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Saints OLB Stephone Anthony returned to practice Monday, according to The New Orleans Advocate. That comes about a week and a half after he suffered an unspecified leg injury in the preseason opener. Anthony's return before the 3rd exhibition suggests he'll be fine for the regular season, though we'll keep an eye on his status for IDP purposes. The Saints' depth chart has Anthony starting on the strong side, with James Laurinaitis in the middle and Dannell Ellerbe manning the weak side. DC Dennis Allen doesn't have a clear enough record in the NFL for us to determine which spot presents the highest tackle ceiling in his system. And Anthony's absence has clouded the sub-package plans for the crew. We'll try to decipher that further, but Anthony's age and athleticism keeps him the most intriguing IDP option for now.

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Saints ILB Stephone Anthony left Thursday's preseason opener with a still-unspecified leg injury, but it doesn't appear to be too serious. "We were a little fearful it might be something more than it was, but I think we'll have him back sooner than later," HC Sean Payton told NOLA.com. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that a source says Anthony could miss a "couple weeks" but that he's "absolutely" expected back before the regular-season opener. We knocked him down the LB rankings just a tad for now, and we'll keep an eye on the upside 2nd-year player as Week 1 draws nearer.

Saints 1st-round pick LB Stephone Anthony worked with the 2nd team in OTAs, behind veteran ILBs David Hawthorne and Dannell Ellerbe. But he impressed his new coaches while doing so. “He’s around the ball. He certainly can be a leader. ... He has really done a good job of getting acclimated to our system quickly,” HC Sean Payton told ESPN.com. “I’d say he’s pretty mature. When you’re around him and visit with him, he's ready for the competition and opportunities. ... We’ve been encouraged with him.” That maturity will be important, because Anthony must prove he's ready to call the plays and run the D. The athleticism already makes him the top talent inside. ESPN's Mike Triplett says Anthony has already flashed his ability both in coverage and as a blitzer. We'll see how he looks with pads on, but expect Anthony to earn a starting gig and present some serious IDP upside as a rookie. Check out our 2015 IDP rankings to see how high we're willing to grab him in fantasy football drafts.

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