Among Charger circles Dan Feeney has been a very interesting argument to whether we should re-sign or let him go. I have heard people say he is a liability at this point and others saying he is better off a depth piece. In todays “let go re-sign” today we are diving deep into Dan Feeney.
I was very high on Feeney coming out of college and excited about the team selecting him. A first team all conference and a second team all state Dan Feeney committed to Indiana and became a rock on the front 5. Productive seasons like his freshman year where he did not give up a single sack. To miss his sophomore year, it was a roller coaster ride for Dan Feeney at Indiana. However when it came to preparing for the next level Dan Feeney kicked into overdrive and was considered one of the best guards in the entire draft. According to Mike Mayock he was the second best guard in the draft and with this the Los Angeles Chargers took a chance at 71st overall pick in the 3rd. However it hasn’t been smooth sailing for Dan Feeney in Los Angeles.
Dan Feeney has been consistently moved around from left guard his first couple seasons to this pass season being moved to a much more crucial role in center. Neither or which are his position he played in college. This could be the fault of coaching, in particular Anthony Lynn. Now this could be a very plausible explanation and thus the easy answer to my original question, should we let go or re-sign Dan Feeney? An easy yes he should return to see what he does. However it gets a little more complex if we look into it. Looking at Dan Feeney’s PFF grade throughout his career it’s very consistent even at his native guard position his grade hovers either just north or south of 50.0. The exception being his rookie year in which he took 665 snaps. Did coaching really affect Dan Feeney? Maybe this year but he has been played completely to the point where he’s out of his niche. However, the difference between right and left guard isn’t a tall hurdle. In my opinion coaching hasn’t really affected Dan Feeney. Backtracking to his most recent year Dan Feeney played center and he did struggle. As a center you should be able to identify coverage’s and have a plan to combat certain plays defenses throw at the offensive line. Especially with a rookie quarterback. One thing that Feeney struggled with was picking up stunts and delayed blitzes. A stunt is where a lineman switch over a shoot each others gap’s rather than the one lined up in front of them. Similar to how receivers cross in bunch formation’s in order to cross up the cornerback’s, except just with defensive lineman shooting gap’s. What is about a stunt that is difficult for Feeney? Feeney has been noted to miss a lot of simple players where it could have spared Justin Herbert a lot less hits.
Dan Feeney just being on the field is a sign of durability. Under an offensive line that saw injuries throughout the season Dan Feeney was on the field 100% of the time. Having a player not even starting but just on the bench being able to be durable and experienced is a reassuring thought to have. Another good thing about Dan Feeney is his versatility on the offensive line. Even if he’s not good at a certain position he’s able to do what is asked of him. You could certainly tie this in with him being durable as well as him becoming a good depth piece. As I mentioned earlier the Chargers offensive line has seen multiple injuries this past season and Dan Feeney could be brought back as a depth piece. Who knows, he might even play better at his natural position of right guard if given the opportunity. He knows the players around him and could be a cheap contract which we all know Tom Telesco loves. I would like to ponder the question of what if Dan Feeney is given a good offensive line around him? This could certainly be appealing for the Chargers if they want to save on guard or want Feeney to become the mentor to a new draft pick. I mean after all his best season was when he played inbetween Okung and a healthy Piuncey. Overall with a good offensive line, durability, and experience Dan Feeney could definitely see some improvement and effectiveness.
It seems like a lot of “what if’s” when speaking about how to get Feeney to live up to his potential. However if the team really is trying to dump Trai Turner to save on his 11.5 million salary then there could be an opening for Feeney to redeem himself at his natural position of right guard. I personally don’t think the center position is in his future. So if Turner does get dumped then I’m all for Feeney finally getting a chance to play right guard.