Freeney with the Indianapolis Colts in 2010
|No. 93, 54|
|Date of birth:February 19, 1980|
|Place of birth: Hartford, Connecticut|
|NFL Draft: 2002 / Round: 1 / Pick: 11|
|No regular season or postseason appearances|
|* Indianapolis Colts ( 2002– 2012)|
|Career highlights and awards|
|* Super Bowl champion (XLI)|
|Stats at NFL.com|
|Stats at pro-football-reference.com|
Dwight Jason Freeney (born February 19, 1980) is a former American football defensive end who played 16 seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Syracuse, where he earned unanimous All-American honors, and was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the first round of the 2002 NFL Draft. With the Colts, Freeney won Super Bowl XLI over the Chicago Bears, and made seven Pro Bowls. He also played for the San Diego Chargers, Arizona Cardinals, Atlanta Falcons, Seattle Seahawks and Detroit Lions.
Early years[edit | edit source]
Freeney was born in Hartford, Connecticut. He attended Bloomfield High School in Bloomfield, Connecticut. Freeney was a four-sport letterman, earning four letters in baseball in which he was coached by Alphonso Ford; four in basketball; three in football, in which he played both ways; and one in soccer, in which he played goalie in his freshman year before switching over to football. Freeney holds the record for sacks at his high school and used to hold the record for most sacks in a high school career in the Connecticut record book. (Record now held by Mark Evanchick of Darien HS) Bloomfield High retired his No. 44 football jersey. During his youth, Freeney idolized New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor.
College career[edit | edit source]
Freeney received an athletic scholarship to attend Syracuse University, where he played for the Syracuse Orange football team from 1998 to 2001. A two-year starter for the Orangemen, he set a school record with 17.5 sacks in his senior season and his 34 career sacks rank second in school history to Tim Green (45.5). Freeney was the school's premier pass rusher, and once had a string of 17 consecutive games with at least one sack. Against Virginia Tech, Freeney sacked elusive Hokies quarterback Michael Vick 4.5 times in one game.
Freeney finished his college career with 104 tackles (68 unassisted), 34 quarterback sacks, 51 tackles for a loss, and 43 quarterback pressures. He was a first-team All-Big East Conference selection in 2000 and 2001, and was recognized as a unanimous first-team All-American following his senior season in 2001.
While attending Syracuse at a then 255-pounds, Freeney was clocked at 4.40 second 40-yard dash and recorded 40-inch vertical jump. His 40-yard time remains among the fastest ever recorded for a defensive lineman.
Freeney still returns to Syracuse for his summer workouts, and serves as mentor to Syracuse players, including former walk-on Josh Arrington from the 2006–2008 season.
Professional career[edit | edit source]
2002 NFL Combine[edit | edit source]
|Ht||Wt||40-yd dash||10-yd split||20-yd split||20-ss||3-cone||Vert||Broad||BP||Wonderlic|
|6 ft 1 in||266 lb||4.48 s||40 in||28 rep|
Indianapolis Colts[edit | edit source]
Freeney was selected by the Indianapolis Colts with the 11th selection in the 2002 NFL Draft. He set an NFL rookie record in 2002 with 9 forced fumbles, three of which occurred in a single game against former Syracuse football player, Donovan McNabb. Freeney was the runner up for the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year award.
When drafted by Indianapolis at 270 lbs, Freeney was clocked at 4.48 seconds in the 40-yard dash and the same 40 inch vertical jump.
In 2004, Freeney's third season, he led the NFL with 16 sacks. At the end of his third season, Freeney's season marked him as the 3rd fastest player to achieve 40 sacks. He developed a spin move which became his trademark pass rush move.
On February 19, 2007, the Colts placed the franchise tag on Freeney following the expiration of his rookie contract. This move allowed Bill Polian and the Colts front office time to work on a long term contract. On July 13, 2007 Freeney signed a six-year, $72 million contract with $30 million in guarantees making Freeney one of the highest paid defensive players in the NFL.
Freeney was fined $20,000 by the NFL for his expletive-laced interview following the end of the Colts 2008–09 playoff campaign which ended with a 23-17 overtime playoff loss to the San Diego Chargers. The NFL cited Freeney for making "inappropriate comments on officiating," according to the Indianapolis Star. Freeney, frustrated by the three defensive penalties incurred as the Chargers made their game-winning drive, told Yahoo! Sports after the game: "Those were the worst [expletive] calls I've seen in a long time ... To have a game of that magnitude taken out of your hands, it's just disgusting. It's not like they made one [expletive] bad call -- it's three calls, in overtime ... They need to start investigating some other [expletive]."
