Stephone Anthony will return 'sooner than later'

by - Assoc. Editor -
Derick Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Former Clemson linebacker Stephone Anthony was injured in the second quarter of last Thursday's NFL preseason game against the New England Patriots.

Anthony was hit hard on a block by New England Patriots tight end Clay Harbor and then placed on a cart to the locker room. The Saints were mum on his injury status after the game.

However, head coach Sean Payton told reporters on Saturday that the leg injury is not as severe as first thought.

"We were a little fearful it might be something more than it was, but I think we'll have him back sooner than later," Payton said via

Anthony was not on the field at Saints' practice on Saturday.

He was projected to be the Saints' strongside linebacker this season after leading the Saints in tackles with 112 tackles and also forced two fumbles, a sack and had an interception and was named to the Professional Football Writers Association All-Rookie team for 2015.

He started all 16 games last season and was the first Saints' rookie to reach 100 tackles since Ricky Jackson in 1981. He also made NFL history with being the first player ever to return a blocked extra point for two points.

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