SportsPulse: Trysta Krick checks in with Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press to get the details of Matthew Stafford’s monster contract and what it could mean for other NFL quarterbacks.
USA TODAY Sports
Joe Haden’s former AFC North rivals are his new teammates.
The cornerback agreed to a three-year deal worth $27 million with the Pittsburgh Steelers on Wednesday, according to ESPN, just hours after he was released by the Cleveland Browns.
A two-time Pro Bowl selection, Haden has struggled with injuries and missed 16 games in the last two seasons.
Haden, 28, joins a Steelers defense that ranked 12th in the NFL last season but was shredded by Tom Brady (384 passing yards, three touchdowns) and the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game.
Defensive coordinator Keith Butler told USA TODAY Sports earlier in August that he expects the team to play more man-to-man coverage, which is Haden’s forte.
“I think this year, we’ll play a little bit more man-to-man with them,” Butler said. “I think if you watch the Super Bowl, Atlanta tried to play more man-to-man with them, and their usual answer is, ‘we’re going to hurry up and get you at the line and spread everybody out and pick the mismatch.’ They’ve got quick receivers, and we’ve got to be able to match them.”
Artie Burns, the No. 24 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft, is expected to handle one of the starting cornerback jobs, while Ross Cockrell had been looking to fight off Coty Sensabaugh for the remaining spot.
Haden will face his former team twice this season, including a Week 1 matchup in Cleveland.
PHOTOS: Best of NFL preseason