Steelers WR Sammie Coates Still Hamstrung By Injured Fingers

Even through Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Sammie Coates dressed for the team’s Sunday home game against the Cleveland Browns the second-year Auburn product failed to play any snaps on offense or special teams. That’s probably not too surprising, however, being as Coates was limited all last week during practice due to a hamstring injury that he has been dealing with.

On Monday, Coates reportedly indicated that while his hamstring injury is “coming along”, his injured fingers won’t be 100 percent until after the season is over, according to Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Coates, who suffered two broken fingers on the same hand in the Steelers Week 5 game against the New York Jets, has caught just two passes for 14 yards since sustaining those injuries. The wide receiver caught 19 passes for 421 yards and two touchdowns in the Steelers first five games of the season with five of those resulting in gains of 41 yards or more.

As the Steelers prepare to host the Miami Dolphins in the Wild Card round of the playoffs, you really have to wonder if Coates will even dress for that game being as veteran Darrius Heyward-Bey has now returned from his foot injury and rookie Demarcus Ayers has emerged and is contributing after being promoted from the team’s practice squad a few weeks ago. Coates’ only redeeming quality right now is the fact that he’s played well on special teams while dealing with his injured fingers.

By the sound of things, Coates might have to have his fingers surgically repaired after the season is over. In the meantime, while he can probably be counted on to contribute on special teams, it’s hard seeing him playing much, if any, on offense moving forward into the postseason if he ultimately is allowed to dress.

Needless to say it’s a been a very disappointing season when it comes to Coates and especially considering that it looked like he would be a legitimate deep threat five games into the 2016 schedule.

  • Daniel

    Time to pull the plug on this guy..nxt man up

  • afrazier9

    Yeah he isn’t even relevant anymore. With emerging players like Hamilton, Ayers, and Hey-Bey he is the odd man out to me. The offense should be better off with being able to throw to more receivers, and not one trick ponies

  • Craig M

    I’m not yet sold on him but I think it’s to early to pull the plug on him because of Bryants status. Best to just throw him into the mix along w/ DHB and Cobi until everything gets sorted out. I think we could get a decent draft pick for him but that would be scary if he goes somewhere else and develops.

  • steeltown

    More disappointing when it comes to Wheaton IMO dont get me wrong, both injuries have forced others to step up, like Rogers, Ayers and Ham which has been fun to watch. Atleast Coates showed tremendous upside early on, played well on special teams and should be healed and ready to go next season.

    Wheatons story ends with very little positive contribution or outlook for the future. Although he could explode on some other Team

  • John

    I like Sammie but it sounds like he will not dress. It will be Ayers and DHB instead. The team seems to have confidence in them now. Coates is better than both but it sounds like the team (and maybe Coates himself) don’t know what to expect. Hope I am wrong and Coates proves to be a stud either this week or against the Chiefs. He wrecked them earlier this year and we need that.

  • SeventhHeavan

    Coates has been taking someone else’s helmet all year. Put him on IR for crying out loud! We hear the same think every week with his status. I like Coates but it’s time to figure him into next season.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    I would have him out there in practice and throwing all kinds of passes. Can he catch or not? Can he at least catch a ball that’s dropping in the bucket on a 9 route? If he can do that then he can take it to thee house and that might be the difference in a playoff game.

    If he can do nothing, then no helmet at all.

  • The Chin

    I imagine I’ll be in the minority here, but I think Coates might be the one struggling to get a hat on game days next season. Bryant is without question a better deep threat with more consistent hands. If Coates can’t prove to be a better possession receiver his value may rest mainly on ST. I hope I’m wrong and he blossoms. But I think considering the others in that room, he may struggle to fit.

  • steeltown

    Yea, with Bryants uncertainty there’s no way you give up on this kid, even if Bryant returns you still dont give up on a 3rd Rder with huge upside

  • PaeperCup

    Thank goodness DHB is healthy. I hope Sammie was watching the game to see how to challenge for the ball.

  • Zhan 使美国再次伟大

    IF Bryant comes back next year and keeps his head on straight, you may be right.

    I still like Coates a lot. And if Bryant does come back OK, what an embarrassment of riches at WR.

    Hopefully they won’t need to take another WR in this year’s draft…

  • dany

    It’s not even about no way you dont give up on him, it’s that there’s literally zero chance they’re gonna pull the plug on him. On his season, I might agree, especially if he really cant catch right now

  • melblount

    I would give a hat to any/all of DHB, Eli, Cobi and/or Ayers over Coates this week. His fingers are a known and definite issue. His hammy could sideline him at any moment in this game. This week’s decision should be a no-brainer. Coates may get his chance later this post-season and should definitely get it next camp/pre-season.

  • Boots

    DHB coming back may actually make it easier for Coates to make a few plays if he is active. Miami is beat up at safety and if DHB can make it harder for them to single him out as the deep threat he could potentially get a few shots one on one downfield

  • James Cowan

    It doesn’t help him that he can’t catch, make adjustments or run routes. Even if his hamstring is fine on Saturday I wouldn’t dress him.

  • Steelers12

    we need him healthy for super bowl run

  • Douglas Andrews

    I know we had a lack of WR numbers but Coates should be resting and not playing ST’s. Honestly how much better does he makes ST’s. I’d say not much. His best value is as a deep threat in this offense. So with that said he needs to heal up and able to to contribute on offense.

