Pats' Terrance Knighton: No issues with weight clauses in contract

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Veteran defensive lineman Terrance Knighton said he has weight clauses in his one-year contract with the New England Patriots, adding that he is "in a lot better shape" now than he was in 2015.

"It's something I've paid a lot of attention to this offseason, and it won't be a problem," Knighton said Wednesday in his introductory conference call with Patriots reporters.

Knighton, who turns 30 on July 4, was listed at 354 pounds by the Washington Redskins last season. He declined to specify the weight at which he played in 2015.

The Patriots have put weight clauses in contracts for other players as well, most recently with veteran defensive tackle Alan Branch and sixth-year offensive tackle Marcus Cannon.

Knighton doesn't seem to have any issue with it and explained why he spent more time this offseason focused on his weight.

"Obviously when it becomes a factor in playing football, your performance on the field, it's something you have to pay attention to," he said. "I have a lot of football left, and I don't want anything to hinder me from that. I put last season behind me, and I'm happy about being in New England."

Knighton relayed that he had a long talk with Patriots nutritionist Ted Harper on his free-agent visit and that a plan is being put together for him to manage his weight. He said he hoped his time in New England will represent and "new start" and will be part of "refreshing his career."

"Last year, I was obviously heavier than I am right now. Contractually, I'll have weights that I need to hit. Whatever the coaches want me to play at, that's what I'll be," he said. "I'll continue to work throughout the offseason program and get acclimated to the new strength coaches and nutritionist and the way things are done in Foxborough. I'm looking forward to it. That's something that obviously has been an attack on me my whole career, about my weight."

Knighton's one-year contract with the Patriots has a salary-cap charge of $2.02 million.