With the NFL lockout finally ending yesterday, teams are scrambling to sign free agents quickly. Pitt had a few players expected to sign deals in Dom DeCicco and Henry Hynoski.
DeCicco has his deal and is headed to Chicago.With the short time frame I expected both to sign quickly and Hynoski could be picked up by the time this post goes live.
Dom knew he would have his shot, even though it took a while with the lockout:
"I knew my time would eventually come," he said, pointing out that waiting for the lockout to end was difficult.
"The only (thing) I can compare it to is when you play a bad game and you want that next week to come so bad so you can prove yourself."
I'm a pretty big fan of DeCicco's and I expect him to have a legitimate shot to play in the NFL. He also picked a good team to head to - one of the benefits of being a free agent rather than a late draft pick. The Bears ranked 20th in pass defense last season and while DeCicco coming in and starting immediately is a huge stretch, there's no reason to think that if he comes in and impresses that he can't make the team.
Wait, go back - he had his pick of teams? Apparently so:
DeCicco, who played on one PIAA champion and two WPIAL title winners at Thomas Jefferson, said he had calls from the Steelers, Bills, Bears and Saints on Monday. He chose the Bears because they brought him to Chicago for a pre-draft visit and he developed a relationship with linebackers coach Bob Babich of Aliquippa and scout Rex Hogan.
"It made the most sense, even though they weren't offering the most money," he said.
Uh oh - DeCicco chose the Bears over the Steelers? How dare he. That won't earn any brownie points with most Pitt fans, but then again, I doubt he cares.
Meanwhile, Hynoski showed up on this NFL.com list as those most likely to sign free agent deals. It wasn't a huge surprise to me that he wasn't drafted, but I do expect some team to bring him in for at least a look.