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Vic Beasley looking for ex-teammate Dwight Freeney's jersey


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FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- Atlanta Falcons pass-rusher Vic Beasley, the reigning NFL sack champ, was giddy like a kid when talking about the possibility of swapping jerseys with former teammate Dwight Freeney, now with the Seattle Seahawks.

The 25-year-old Beasley appreciates how the 37-year-old Freeney took him under his wing during Freeney's one season with the Falcons a year ago.

"It's going to be great to see Freeney," Beasley said of Monday night's Falcons-Seahawks matchup. "I look forward to that. Hopefully I'll be able to exchange jerseys with him, if other guys haven't made those plans already."

Freeney told ESPN's Jim Trotter he'll certainly swap jerseys with Beasley as part of the popular postgame ritual. "I'm definitely honored," Freeney said. "We've been through a lot over the last year. And I wish him nothing but success in his career."

Freeney, a seven-time Pro Bowl selection, stands 17th on the all-time sacks list with 125.5 in 16 NFL seasons. The likely future Hall of Famer, known for his signature spin move, joined the Seahawks on Oct. 25 after Cliff Avril went down with a neck/spine injury.

Freeney, who has three sacks in just three games with the Seahawks, had three sacks and 10 quarterback hits in 15 games with the Falcons last season. His value extended beyond numbers, however, as he helped open opportunities for Beasley's league-leading 15.5 sacks. Freeney also was a strong mentor for Beasley and the other young Falcons.

Beasley explained why it was so important for him to get Freeney's jersey. "Shoot, man, because he poured so much into our room," Beasley said. "I want to have that memorabilia to remember him whenever he's done playing. ... How to rush as a whole, I think that's the biggest thing I took from him."

Falcons coach Dan Quinn said leading up to the game the team strongly considered bringing Freeney back. Quinn and general manager Thomas Dimitroff had discussions about it, and Freeney made clear to Quinn he intended to make a comeback. But the Falcons' first priority was to continue the development of young pass-rushers such as first-round draft pick Takk McKinley. And the Falcons had more pressing needs on the interior of the defensive line and at linebacker due to injury.

Another factor was the presence of veteran right defensive end Adrian Clayborn, who set a franchise record with six sacks last week against Dallas. He has been arguably the Falcons' most consistent pass-rusher all season.

Clayborn leads the Falcons with eight sacks, while Beasley and Brooks Reedeach have four. Clayborn also leads the team with 11 quarterback hits, followed by Reed with six and McKinley with five.

The Falcons, with 26 sacks, rank eighth in the league in sacks per pass attempt at a 8.55 percent rate.


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I will probably get flamed all over this site for saying this. But look : "How do you know that Freeney coached Beasley up? Show me some proof other than Beasley making his own plays". 

Just because Beasley said "Thanks", that just means he was being nice to an old timer who give him advice. It doesn't mean that he TAUGHT Beasley HOW TO PLAY. 

Although, LOOK : That being said, a couple sacks in that last game that were made by Clayborne, It looked like he used the spin move, so perhaps my entire point is that maybe Freeney deserves more credit than just one player on the Falcons rushing the passer team goes. 

I have never liked this Coach goes to another team and they make trades and such, like when Mike Smith was the coach for the Falcons and it seemed like the Falcons became the Atlanta Faguars or a mix of players from both teams. The fact that Quinn has kept his connection as player's go is a good thing. He's being his own man and not milking players from his former team. I like that. And yeah there may be one or two. 

Either way, I like Freeney, and I hope he does good, but just NOT AGAINTS THE FALCONS!!!!!!!!!! 

And Beasley as far as mentoring, a few games not getting the job done and the fear of losing it for not doing the job does more mentoring than anything Freeney could have ever done. You need to apply yourself when given the opportunity that you dream of, and there is no perfect path to finding it, that goes for the NFL and LIFE and careers. 

Just my thoughts. Flame away!


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