4 players Steelers would love to poach in the AFC North before deadline

Cleveland Browns cornerback Greedy Williams
Cleveland Browns cornerback Greedy Williams /
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Cleveland Browns offensive guard Blake Hance (62). Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports /

Steelers could trade for Browns OT Blake Hance

As much as I would love to see offensive tackles Jedrick Wills or Jack Conklin in a Steelers uniform, that’s simply not realistic at all. The Browns arguably have the best offensive line in the league and their tackles are two of the best players on their roster. However, poaching the Browns swing tackle could give Pittsburgh a better option than they currently have.

Blake Hance was an undrafted free agent back in 2019 who was initially signed by the Buffalo Bills before landing in Cleveland this season. Hance was a guard who has some experience all over the line. However, when he was forced to step in at tackle due to injuries to both Wills and Conklin this season, Hance was extremely impressive.

Because Cleveland’s offensive tackles have been injured so often, we got our first really good look at Hance early in the 2021 season. While he’s only average as a pass protector, he’s been excellent paving the way for Browns running backs — most recently for fellow undrafted player, D’Ernest Johnson, who is coming off a monster game.

Hance has perhaps already shown enough to supplant Chukwuma Okorafor as the right tackle for the Steelers, and his position flexibility and play style remind me much of Matt Feiler a few years back. This wouldn’t be a flashy trade, but it’s one that could help.

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None of these trades are going to make or break Pittsburgh’s season, but they also won’t break the bank. If these AFC North rivals are willing to part with these players before the deadline, the Steelers should at least consider making a trade for them.