In a rare intra-division swap between rivals, Pittsburgh sent the former Auburn standout to Cleveland along with a seventh round pick in the 2019 draft, both teams announced. In return, the Steelers are getting the sixth-round pick they initially sent Cleveland last year in the Justin Gilbert trade.
While it's not exactly the Herschel Walker trade, this is a pretty savvy move from the Browns' front office if they end up getting any production out of Coates. They essentially bought a former third-round pick with the seller's money. As I noted in a piece I did on Coates last year, he has boom or bust potential in certain situations. Coates started the 2016 season on fire, hauling in 19 balls for 421 yards and two touchdowns. After Coates injured his hand, he tumbled out of the lineup and out of favor with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
Coates has always had uneven hands. While he can stretch the field better than a lot of receivers -- a valuable asset in Hue Jackson's offense -- what happens when the ball arrives is anyone's guess. Coates caught 50 percent of the balls thrown his way in 2015 and 42.9 last year. He's only been targeted a total of 51 times in two years.