Colts NT Josh Chapman ready to play after missing rookie season

Joe Robbins

Chapman is happy to be back on the field after being forced to sit out his rookie year because of a knee injury.

Colts defensive lineman Josh Chapman is getting ready for his second year as a pro, but he has yet to play a down for Indianapolis. That's because of a serious knee injury he suffered in October of 2011 while still in college. He was selected in the fifth round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Colts despite that setback, and while it looked for a brief time that he might be able to join the active roster last season, the team ultimately decided to keep him sidelined.

Now he's healthy, participating in OTAs and ready to contribute to the Colts' 3-4 defense.

"It has been a long time coming. I haven't been away from the game this long ever in my life," Chapman told recently. "It's an anxious kind of feeling. Just being able to put the pads on again and feel that extra thump is good."

Chapman actually played through the knee injury -- a torn ACL and meniscus -- for a significant portion of his senior season, helping the Alabama Crimson Tide win a national championship but also pushing back his recovery. It was determined at the time that he could do no further damage to the knee by playing with the injury.

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