Retaining Mike Wallace Should be Among Pittsburgh’s Top Priorities this Off-Season

With the season over it is now time for Pittsburgh to focus on re-signing the players who are due to be free agents at season’s end. Many key players are going to have the ability to test the market.

Mike Wallace is one of these players that Pittsburgh must resign. He is becoming one of the best deep threats in the league. He has the speed to run past most cornerbacks, and has the ability to cut on a dime and get open across the middle. Defenses must respect Wallace’s home-run potential, thus opening the field for other players. Wallace makes the whole offense better and can strike at any moment. Wallace is a restricted free agent, meaning that Pittsburgh can match offers from any team in order to keep him.

Another key player the Steelers need to retain is offensive tackle Trai Essex. He has the skills to play all five positions on the line, which is a key asset due to the Steelers recent history of injuries up front. Essex was asked to play center this season against St. Louis after backup Doug Legurksy went down. It is extremely difficult to transition from being strictly a protector to suddenly being responsible for calling out blocking duties and snapping the ball.

All three of Pittsburgh’s backup quarterbacks are free agents. They should focus on trying to re-sign Charlie Batch. He is a crowd favorite among the fans and is a veteran who can step in and run the offense if Big Ben goes down. It would be nice to sign Byron Leftwich or Dennis Dixon as well, but there are plenty of quarterbacks in the league who are serviceable if Pittsburgh chooses to let them walk.


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  • Ron Kelley

    I agree. But, I have one really big problem with Wallace. He’s a terrific receiver. But, he has to learn to go up and fight for the ball. In the playoffs, receptions are much harder to come by. Everyone is amped up. And, it’s rare that a receiver can just ran by people uncontested. Think back. Last year the same thing happened in the playoffs – Super Bowl. Wallace is a nine in my mind. Before he can ever become a ten he’ll have to show me that he can go up & fight for those really highly contested balls.