In 2012, Freeney converted from defensive end to outside linebacker under new head coach Chuck Pagano. Due to injury and not adjusting to his position-change well, Freeney struggled and finished the season with only five sacks and 12 tackles.
On February 15, 2013, Freeney was told he would not be re-signed by the Colts. Freeney left as the all-time franchise leader in sacks with 107.5, eventually being surpassed by former teammate Robert Mathis the next season. Mathis would also break Freeney's franchise record of 16 sacks in a season the following season, too, when he tallied 19.5.
San Diego Chargers[edit | edit source]
In 2014, Freeney looked to bounce back from the previous year and did. Throughout the season, Freeney was only used as a pass rush specialist coming out only on passing downs. Against the Seattle Seahawks Freeney sacked Russell Wilson, which contributed to a Chargers victory. The next week, Freeney got a sack against the Buffalo Bills. Against the 49ers, Dwight Freeney and Ricardo Mathews sacked and forced a Colin Kaepernick fumble leading to a Chargers touchdown. The next week recorded one sack against Chase Daniel and the Chiefs. Freeney finished the season with 10 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and a pass deflect.
Arizona Cardinals[edit | edit source]
On October 12, 2015, Freeney signed a one-year, $870,000 deal with the Arizona Cardinals, with the incentive to receive a $200,000 bonus with four sacks and then would receive $100,000 for each sack thereafter, with a maximum of 12.
Freeney was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week 16, in which he had three sacks and a forced fumble, the first time he had three sacks in a game since 2006. Coincidentally, former Colts teammate Robert Mathis won AFC Defensive Player of the Week for the same week. Freeney appeared in nine games during the 2015 season, totaling 8.0 sacks (leading the team) and three forced fumbles.
Atlanta Falcons[edit | edit source]
On August 2, 2016, Freeney signed a one-year deal with the Atlanta Falcons. He played in 15 games, totaling three sacks. The Falcons won the NFC Championship to advance to Super Bowl LI, bringing Freeney to his third career Super Bowl. Freeney had one sack in the big game, although the Falcons lost to the Patriots by a score of 34–28.
Seattle Seahawks[edit | edit source]
Detroit Lions[edit | edit source]
Retirement[edit | edit source]
Freeney announced his retirement on April 19, 2018, after signing a ceremonial one day contract with the Colts to retire as a member of the team he spent the majority of his career with.
Career statistics[edit | edit source]
|Year||Team||GP||COMB||TOTAL||AST||SACK||FF||FR||FR YDS||TD||INT||IR YDS||AVG IR||LNG||TD||PD|
Personal life[edit | edit source]
On March 28, 2012, his financial advisor was arrested and charged with embezzling $2.2 million from Freeney. In 2015, Freeney sued Bank of America for $20 million claiming he trusted the bank's wealth management division with the assets.
References[edit | edit source]
- http://www.blmfld.org/page.cfm?p=3379[dead link]
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- "Dwight Freeney: The Official Website of the Indianapolis Colts". Colts.com. Archived from the original on May 21, 2005. https://web.archive.org/web/20050521074833/http://www.colts.com/sub.cfm?page=bio&player_id=121.
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- 2011 NCAA Football Records Book, Award Winners, National Collegiate Athletic Association, Indianapolis, Indiana, p. 11 (2011). Retrieved June 24, 2012.
- "Fastest 40 Yard Dash - Freelap USA" (in en-US). September 20, 2014. https://www.freelapusa.com/fastest-40-yard-dash/.
- Rahme, Dave. "Syracuse University football team gets strength and conditioning blast from the past" (in en-US). syracuse.com. http://blog.syracuse.com/orangefootball/2009/08/syracuse_university_football_t_8.html.
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- Freeman, Mike (April 14, 2002). "PRO FOOTBALL: INSIDE THE N.F.L.; Draft Mavens Are Buzzing About Freeney" (in en-US). The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. https://www.nytimes.com/2002/04/14/sports/pro-football-inside-the-nfl-draft-mavens-are-buzzing-about-freeney.html.
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- Crumpacker, John (October 31, 2009). "Smallish pass-rush duo creates big problems". San Francisco Chronicle. http://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Smallish-pass-rush-duo-creates-big-problems-3213079.php. Retrieved October 31, 2009.
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- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on February 21, 2007. https://web.archive.org/web/20070221210739/http://www.nfl.com/teams/story/IND/10007910. Retrieved February 19, 2007.
- "ESPN - Freeney's deal cap friendly for 2007, 2008 - NFL". http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2944823. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- "NFL fines Indianapolis Colts' Dwight Freeney $20,000 for inappropriate comments". http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs2008/news/story?id=3823511. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- "Dwight Freeney - Detroit Lions - 2017 Player Profile". http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/1517/dwight-freeney. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- Freeney: I'm not like LeBron trying to leave the team-Pro Football Talk Retrieved August 24, 2012.
