strict diet he continues to follow off the field.
"I'm hanging in," Bosa said. "I'm actually coming around really well, I think I'm progressing as the season goes on."
49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans had spoken about Bosa's impressive physique in the summer and how the star edge rusher looked poised for another breakout campaign. Turns out, he was exactly right.
Bosa has been able to stay extremely healthy this season. Thanks, in part, to the private chef the 24-year-old hired that has helped him maintain a very strict diet.
"Yeah it's definitely helped," Bosa said when asked about his chef. "I just wanted to take one facet of what I do to the next level. I've got an amazing chef, Chef Anna, shout out. She'll come in two days a week and cook for almost the whole week. There's a really good fish market right near my house so she gets fresh fish from there. There's poke, ceviche, delicious fish. Chicken, steak and then the salad she makes to accompany them are top-notch."
"My DEXA scan this year was the lowest body fat on the team. When you have DBs and running backs on the team it's pretty good to be competing with them in terms of body fat. I don't know if any of that stuff helps the product on the field, but it definitely allows me to perform."
As Bosa mentioned, oftentimes the players who have the lowest body fat on the team are usually either running backs, defensive backs or wide receivers. Certainly not defensive ends.
The hard work and preparation off the field only help Bosa to perform even better on the field.
If Bosa and the 49ers take home some hardware soon -- whether that be personal or team awards -- maybe Chef Anna deserves a raise.