The following is the latest installment of Getting To Know, a chance to learn a little more about Steelers’ players who were added to the roster over the last few years.
Position: Tight End
Years Pro: Rookie
How Acquired: Seventh-round draft pick in 2014.
Football Mentor/Inspiration: Growing up I always looked at Mark Bavaro. He is a Massachusetts guy, a tough blue collar type of player. Coming in here there is no one better to look after you than
Proudest Football Moment/Memory: I think senior day, being able to walk out onto the field with my grandparents, mom and dad and sisters. That was a pretty cool experience. I also set the all time receiving record for tight ends at UMass that day and it was cool to share that with them.
Favorite Teammate: That is a tough one. I would have to say my buddy Andrew Dugan from high school. He is in school right now to be an Army Ranger and we still communicate. He has been pushing through that for almost a year now. He is the biggest Pittsburgh Steelers fan I know. He gave up his five minutes he gets on the phone to talk to me on Draft Day instead of his wife. He is one of my best friends, captain senior year and a tough guy. We push each other through hard times.
Initial NFL Attraction: When I was 12 years old I started playing Pop Warner because I wanted to go to the NFL. That is the goal I set for myself at a young age and luckily it all worked out. It’s the highest level of competition. Proving to myself and everyone else I had the ability to compete at the highest level.
Football Mindset: Aggressive, attacking wherever I can, point of attack on run game, catching the ball and attacking someone with my shoulder pads. That aggressive approach is why I think I am here.
Impression of Pittsburgh: I love it. It reminds me of home. Central Massachusetts is similar in that there is industry, blue collar towns. When I first came here I saw the city surround me. I like it. It’s a great town, great fan base and more Super Bowl trophies than any city. It’s an honor to be here and I am really enjoying it.
Perception of Steelers: I think of tough, downhill running game in the snow in the playoffs on the way to the Super Bowl. Growing up in New England every year you dread playing the Steelers because they are the toughest team to go against. There has always been nothing but respect there. Now that I am part of the organization it’s even better because I get to see it, live it and fully understand how hard it is to succeed here and what it takes.
Goals/Aspirations for 2014: I want to make the team and have an opportunity to play on Sundays.
Career Goals: I want to win a Super Bowl. I never had an opportunity to win any type of championship in college. There is a chip on my shoulder because of that. There is no better organization to be a part of to get a Lombardi Trophy because they have the most already and are not stopping now.