FILE - In this Aug. 5, 2016, file photo, Atlanta Falcons strong safety Keanu Neal (22) is shown during their annual Friday Night Lights NFL football practice at Grayson High School, in Loganville, Ga. Free-agent signee Dwight Freeney and rookie safety Keanu Neal are expected to make their preseason debuts for the Falcons on Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016, at Cleveland, bringing Atlanta’s defense closer to its projected regular-season status. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Photo: John Bazemore
Photo: John Bazemore

Freeney recovered from grade two quad tear

“I’m feeling good,” Freeney said. “My body has recovered. That time off was crucial for me. I had that grade two quad tear a week after the San Diego week, which pretty much limited me physically for the last three weeks.”

It had to be painful to play with the injury.

Here’s what says about the injury: “…The athlete may feel a sudden sharp pain when running, jumping or kicking and be unable to play on. Pain will making walking difficult and swelling or mild bruising would be noticed. Pain would be felt when pressing in on the suspected location of the quad muscle tear. Straightening the knee against resistance is likely to cause pain and the injured athlete will be unable to fully bend the knee.”

Freeney helped to revived the Falcons’ pass rush early in the season with his hurries and sacks. When his health started to slip, Vic Beasley started to emerge as pass rusher and has 9.5 sacks.

Freeney hopes to get back going down the stretch now that he’s healthy.

“I’m feeling a lot better right now,” Freeney said. “That rest was absolutely crucial for me and hopefully, I can get back to playing the way I would like to play.”

Falcons played against the Eagles after not playing in the short week Thursday night game against Tampa Bay.

Freeney’s pass-rush production tailed off in recent weeks. He had just five quarterback pressures in his past three games after he had 18 in weeks 3-5, according to Pro Football Focus.

“It will be great to go out there and play ball the way I know that I can,” Freeney said. “Feeling the way that I know I can is absolutely crucial.’

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