Steelers send WR Sammie Coates to Browns for draft pick
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers traded wide receiver Sammie Coates to the Cleveland Browns, where the 2015 third-round pick will get a chance to revive his career.
The Steelers also sent a seventh-round pick in the 2019 draft to Cleveland in exchange for a sixth-round pick in 2018.
Coates caught 22 passes for 446 yards and two touchdowns across two seasons in Pittsburgh. He appeared headed for a breakout year in 2016, making at least one reception of 40 yards or more in each of Pittsburgh’s first five games before injuring two fingers following a 139-yard performance against the New York Jets.
Coates was never the same the rest of the season and missed half of training camp while recovering from minor surgery on his left knee.
The Steelers could afford to part with Coates following Martavis Bryant’s return from a yearlong drug suspension.
Cleveland had been in the market to upgrade a thin receiving corps.
After letting leading receiver Terrelle Pryor leave as a free agent, the Browns have done little to address a troublesome spot. They signed veteran Kenny Britt to start alongside Corey Coleman, who is being counted on to have a big season after the 2016 first-round pick had a so-so rookie year. Ricardo Louis and Rashard Higgins combined for only six catches in the preseason.
Coates at least gives rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer another deep threat.
Fierce rivals for decades, the Browns and Steelers haven’t done much business in the way of trades over the years. However, this deal comes a few days after Cleveland cut two-time Pro Bowl cornerback Joe Haden, who signed with Pittsburgh.
And now that Coates has jumped sides, there is no shortage of subplots heading into the Sept. 10 season opener between the teams in Cleveland.