SAN DIEGO -- Dwight Freeney says he didn't need playing time in the preseason to know that he's fully healthy and ready to play at a level he's accustomed to after tearing a quad last season.
The light bulb came on for Freeney after beating offensive tackle King Dunlap around the edge during one-on-one pass rush drills the first week of training camp.
"I knew once I got out there and engaged an offensive tackle, cut one way and I cut the other way and I wasn't thinking about the knee -- I knew I was good," Freeney said.
But San Diego Chargers head coach Mike McCoy wanted to see Freeney in game action to just to make sure, and the 34-year-old veteran obliged, playing seven snaps and finishing with a tackle for a loss against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday -- a 2-yard loss for San Francisco running back LaMichael James.
"For me, I already knew that I'd be OK," Freeney said. "But it's just part of the process. They want to see you out there, and make sure you don't have any butterflies, or knock off the rust, or cobwebs or whatever. It's just part of the process."
After playing in his first preseason action, Freeney likely will not see any time against the Arizona Cardinals in his team's final preseason game. The Chargers have the unusual circumstance of playing the Cardinals again in the regular-season opener, so Freeney will be rooting his teammates on who are fighting for roster spots.
He doesn't expect either team to show too much on Thursday.
"I'm sure they're not going to show us anything, and we're not going to show them anything," Freeney said. "Well, you have to show something, because you have to go out there and actually play. But it's going to be interesting to see how vanilla the game can possibly get."