- "Dwight Freeney 2012 Game Log" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/F/FreeDw00/gamelog/2012/.
- "Report: Colts release Dwight Freeney, Austin Collie". SI.com. February 15, 2013. Archived from the original on February 17, 2013. https://web.archive.org/web/20130217150200/http://tracking.si.com/2013/02/15/colts-release-dwight-freeney-austin-collie/. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
- Alper, Josh (February 15, 2013). "Report: Colts won’t re-sign Dwight Freeney, Austin Collie". NBCSports.com. http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/02/15/report-colts-wont-re-sign-dwight-freeney-austin-collie/. Retrieved February 16, 2013.
- "Dwight Freeney, San Diego Chargers agree on contract". http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000204165/article/dwight-freeney-san-diego-chargers-agree-to-contract. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- "Dwight Freeney 2013 Game Log" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/F/FreeDw00/gamelog/2013/.
- "Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers - September 14th, 2014" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201409140sdg.htm.
- "San Diego Chargers at Buffalo Bills - September 21st, 2014" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201409210buf.htm.
- "San Diego Chargers at San Francisco 49ers - December 20th, 2014" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201412200sfo.htm.
- "San Diego Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs - December 28th, 2014" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201412280kan.htm.
- "Arizona Cardinals add pass-rusher Dwight Freeney". http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/13871647/arizona-cardinals-add-pass-rusher-dwight-freeney. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- "Green Bay Packers at Arizona Cardinals - December 27th, 2015" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201512270crd.htm.
- "Dwight Freeney Earns NFC Honor". http://m.azcardinals.com/news-and-events/article-2/Dwight-Freeney-Earns-NFC-Honor/0f1905ef-5a61-4e61-a870-136ab0a2008f. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
- "Dwight Freeney 2015 Game Log" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/F/FreeDw00/gamelog/2015/.
- "Falcons agree to terms with DE Dwight Freeney". AtlantaFalcons.com. August 2, 2016. http://www.atlantafalcons.com/news/blog/article-1/Falcons-Agree-to-Terms-With-DE-Dwight-Freeney/15435dcd-65a6-4772-990f-7b42a8be936b. Retrieved August 2, 2016.
- "Dwight Freeney 2016 Game Log" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/F/FreeDw00/gamelog/2016/.
- "2016 Atlanta Falcons Statistics & Players". Pro-Football-Reference.com. https://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/atl/2016.htm. Retrieved August 6, 2017.
- "Super Bowl LI Box Score". pro-football-reference.com. February 6, 2017. https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201702050atl.htm#player_defense::6. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
- Chadiha, Jeffri. "Falcons' historic collapse leads to Patriots' fifth Super Bowl win". NFL. http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000783872/article/falcons-historic-collapse-leads-to-patriots-fifth-super-bowl-win. Retrieved August 6, 2017.
- Boyle, John (October 24, 2017). "Seahawks Agree To Terms With Pro Bowl DE Dwight Freeney". http://www.seahawks.com/news/2017/10/24/seahawks-agree-terms-pro-bowl-de-dwight-freeney.
- Boyle, John (November 21, 2017). "Seahawks Waive Defensive End Dwight Freeney". Archived from the original on February 2, 2018. https://web.archive.org/web/20180202015338/http://www.seahawks.com/news/2017/11/21/seahawks-waive-defensive-end-dwight-freeney.
- "Lions awarded DE Dwight Freeney via waivers from Seattle". November 22, 2017. https://www.detroitlions.com/news/lions-awarded-de-dwight-freeney-via-waivers-from-seattle-19824292.
- Walker, Andrew (April 19, 2018). "Dwight Freeney Calling It A Career; Will Retire As A Colt". http://www.colts.com/news/article-1/Dwight-Freeney-Calling-It-A-Career-Will-Retire-As-A-Colt/5abba383-6f99-4187-8e62-397b88500e95.
- "Dwight Freeney". ESPN Internet Ventures. http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/stats/_/id/3539/dwight-freeney. Retrieved January 14, 2014.
- "Lovers Swindle NFL All-Pro". Huffington Post. March 28, 2012. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/28/dwight-freeney-advisors-charged-fraud-federal_n_1386936.html.
- Gantt, Darin. "Dwight Freeney suing Bank of America for $20 million". NBC Sports. http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/04/01/dwight-freeney-suing-bank-of-america-for-20-million/. Retrieved April 1, 2015.
[edit | edit source]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Dwight Freeney.|
- Dwight Freeney at ESPN.com
- Dwight Freeney at Pro-Football-Reference.com
- Indianapolis Colts bio
- San Diego Chargers bio
- Syracuse Orange bio