CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – The Browns turned to their division rivals for help at receiver Saturday.
Cleveland acquired Sammie Coates and gave back the 2018 sixth round pick they got for cornerback Justin Gilbert last year while also adding a 2019 seventh round pick.
“We obviously had a trade today and we’ll be looking at every opportunity to improve the roster moving forward,” executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown said.
It was the third trade in 5 years between the 2 teams.
Coates, a third-round pick in 2015 out of Auburn, is a reclamation project for senior offensive assistant Al Saunders and the Browns. He had 22 catches for 446 yards and 2 touchdowns in 20 games, 5 starts, for the Steelers over his first 2 seasons but a pair of broken fingers and a recent knee scope set him back.
“He’s another big, fast athlete,” head coach Hue Jackson said. “He has real-time speed, he’s made some big plays at Pittsburgh, obviously he gives us another chance to stretch the field, he’s a physical blocker at the point of attack, so I think he’s an upgrade for our team and he’s a good special teams player so we’re excited to have him.”
Pittsburgh signed former Browns cornerback Joe Haden on Thursday hours after he was released by Cleveland.
The Browns and Steelers will open the season Sept. 10 at FirstEnergy Stadium.