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Old Reliable: WR Jerricho Cotchery finding second life with Steelers

  • 038d9cf6c3436526430f6a7067007071.jpg

    Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery (89) is celebrates with teammate Markus Wheaton (11) after making a touchdown catch in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (The Associated Press)

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    Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) celebrates with wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery (89) after they connected for a fourth quarter touchdown pass in an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (The Associated Press)

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery is speeding up at an age most players at his position are slowing down.

The 10-year veteran already has a career-high seven touchdown receptions for the Steelers (4-6), including five over the past three games. The seven touchdowns match Cotchery's combined total from 2009-2012.

Cotchery downplays his success, saying he's getting more opportunities because defenses are paying more attention to teammates Antonio Brown and Heath Miller.

Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger calls Cotchery one of the smartest players he's seen and says he brings a blue collar mentality that is similar to Miller, a three-time Pro Bowler.

Cornerback Ryan Clark likens Cotchery to a conversion van, something reliable that will get you safely from one spot to the next.

The Steelers travel to Cleveland (4-6) Sunday.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org