The receiver, who signed a one-year contract last summer, said Monday he would like to ink a long-term deal with the Steelers.
"In exit meetings (with the Steelers), it was pretty much stated that they were very pleased with me, who I was on the field and off the field," Cotchery told The Star-Ledger. " ... So from their standpoint, they definitely would want me back. And I expressed the same desire, so weâll see what happens."
The former N.C. State standout had 16 catches for 237 yards and two touchdowns in 2011, and caught the touchdown that forced overtime in the Steelers' eventual loss to the Denver Broncos in January's AFC Wild Card game.
Cotchery said he asked the Jets to trade or release him after the 2010 season because he was tired of "constantly taking a back seat" on the team. He said he sensed the deterioration in the club's morale.
"To be honest, yes, I saw a change," Cotchery said. "But to say that I could see how things would turn out for them this season, I canât act as if I knew that. But I just saw a change, and I felt like I wasnât a part of the future there in that type of atmosphere."