ANDERSON –From a physicality standpoint, Colts linebacker Pat Angerer is a stout package.
The Colts' leading returning tackler has started 27 of 32 career games and has been a mainstay in the linebacker corps each of the last two seasons.
Angerer, 6-0, 236, enters his third season with the Colts and although the three-year veteran has a little wear on his frame, his mindset heading into camp dates back to his rookie season.
"Not really, my body doesn't," Angerer said about if he feels like a rookie. "With the excitement level kind of like a rookie (though). (I'm) looking forward to it, starting over."
After starting all 16 games for the Colts last season, Angerer headed into his first 'real' NFL off-season.
Due to the lockout in 2011 there were no off-season activities for players so the Iowa product feels as though he just finished his first set of OTAs.
"They really were like the first OTAs I've ever done," said Angerer. "My rookie year I didn't really know what was going on and the next year we had the lockout.
"It helped me out a lot. I think it really built our team cohesion quite a bit. We are definitely a lot tighter than we were and looking forward to growing."
Angerer is expected to be a key cog in the middle of the Colts' 3-4 defense in 2012, and he will be joined by some new faces around him as former defensive ends Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis join him in the unit.
The switch from defensive end to linebacker for the Pro Bowl tandem has received much of the attention during the off-season and even the "youthful" Angerer knows that times like these can help ease those transitions in the fall.
"This and OTAs are the most important parts of the season," Angerer said. "This is where you win games and become a great team."
Angerer hopes to keep up the productivity that has marked his career. He started 11 times as a rookie in 2010, totaling 75 tackles. He was the team's leading tackler last year with 146 stops, a total that ranked fourth in the league. He had a career-high 20 stops against Pittsburgh last season.