His spin move was the thing of legend. Like a tornado it was both beautiful and terrible, consuming everything in its path. What’s more, it was so, so fast. That was the greatness of Dwight Freeney. The 11th pick in the 2002 draft, the phenom out of Syracuse ran a blazing 4.48 40-yard-dash at the combine, and when you watched him play, he looked every bit that fast.
17 years later, Freeney will be the next Indianapolis Colt to be inducted into the Colts Ring of Honor.
Honored and humbled to be inducted into the @Colts Ring of Honor. It was truly special being part of an incredible organization with amazing teammates and unbelievable fans. I loved every minute of my time there. pic.twitter.com/O0x4iHHnrW— Dwight Freeney (@dwightfreeney) May 2, 2019
From 2002-2012, Freeney terrorized quarterbacks on behalf of the Indianapolis Colts, and delighted Colts fans as a part of a tandem paired with Robert Mathis. Peyton Manning and the Colts’ prolific offense would jump out to a lead and then unleash hell on the opposing offensive line in the form of Freeney and Mathis.
During his time with the Colts, Freeney averaged 9.8 sacks per season and 3.9 forced fumbles. His presence changed offensive game plans and helped make Tony Dungy’s Tampa 2 defense as effective as it was.
Freeney was voted three times to the First-Team All-Pro team and selected to seven Pro Bowls. He was also an integral part of the defense on the Colts team that won Super Bowl XLI and appeared in two others, one for the Colts and one as a part of the Atlanta Falcons.
In total, he played in 218 career games including time with the Chargers, Cardinals, Falcons, Seahawks, and Lions. He was one of the best parts of the All or Nothing inaugural season with the Arizona Cardinals, adding leadership and a fun personality to the team and the show by extension.
Those of us who were fortunate enough to see him play won’t soon forget the impact he had on the game, on the Colts franchise, and on fans. Congratulations Dwight!