Anthony Chickillo   DL   Miami


Anthony has the talent to play at the next level and he showed that at the combine. He has the speed, size and strength to be as good as any defensive lineman in this draft. He has a strong burst off the line and is stout against the run. His body type, talent and effort remind me a lot of Patriots’ Rob Ninkovich who was originally drafted in the 5th round by the New Orleans Saints in the 2006 draft. Anthony has the same “I want to be the best” attitude and the football intelligence. He shows on film enough change of direction skills to finish plays along with the balance and lateral agility to be used for stunts on defensive line play. Anthony has the athletic talent, but still has enormous potential to improve in every facet of his game and that, to me, is what makes him so appealing. If a team has the time to let Anthony grow football wise, I think the rewards in his play and impact could be the same as Rob Ninkovich has been for the Patriots. Anthony can become a core player for your defense and a fan favorite.

There is so much improving that Anthony has to do, it’s definitely concerning. However, the biggest issue is he has to overcome is to stop trying to be the “good guy” on the field. He has to get a more “me first” attitude. He has to improve his pad level off the line of scrimmage, continue fighting once he is engaged and stop taking his man out of the play so that others can make plays. He plays with a nose tackle’s mentality, which is hurting him on the field because he has too much talent just to be a guy who just takes up space. Anthony has to start thinking that HE can be an impact player. That’s his biggest problem along with the lack of techniques that most players have who have played in as many games as Anthony has.

I’m sure his teammates love Anthony in the locker room, but out on the field, this overzealous teammate mentality is going to run him right out of the NFL. There is no reason why a player with Anthony’s athletic talent and effort is not considered one of the top players in this draft. The only explanation is that Anthony is not producing on the field. The kid is a three year starter and what does he have to show for it – just being a great guy in the locker room? The truth is the only reason Anthony will get drafted is because he showed up at the combine and put up some pretty good numbers. I’m sure his coaches and teammates will talk very highly of him, but I can tell you this: going by film, all I see is a player who worries about making his teammates look good and not coming off the line the way his talents show he can as well as not finishing plays. What I want to say to Anthony is this – if you want to play like Rob Ninkovich, I suggest you start learning the same techniques Rob uses and start making plays like he does. It might take a few years, but if you work hard, you can be just as good. If you don’t change your attitude and start making plays, you are destined to become just a “hanger on” type of player. I think Anthony has good development talents and effort and I would take a chance on him in the 4th round, but it would all depend on his interview and questioning him on his play on the field from tape. Truthfully right now I only see a practice squad player very much like Rob Ninkovich was for the first few years of his NFL career. But, you never know, sometimes the light comes on and a player will play better at the next level than he ever did at the college level.

Drew Boylhart