Steelers LB Anthony Chickillo sorry for being distraction following arrest

PITTSBURGH -- A day after being removed from the commissioner's exempt list, backup linebacker Anthony Chickillo apologized for being a distraction to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

"I just want to acknowledge that the situation has been a distraction for my teammates, the organization and the fans and I apologize for that," Chickillo said Friday.

Chickillo was arrested for three misdemeanors stemming from a domestic incident with his girlfriend on Oct. 20 at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. All charges against him were withdrawn earlier this week. Shortly after that, the league removed him from the commissioner's exempt list.

"Coach [Mike] Tomlin has been supportive, taking it one day at a time, just do what I can to grow as a person and a football player," Chickillo said, adding he also talked with other members of the organization.

Though he no longer faces criminal charges, Chickillo can still be subject to NFL discipline. The league is continuing to investigate the incident.

According to the criminal complaint, the woman told police the two got into a verbal argument over table games in the casino before returning to their room.

Once back in the room, according to documents, Chickillo grabbed her by both arms, forcing her against the wall and door. She then said Chickillo threw her to the ground and smashed her iPhone. The woman then locked herself in the bathroom, according to the criminal complaint, and waited for police to arrive. Chickillo admitted to pushing the woman down, per the complaint. The police said the woman had "visible redness to both her right and left biceps areas, with bruising beginning to form."

The woman was cited for harassment in the incident. Those charges were also withdrawn.

"I am grateful that no charges [were pursued] from the legal system, grateful for that and hopeful moving forward with the NFL that they find the same thing," Chickillo said.

Chickillo returned to practice as a member of the active roster on Thursday. On Friday he said he is unsure whether he'll play against the Colts on Sunday.

"These past two days have been my first practices back, and that decision is obviously up to coach Tomlin and Coach [Keith] Butler," he said. "And when my number's called, I'm going to be ready."