Anthony Cioffi faced limitations after he began spring on the Rutgers injury report. The Springfield (N.J.) Dayton cornerback product, however, received the go-ahead to scrimmage Saturday, where the defense impressed.
Cioffi, who heads into his junior season with 10 starts to his name, worked at both cornerback and safety during the scrimmage. It was not the first time he did so, and coach Kyle Flood spoke about being open to the same role this season.
“It’s fun,” Cioffi said. “I’m seeing the defense from a different perspective. I’m learning. Instead of getting the calls, it’s more about making them.”
Injuries to Cioffi crated major opportunities for the second-year corners on the roster – Isaiah Wharton, Darian Dailey and Dre Boggs. With Cioffi back, he wants to learn something new after two years at corernback.
“I think it’s fine,” Cioffi said about playing safety. “I know corner 100 percent, and with safety, it’s good to have range -- knowing both sides of the ball. If I’m doing something at corner, I know the safety has me and vice versa.”
Cioffi missed approximately half of spring with a “lower body” injury. His status for the spring game is uncertain.
“It was good just going out and having to stay on top of all of the plays and the calls,” Cioffi said on his return. “I felt good out there.”
The Rutgers defense struggled in the red zone Saturday, but tormented the offense in other periods with an aggressive pass rush and attack on the football.
“I wasn’t out here for the first scrimmage, but I think we played really well,” Cioffi said. “We came out with a lot of fire. It was very violent. That’s what we point to – a very physical, violent practice.”