  • pittfan

    He’s SHOWN one heck of a lot more than Golson and the team hasn’t given up on him. I would give him a hat for special-teams and even run him on a deep route just to see what the defense will do.
    If they single up on him man on man Id throw to him

  • Taylor Williams

    DHB is a better deep threat than both

  • Geoffrey Benedict

    He can’t practice on IR. If he is inactive he still gets to practice.

  • Geoffrey Benedict

    Coates was incredible through 5 games. Recording 421 yards on 31 targets (13.6 yards per target), if he had managed to get 154 yards on his last 18 targets (8.6 ypt) he would have led the league in yards per target.

    Instead he managed only 2 receptions and 14 yards on those last 18 targets.

    He’s been active because DHB was out and Coates can still be a gunner without putting much risk on his fingers getting further injured. I expect he will be inactive in upcoming games.

  • Applebite

    No they don’t. He needs to heal up those fingers, or he’s going to be practically useless to the team. What they really need to do is trust Hamilton more.

  • TrappenWeisseGuy ;

    I’ve had a broken finger before, and toe as well, and it sure didn’t take me 3 months to heal. But then again I didn’t step on my own hand with cleats on.

  • Steelers12

    Coates stretches the field, go look at teams success in scoring when he was healthy

  • Jaybird

    Trappenweisseguy I gauarentee he’s got ligament or tendon damage. I’ve been saying for a while this broken finger stuff has to be more severe than a cracked bone. I too have broken multiple fingers , a toe , hand , wrist , and elbow ,and my nose. I never needed surgery to pin or reset any of them so they always healed and were good as new in two months. Then again , I never cleated myself either!

  • Jaybird

    Better than Bryant?? No way, I gotta disagree with you brother. Bryant is a special talent . I think teams will be double teaming next year ( if he ever gets his crap together) over AB.

  • Matthew Marczi

    Better hands? Absolutely not. He dropped 14 passes last year. As for being a better deep threat, Coates had 6 catches of at least 40 yards in the first 5 games this year when he was healthy. That’s still tied for the most receptions of 40 yards or more this year. Bryant had 5 in 11 games in 2015, and 5 in 10 games in 2014.

  • cory

    The only disappointing thing is the consistent articles about him being a disappointment. Dude has 2 broken fingers and his primary job is to catch a football using those broken fingers. Get a clue idiots!!

  • VaDave

    It does if you have ligament and tendon damage. I’m going to assume this was a compound fracture, with bone shards piercing the skin to the point he needed stiches. Ligament and Bursa ruptures ( the sheath the tendons run trough) are quite common, and cause what is known as drop finger. Having been through a bursa rupture and ligament damage, it took me about a year to heal. It’s my understanding there are two fingers involved. When splinted, no doubt he could continue to play special teams, but catching a ball in the winter coming in at 60-70 mph, I would think that would be very challenging.

  • VaDave

    Jaybird, agreed in full. Bones will knit. The bursa ruptures take forever. They are attached to the top of the finger, and rap around. When they go, they take little bits of bone fragments where they are attached. My othtopeed said the healing time for surgical reattachment was 11 months to a year. Non-surgical treatment about a year.

  • VaDave

    Unless we need him on ST, he’ll be on the bench.

  • pittsburghjoe

    for this year at least.

  • Steve Johnson

    Sit him; even when he was healthy, he never would go up and fight for the ball. We’ve already seen the opposite in Eli Rogers, DHB and D. Ayers. I was really expecting to see more from Coates this year. One thing is for sure, the Steelers are stacked at the WR position. Since he’s injured, let the kid heal.

  • Steeler4Ever

    im with you bro…..unbelievable negative stories this year…..the man is a receiver with broken fingers ( plural)

  • Steeler4Ever

    who cares….when you can catch bombs all day long from Ben…

  • Rocksolid20

    There will always be injuries , he’s valuable depth .

  • He proved his value when he was healthy and would have continued to be a weapon all year if not for the injury to his fingers. I do agree with you about one thing: let him heal. He will be a big part of the offense next season.

  • Dshoff

    I say put Coates down for the year and let DHB play. DHB has proven that he can do the long ball and go up and fight for it. I would just love to see Ben hit him in stride. Either way, teams are going to have to respect his burning speed. Right when I had completely written DHB off last year as a bust, he came in and made some great plays on some long balls. Time to do it again.


    Would you rather have Bryant or Coates right now? Assuming 100% healthy.


    If I’m the Steelers, I’m doing my best to trade Coates this offseason. Maybe for a pick straight up or a package deal during the draft.

  • Steve Johnson

    Ok, let me ask you one question, how often did Coates fight for the ball when he was healthy? DHB hands can sometimes be questionable as well, but one thing I’ve seen from DHB is this, he will go up and fight for the ball. The same can be said for Eli Rogers, Colbi Hamilton and D. Ayers.

  • Matthew Marczi

    I honestly can’t say. I don’t think there’s enough of a body of evidence to make that determination. Coates’ entire resume is basically five games.

  • Dubb Betts

    Hurting his career at this point

  • Dubb Betts

    He shouldn’t be playing or practicing. This sucks for coates now dhb is back Steelers have another deep threat and can win without Coates. If bryant comes back next year coates opportunities will be limited. He might be done making plays for the Steelers unfortunately
    This could of been prevented if Tomlin had rested him