Somewhere, I’m on record as saying that I don’t care if Mike Wallace sits comfortably on his couch this summer because he wants more money. My only issue with that strategy is that unlike previous offseasons, the Steelers have a new coordinator.
And to hear Ben tell it, Todd Haley’s offense is, well, frustrating. So it stands to reason that Wallace would have a better chance of learning it if he were on the premises instead of taking mental reps from home. So that’s my only reservation, although it’s sort of a big one.
On Tuesday, during his TribLive show, Ike Taylor recounted his conversation with Wallace from the Memorial Day weekend. “There is a lot of frustration with Mike right now,” Taylor said via the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review‘s Mark Kaboly. “He wants to be here. … But at the same time he wants his paper. Mike feels like he outperformed his last contract. But he’s dealing with a monster, and that’s the Pittsburgh Steelers … they are not going to let you dictate to them on how you feel.”
Again, I get where Wallace is coming from but Ike is spot on: even if Kevin Colbert says the organization wants to lock Wallace up long term, the Steelers have all the leverage. I actually tried to convince myself this spring that I’d be willing to swap Wallace for a first-round pick but there weren’t any restricted free-agent offers made (leverage advantage: Pittsburgh).
So here we are. Wallace has two weeks to sign his tender or the Steelers could reduce his 2012 salary from $2.7 million to $577,000 (I’m guessing they won’t). And then there will be just six weeks until training camp. I’m guessing Wallace will be there (as do Ike and Antonio Brown) and if he plays well next season nobody will remember this. If he struggles … yeah, we know how that movie ends, too.