Brown signed a new five-year contract with the Steelers on Monday. Brown's deal will keep him with the Steelers through the 2021 campaign and includes a four-year extension worth $68 million, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. The timing of the agreement comes as Brown was set to enter the final year of his old contract in 2017. Now secured in Pittsburgh for the long haul, the 28-year-old will aim to remain among the league's elite wide receivers and build on his four straight seasons of at least 105 catches, 1,280 yards, and eight touchdowns this year.
Brown and the Steelers have made significant progress in negotiations over a long-term extension, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports. Brown's five-year, $42.5 million extension signed in 2012 is set to expire after the upcoming season, so both he and the Steelers are in talks to secure his future in Pittsburgh through a lucrative new deal. With negotiations reportedly close to being finalized, Brown could have such a contract in place by the time the new league year begins Mar. 9. At 28 years old, Brown has registered at least 105 catches, 1,280 yards and eight touchdowns for four straight seasons.
Brown seven of nine targets for 77 yards in Sunday's 36-17 AFC championship game loss to the Patriots. The Patriots followed their proven method of focusing on limiting the opponent's No. 1 receiving threat, a task that became even easier when Le'Veon Bell was lost to a groin injury after only six carries. Brown was able to shake loose for some receptions in the short-to-intermediate passing game, but his game-long reception was a modest 18 yards. The sixth-year pro was actually second in targets to Eli Rogers on the night and shared the team lead in receptions with him and DeAngelo Williams. Despite the disappointing conclusion to the season, Brown posted a fourth consecutive 100-reception campaign, while also posting the second-highest amount of touchdowns (12) in his career.
Brown secured six of 11 targets for 108 yards in Sunday's 18-16 divisional-round victory over the Chiefs. He also gained nine yards on a pair of punt returns. Brown hauled in a game-long 52-yard bomb in the first quarter, and also secured a game-clinching seven-yard reception for a first down on the first play following the two-minute warning. With the Chiefs out of timeouts, the Steelers were able to take a knee on the following three plays, clinching their trip to Foxboro for the conference championship. Brown will naturally be a key component of next week's gameplan, and he figures to see plenty of Patriots CB Malcolm Butler, against who he's had success in the past. The Pro Bowler now has 11 receptions on 20 targets for 232 yards and two touchdowns over the first pair of playoff games.
Brown caught five of nine targets for 124 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday's 30-12 win over the Dolphins. Brown enjoyed a dominant share of the Steelers passing game in this one, as no other pass-catcher was targeted more than twice or totaled more than 21 yards. He also made an impact with his touches, averaging 24.8 yards per catch thanks to touchdown grabs of 50 and 62 yards in the first quarter to help propel his team to victory. Brown appears to be all systems go heading into next week's matchup with the Chiefs and will likely give their talented secondary everything they can handle with a spot in the AFC Championship game up for grabs.
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