The Saints saw defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins and cornerback Delvin Breaux go down with broken legs this season and harbored hope that they would get both players back on the field this year.
That return may take place this weekend. Rankins has been practicing the last couple of weeks and is eligible to come off of injured reserve and play for the first time this week. It would be the first NFL game for Rankins, who was the Saints’ first-round pick this year.
“He’s getting around good, and we anticipate this is the week for him,” coach Sean Payton said, via the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “Just making sure he’s 100 percent and game ready.”
Breaux broke his leg in the first week of the regular season and returned to practice on Wednesday. He declared himself “115 percent ready” to play, which is a mathematical impossibility that would work well for the Saints.
Cornerback Sterling Moore and linebacker Stephone Anthony, who have missed the last two games, also got in limited practices on Wednesday, which adds to the healthier feeling on defense in New Orleans.