By Giuseppe Cincinnato
Fresh off of a Championship Campaign in 2019, Mass Pirates defensive back Cheatham Norrils looks to bring the championship mentality to Worcester.
Last year, the Toledo native spent the year with the Albany Empire in the Arena Football League. He finished the year with 41 tackles, a forced fumble, and four interceptions in just 10 games with the team. He never gave up a touchdown and allowed a minimal 41 total yards all season including the playoffs.
The previous season, Norrils was on the Pirates in their inaugural season where he finished second on the team in tackles, recording a total of 59 accompanied with four interceptions and a fumble recovery for a touchdown.
Norrils was a staple of the Empire defense in 2019 and hopes to do the same for the Pirates this year as he returns to the Worcester.
“For me having that experience, and knowing what it takes to get to that point,” Norrils told masspiratesfootball.com. “I feel like I’ll definitely be one of those people to be a leader going into the season or somebody that has the energy to play at a high level on a consistent basis and do my part; whatever that may be.”
A championship is not the only hardware the motivated Norrils is chasing, he expects to contend for the Defensive Player Of The Year award next season.
“I have always had high goals, my expectations for myself are always bigger… on an individual level [my goal] is defensive player of the year or MVP and on a team level, win a championship,” Norrils said. “I want to play at such a high level that I might not even finish the season, I might end up getting my chance outdoors in the CFL or NFL… I just want to do the best wherever I’m at, that’s just been my motivation, ‘why not me? Why can’t it be me?’”
Norrils’ high motivation stems from his mentality to consistently compete at a high level to the point it becomes contagious to his fellow teammates.
“Naturally, when you have a high level of energy or high level of play, then everyone else is trying to match you, and get better,” Norrils said. “[Also] compete much more and in the end, it makes everyone around you better.”
The Toledo product has very high aspirations for this season and the pandemic has not stopped him from trying to reach his goals.
“I have still been able to work out, eat healthy…and still get a lot accomplished in this offseason,” Norrils said. “I’ve just been making sure my feet [quickness] and technique [get better] because once you trust your technique as a DB, you are that much better.”
The Massachusetts Pirates are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The Pirates play all home games at the DCU Center located at 50 Foster St. Worcester, MA. 01608. For more information on the Massachusetts Pirates please call (508) 452-MASS (6277), email [email protected] or visit www.masspiratesfootball.com. Single-game tickets are available online at ticketmaster.com or the DCU Center Box Office. For group outings please call 508-452-MASS (6277). Follow the Pirates on Facebook at Facebook.com/MAPirates on Instagram @mass.pirates, as well as Twitter @mass_pirates.