Will Henry Anderson Make His 2016 Debut This Sunday?

Intro: As the Colts begin to get much healthier on the defensive side of the ball, that unit could be receiving the services of Henry Anderson back in Week Three.

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INDIANAPOLIS – Is this Sunday when we see the return of the other season-ending injury from last year's Denver game?

Andrew Luck, rightfully so, stole the headlines with his injury from that November contest last season against the Broncos.

But on that same afternoon, the Colts lost Henry Anderson, arguably their best defender from 2015.

A 300-pound man rehabbing an ACL in less than a year is no easy task.

But here's Anderson, in his fifth straight week of practice, believing Sunday could finally be the light at the end of the tunnel.

"Coach's call at the end of the day," Anderson said with a smile this week when pressed about making his 2016 debut on Sunday.

"I'll practice this week, see where it feels, then we'll make the call closer to the game. But everything has responded really well and I haven't had any setbacks from practicing."

Earlier this week, Chuck Pagano said the Colts would continue to increase the practice activity for Anderson and that he could be available to play against San Diego.

Anderson has been listed as a "full" participant in the last two practices.

"The last hurdle would really be playing in the game where bodies are falling around and I'm not totally safe," Anderson says. "Practice, we're usually pretty good at keeping guys up.

"One of the big things I wanted was to get pads on and hit and take on double teams and stuff like that and it's responded really well to all that stuff."

Through the first part of 2015, Anderson ranked right up with any 3-4 defensive end in solo tackles.

Defensive Rookie of the Year talk including Anderson was not hyperbole.

That halted on Nov. 9, 2015, when Kendall Langford was blocked into Anderson.

It was another year of ACL rehab for Anderson, something the 2015 third-round pick experienced back in high school.

As Anderson has eased back into practice since late August, it's not hard to notice the long-limbed defensive end.

"He looks quicker off the ball," GM Ryan Grigson said of Anderson a few weeks ago. "His pass rush looks, I don't know, it looks more developed.

"He just seems like before he was more of a run-stuffing kind of stout guy that could just push the pocket — he looks more like an NFL guy on third down now, just the way he's moving around. Which is really encouraging coming off the knee (injury) that he did."

Is it time to release what's been seen behind closed doors on the practice field to 60,000 at Lucas Oil Stadium?

Anderson hopes so.

"It kind of feels like a redshirt year back in college where you're practicing all week and you just go and watch the game," Anderson says of practicing the past month without any game action.

"Hopefully things keep progressing. I feel close, so we'll see."

A behind the scenes look at Henry's 2016 photo shoot in the #ColtsPhotoGarage

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