|Cotchery could provide depth and provide Roethlisberger some much-needed comfort. (US Presswire)|
From 2006-08 with the Jets, Jerricho Cotchery averaged 78.3 catches per season, but last year, in his only season in Pittsburgh, those numbers fell dramatically. Cotchery, in 13 games, made 16 catches for 237 yards and two touchdowns and was mostly an afterthought on offense. And though Cotchery, in free agency, had the chance to return to the interested Jets this offseason, he has decided instead to make his home in Pittsburgh for another two years.
That's what the New York Daily News is reporting, writing that Cotchery has agreed to a two-year deal with the Steelers.
Without the retired Hines Ward around any longer, it makes sense that Cotchery -- who also got looks from the Chiefs and Rams -- will get more of an opportunity to compete with Emmanuel Sanders for the No. 3 receiver spot.
While this signing won't make huge news, it also could quietly be a big deal for the team. Just listen to what Ben Roethlisberger had to say about Cotchery last month.
"Without Hines, I think you have to do everything you can to sign Jerricho back," Roethlisberger told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "He's not only a veteran leader in that room but a really good player. I'd love to see him come back because he's a really good receiver and I like what he brings to the team."
There's a good reason for Roethlisberger to think so. As ESPN.com's Jamison Hensley points out, there isn't much depth in the Steelers receiver corps after Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown and Sanders -- who has had a tough time staying healthy.
Perhaps Cotchery isn't as prolific as he once was, but he could be, in Ward's absence, that veteran presence that provides comfort to Roethlisberger.
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Josh Katzowitz on Twitter here: @joshkatzowitz.