Another hit to Colts’ draft class: Henry Anderson lost for season

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Henry Anderson

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Nov. 9, 2015) – Henry Anderson’s season-ending knee injury is the latest setback for the Indianapolis Colts 2015 draft class.

The third-round pick had established himself as a cornerstone on the defensive line. But Anderson’s season ended in the third quarter of Sunday’s 27-24 win over Denver when he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. He was placed on the season-ending injured reserve list Monday and will undergo surgery in the next few weeks.

“Hate to lose anybody,” said Coach Chuck Pagano. “That one hurt. He was playing really good football for us.”

Anderson started all nine games at tackle and piled up 35 tackles, most among the linemen. He also had one sack, five tackles for loss and four quarterback hits.

“I’m sad for him,” veteran linebacker Robert Mathis said. “The man works hard and he’s a professional. It’s rare that you find young guys like that, rookies as polished and professional as he is.

“You hate to see that happen, but I know he’ll bounce back. The guys behind him have big shoes to fill.”

Anderson’s injury is the latest to afflict the Colts’ top three draft picks.

Wide receiver Phillip Dorsett, the 29th overall pick, underwent a procedure late last month to repair a fractured left fibula, an injured sustained Oct. 25 against New Orleans. The initial prognosis had him missing up to five weeks.

Cornerback D’Joun Smith, another third-round pick, was placed on IR/designated for return after suffering a knee injury in the season opener at Buffalo. He has returned to practice and is eligible to play Nov. 22 when the Colts return to action at Atlanta.

Talib suspended: Denver cornerback Aqib Talib has been suspended one game by the NFL for poking Colts tight end Dwayne Allen in the eye late in Sunday’s game. He is appealing.

If the suspension stands, Talib will miss Sunday’s game against Kansas City and forfeit one game check, or $323,529.

The suspension was levied by Merton Hanks, the league’s vice president of football operations. Talib, according to the NFL, violated its safety-related playing rules for “forcefully poking an opponent in the eye after the conclusion of a play.”

Allen was face-to-face and in a heated exchange with Broncos linebacker Von Miller when Talib approached and thrust his fingers through Allen’s face mask and into his left eye. Talib was penalized for unnecessary roughness. He later was penalized again for unsportsmanlike conduct for arguing with an official.

Pagano praised Allen and other Colts for not retaliating against Talib.

“Really proud of the way our guys responded and handled the situation,’’ he said. “They held their composure.”

Allen said he experienced some blurred vision as he exited Lucas Oil Stadium Sunday night, but says it’s fine now.

“I play to the echo of the whistle and the whistle had blown,” he said. “I wasn’t going to retaliate.”

After the game, Allen described Talib’s action as a “cheap shot.”

Talib’s account was markedly different. It was one the NFL didn’t buy.

“From my angle, I see (Allen) head butt Von a little bit,” he said after the game. “I went over to poke his head and I think my hand slipped and hit his face.

“He acted like he got in an 18-passenger car wreck. I guess that’s what type of guy he is.”

This and that: Pagano was unable to provide an update on safety Mike Adams, who was forced from Sunday’s game in the second quarter with an injury to his left ankle.

Along with placing Anderson on IR, the team waived cornerback Tony Carter, which opens up two roster spots. One likely is reserved for the return of Smith.

Quote of the year? Pagano was asked to assess the play of running back Ahmad Bradshaw. Along with contributing to the win over Denver with an 8-yard touchdown catch, he offered solid protection for quarterback Andrew Luck. On one play, Bradshaw went low and cut down blitzing linebacker Brandon Marshall.

“He’s a tough son of a bitch,’’ Pagano said.

You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51