Pittsburgh Steelers rookie outside linebacker Anthony Chickillo missed the start of the weekend minicamp due to graduation ceremonies, but he revealed Sunday that the organization didn’t want him to miss walking with his classmates and receiving his diploma.
“That just speaks about what Coach Tomlin and this organization is about,” said Chickillo, who was drafted by the Steelers with their second of two sixth-round draft picks. “They wanted me to go to graduation and spend that time with my family, so they told me to go. I wasn’t going to go to graduation, I was just going to come be here for rookie minicamp if they wanted me to.”
Chickillo, who will now attempt to transition from defensive end to outside linebacker in the Steelers 3-4 defense under the tutelage of Joey Porter, was able to attend a few of the rookie minicamp sessions and that’s better than missing all of them. He will have plenty of time to get up to speed when the OTA sessions get underway in a few weeks.
“I’m just trying to take it all in and just take all of the coaching that I can and just keep learning,” said Chickillo.
Chickillo appeared in 50 games at Miami, starting his final 47 contests. He registered 170 tackles (89 solos) with 15.5 sacks and fourteen quarterback pressures during those four seasons. Porter said after Chickillo was selected that the Miami product is a high-motor player and that now they will begin the process of figuring out where he best fits in the defense.
“It won’t be a question of how hard he will play,” said Porter of Chickillo. “I know we’re going to get an energy guy that can get to the quarterback. Finding his true position is what we’re going to be doing right now when we get him. I’ll find out how he feels standing up and what he does best. Does he like the left side or does he like the right side? I’ll find out where he’s comfortable at and we’ll play him at that.”