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Troy Andersen anticipating 'healthy, successful' third year with Atlanta Falcons

Posted at 11:42 AM, Jun 28, 2024

DILLON — Troy Andersen was on a tear in the Atlanta Falcons' road game against the Detroit Lions last September.

The second-year NFL linebacker had piled up nine total tackles in the Week 3 contest after sitting out the second week while in concussion protocol.

Then while making a tackle in the fourth quarter, something went awry.

"It's a freak deal," the former Dillon Beaver and Montana State Bobcat said on Wednesday after running his second youth football camp at his high school home field Vigilante Stadium. "Tear a (pectoral muscle) making a tackle. It sucks. Get surgery and start the rehab process."

A promising sophomore campaign — Andersen racked up 19 total tackles through two games played — was hampered by that shoulder/pectoral injury and Andersen wouldn't be cleared to return until Week 18. But the one silver lining he found amid the disappointment was knowing that this setback happened early enough that he could focus on being at 100% in time for the start of his third season.

"Unfortunate it happened early but luckily it happened early enough that I'm good to go for this year," he said. "I'm looking forward to a healthy, successful year.

"I'm excited to get back out there, and our team, as well. Strong offseason moves and we're poised to have some fun this year."

The Falcons open their preseason at Miami on Aug. 9.

Andersen also noted that he followed along this past year as the Beavers replicated what he and Dillon did his senior season back in 2016-17 — claim the Class A football and basketball championships.

"That was super fun to watch," said Andersen. "Shoot (graduated Dillon quarterback) Kee Christiansen a text before or after the game. (Dillon head football coach Zach) McRae, he's awesome. What they've continued with the program and take it to new heights, it's awesome."

McRae was an assistant under Rick Nordahl when Andersen was in high school and has watched him grow from a high school star to a professional player.

"Troy's such a humble guy, we're so proud of him," said McRae. "I think that he's first class, that he does it the right way. He obviously has some pretty special athletic skills but he's an all-star person."

Andersen's football journey has taken him places he could only dream of when he was a kid. But as he looked around his old stomping grounds in Dillon, he noted that this place will always be meaningful to him.

"Friday Night Lights. High school football in Montana is hard to beat," said Andersen. "We were pretty fortunate to be good when I was here and they've kept it rolling with McRae and the guys, so it's fun to follow them."