Mike Wallace is still with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but the question now is when exactly he will join the team.
The deadline for another team to make an offer to Wallace passed on Friday with no offers to the receiver. That is good news for the Steelers because Wallace now must stay with Pittsburgh unless they choose to trade or release him, but that is highly unlikely.
However, Wallace told someone within the Steelers organization that he will not sign his tender until he has to. This could mean that Wallace will not be with the team until after training camp begins. Wallace isn’t happy with the 1st round tender that Pittsburgh is offering him, $2.7 million, and is seeking a long-term deal.
One can’t fault Wallace for wanting to get paid after he outplayed his initial rookie contract. Wallace is a top 10 receiver in the NFL and wants to be paid as one. The problem for Wallace is that Pittsburgh has never overpaid a player who they think is replaceable. The Steelers have two very good up and coming receivers in Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders, and have other needs that they could use the money on.
It would be nice if both parties set aside their differences to on focus on football matters, but this is the business of the NFL. Teams don’t want to pay players unless they absolutely have to, and players want to get the maximum amount of dollar signs when they can because of the high risk of injury.
The next date to keep an eye on is June 15. Wallace has until that date to sign the tender for $2.7 million; if he doesn’t sign by that date Pittsburgh has the option to reduce the tender to $577,000. Surely Wallace will hold out as long as possible if that is the case.
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