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NFL Combine 2014: Steelers GM Stands by Trade With Browns

The Steelers' general manager reflects on last year's trade with the Browns. Last year, the Browns were frowned upon for trading within the division. Heading into this year's draft, it looks like the Browns might get the upper hand after all.

Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert speaks at the NFL Combine.
Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert speaks at the NFL Combine.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Various coaches and members of the front office are busy speaking to the media at press conferences this week for the NFL Combine, meaning there will be a handful of Browns-related nuggets we can get our hands on. One of those nuggets comes from Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert. Colbert was asked whether he regretted trading a third-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft for a fourth-round pick in last year's draft, which was used to select safety Shamarko Thomas.

"When you’re 8-8 nothing was right. We have to go back and look at everything we did. We’ve done that and we’ll continue to do that. But at that point we felt that trading our third-round pick this year for a fourth-round pick last year to get a player, Shamarko Thomas, a safety that we felt was worthy of a third-round pick, we’d do it again today. But the result is the 8-8 [season], and we’ll see if Shamarko can help change that. If he does, it was a good deal. If he doesn’t, it wasn’t."

The "we'd do it again today" line sounds like a line of you-know-what -- it's the same thing the Indianapolis Colts expected us to buy when they said they would do the Trent Richardson trade again. Of course, the question is pretty much a no-win one for Colbert -- if he says the trade is bad right now, that wouldn't be too good for Thomas' morale. To Colbert's credit, he does leave the pick somewhat in the "undecided" category by saying that if Thomas can't help them improve upon their 8-8 mark from a year ago, then it wasn't a good deal.