Dec 24, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Cleveland Browns wide receiver Corey Coleman (19) looks on during a game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. The Bears won 20-3. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports
As reported by Adam Schefter last night, the Cleveland Browns have traded former first-round draft pick, WR Corey Coleman to the Buffalo Bills for a seventh-round draft pick in 2020. A standout at Baylor, Coleman has been bothered by injuries since arriving in the NFL, and just couldn’t string together some consistently strong performances. He’s still young enough that he can turn that around though, so it is a move that makes sense for a late-round pick for the Bills.
Looking at Coleman’s career so far with PFF’s new and improved Premium Stats 2.0 doesn’t paint a pretty picture, with PFF grades of 61.7 and 60.3 in his first two seasons in the NFL, but when you dig a little deeper, there were flashes there that indicate we shouldn’t give up on him just yet. In 2017, he had two games where he looked much more like the receiver everyone thought he could be coming out of college, with five catches for 53 yards and a touchdown to go along with a 79.3 PFF grade against the Pittsburgh Steelers to open the season, and a 79.8 graded performance where he had five catches for 62 yards and a touchdown against the Green Bay Packers in Week 14. There was also a 73.4 PFF grade in just the second game of his career, a five-catch, 104-yard, two-touchdown performance against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 2 of 2016.
The other thing to remember is that Coleman hasn’t exactly been blessed with productive quarterback play in his time in Cleveland. As a rookie, the Browns used multiple different quarterbacks, with just Cody Kessler producing a PFF season grade above 65.0. Somehow, things were even worse in 2017, with then-rookie DeShone Kizer, also now traded off the roster, seeing the bulk of the snaps but producing a PFF grade of just 52.8, and the second-lowest adjusted completion percentage among quarterbacks with at least 200 dropbacks at 65.5 percent.
Coleman has his flaws, including a 14.8 percent drop rate that was tied for seventh-worst among wide receivers to see at least 50 targets in 2017, but when you factor in the injuries and instability at the quarterback position, his early struggles aren’t a death sentence for his NFL career just yet. Before writing off Coleman as a bust, consider that the only two players among the Browns wide receivers and tight ends…