Kelly later explained that Tuitt had added weight because he had been unable to do certain exercises for nearly four months after the surgery.
“It wasn’t because he decided to eat Cheetos on the couch and not work out. He had to do a different work out,” Kelly said.
Kelly said earlier this month that Tuitt was still feeling the effects of the surgery, saying it had affected his back, hip flexors and “a lot of things.”
Through three games, Tuitt had just four tackles and one sack. In the next three games, he had 14 tackles and two sacks. After a week off, Tuitt had a career-high seven tackles, two sacks, a pass breakup and two quarterback hurries against USC last week and said he is finally feeling healthy.
“It was a challenge because I had to get everything back, get everything back strong again,” he said. “But right now, I’m better than ever. My game is coming all together.”
Kelly called Tuitt’s performance against USC “dominating.”
“He’s played himself into the kind of condition and shape necessary for him to exert his physical prowess on the football field,” he said.
Tuitt knows he can play better.
“When you watch the game as a person you say, ‘Oh I made plays.’ But when you go back and watch film, and I look at the plays I could have made, and probably made more, those are things I look at,” he said.
Tuitt is a lot more comfortable talking about defending the option than discussing his options of staying in school or entering the NFL draft. Tuitt caused a stir last week when he told the Notre Dame student newspaper that he planned to return for his senior season
Tuitt said he misspoke, saying he answered without thinking about what he was saying. He said he hasn’t decided what he will do next season.
“It’s something I have to talk about with coach Kelly and my mom. It’s something I pray about,” he said. “Right now I’m focused on every week.”
This week he’s focused on being Louis Nix.