Share This Page

Steelers come to terms with lineman, cornerback

The Steelers brought back two more of their unrestricted free agents today. Offensive tackle Trai Essex signed a two-year contract to return to the team and cornerback Fernando Bryant agreed to terms on a one-year deal.

Essex received a signing bonus of $500,000 and salaries of $620,000 and $800,000 over the next two seasons.

Bryant will earn a base salary of $745,000 in 2009.

Essex, 26, is a former third-round pick of the Steelers in 2005.

Bryant, who will turn 32 on March 26, signed with the Steelers last Nov. 11. Essex and Bryant are the seventh and eighth members of last year's team to re-sign with the Steelers.

Offensive tackles Max Starks (franchise player) and Willie Colon (restricted free agent) returned on one-year deals, as have unrestricted free agents Andre Frazier and Arnold Harrison, both linebackers (Harrison spent 2008 on injured reserve). Harrison will earn a base salary of $460,000 in 2009.

Tight end/fullback Sean McHugh (restricted free agent) signed a three-year deal. Guard Chris Kemoeatu (unrestricted free agent) returned with a five-year contract. Essex has played in 33 career regular-season games and two playoff games.

He started one game in 2005, three in the 2007 regular season and one in the 2007 postseason, all at left tackle in place of Marvel Smith.

Essex, who appeared in nine regular-season games and one playoff game in 2008, can also play guard.

Bryant played just two games for the Steelers in 2008, both in November. He played previously with Jacksonville (1999-2003) and Detroit (2004-07) and went to training camp with New England in 2008 prior to being released.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.