Jeff Feagles Eases Into Retirement, but Still Helps Giants

Jeff Feagles arrived at Giants training camp in Albany this week, as he had for the past seven years. The familiar fields and teammates are smoothing his career transition. Feagles is with the Giants as a punting consultant this summer, the first nfl jerseys summer since his retirement after a remarkable 22-year career.

Feagles is having no Brett Favre-like thoughts about returning — Feagles, 44, said he knows he can no longer withstand the physical rigors of a season — so instead he is working with the rookie punter Matt Dodge. Feagles’s assignment is to be with Dodge from the time he wakes up until he goes to bed, filling in the blanks on the routines and schedules, the stretches and drills Dodge needs to be a successful pro.

“I’m trying to get him to understand that every day he’s on the field he’s being evaluated,” Feagles said. “So he doesn’t just grab a bag of balls and start punting.”

Feagles is working on Dodge’s drop and footwork, and eventually Feagles will start teaching Dodge the art of the directional kick, which Feagles said took him seven years to master. Feagles might have been the last great directional kicker, but Dodge, Feagles said, is far stronger than he ever was.

“His mis-hits can still be effective because he’s so strong,” Feagles said. “He’s a little robotic nfl throwback jerseys. I’m trying to make him fluid and loose.”

And when does Feagles plan to tell Dodge about the infamous Meadowlands wind, which Feagles suspects might be even worse in the new stadium because of the open concourses?

“About two days before he goes there to kick,” Feagles said. No reason to alarm him earlier.

Dodge is not Feagles’s first pupil. Feagles’s son C. J. is a redshirt freshman at the University of North Carolina.

C J. Feagles did not start punting until his junior year at Ridgewood High School in New Jersey, when former Giants quarterback Phil Simms advised Feagles to get his son into some football camps so college coaches could see him.

Feagles had remained close to Butch Davis, North Carolina’s head coach, who had hosted Feagles on his recruiting visit to the University of Miami in the early 1980s. C. J. punted so well during a visit to Chapel Hill that Davis pulled them out of an academic meeting to offer C. J. a full scholarship on the spot, stunning Feagles.

“To be in Butch’s office with my son talking about punting was surreal,” Feagles said. “Push a button on a time machine. There aren’t too many N.F.L. nfl jersey players with college-age kids.”

Because college punters and kickers are often left on their own with little guidance, Feagles drew up a practice routine for C .J., much as he did for Dodge. For now, coaching remains a casual job for Feagles, a way to stay connected to football, leaving him plenty of time to go to C. J.’s games.

“I don’t think football will get out of my blood,” Feagles said. “I don’t think I’ll ever get over the comfort of teammates.”

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