View Full Version : Quite the combination

12-27-2010, 01:03 AM
Quite the combination
http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/ ... c3175b6635 (http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Quite-the-combination/adfca0a2-f7d6-457a-a573-7ac3175b6635)
By Teresa Varley - Steelers.com

Its no secret that Mike Wallace is a big-play threat for the offense, but its more apparent now that he and Ben Roethlisberger tied a Steelers record for most touchdowns of 40 yards or more by a quarterback-wide receiver combination. They tied the record set by Bubby Brister and Louis Lipps, who also combined for seven touchdowns of 40 yards or more.

Wallace pulled in a 43-yard touchdown pass from Roethlisberger in the second quarter against the Panthers to give the Steelers a 10-0 lead.

Hes doing a lot of different things and I told him (Thursday) he did something that I have been waiting for him to do, and that was on the deep ball, come back to it, said Roethlisberger. Make that play on our sideline, on their sideline. Thats something a lot of speed guys cant always do. If its short, they kind of let it go. He did a great job. He stopped and he came back and made a play. Thats what I was probably most happy to see from him.

With Wallace only in his second year, and continually developing, its a record that the two should break.

Hes a young man in development, said Coach Mike Tomlin. I like where he is right now, but he is capable of more. I like a guy that is producing plays to help us win, but at the same time I understand that there is more out there for him. Hes got a desire to be a great player and he works at it every day.

Wallace finished the Panthers game with four receptions for 104 yards. It was his sixth 100-yard game of the season, tying him with Yancey Thigpen (1997) for most 100-yard games in a season. Only John Stallworth (1984) has had more 100-yard games in a season with seven.

I had an okay game but I feel like I could have done some things better, said Wallace. I feel like I should have had 200 yards. I missed a pass out there.

12-27-2010, 11:44 AM
Wow! A chance to tie John Stallworth's record of seven 100 yd games in a season in only his 2nd season!!! That is amazing. I would argue that Wallace has every chance to be as good as Stallworth or Lipps. And with Ben throwing him the ball, he could break most of the records in Steelers' receiving. The only question is durability since he is a smallish WR....then again, Goodell has pretty much taken the hard-hitting safeties out of the game.

12-27-2010, 07:46 PM
Steelers' Wallace, Roethlisberger on verge of history

Monday, December 27, 2010
By Ray Fittipaldo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and wide receiver Mike Wallace.

Terry Bradshaw and John Stallworth played together for 10 seasons. Bubby Brister and Louis Lipps played on the same team for six years.

Ben Roethlisberger and Mike Wallace have been teammates for only 31 games, but they already are on the verge of becoming the most prolific big-play combination in franchise history.

When Roethlisberger and Wallace hooked up for a 43-yard touchdown in the second quarter of the Steelers' victory Thursday against Carolina, they tied a club record for most touchdowns of 40 yards or more by a quarterback-wide receiver combination.

It was the seventh time Roethlisberger and Wallace had combined for a touchdown of 40-plus yards. Brister and Lipps also combined for seven touchdowns of 40 or more yards. Bradshaw and Stallworth and Jim Finks and Ray Mathews had six such hookups.

Five of Wallace's 40-plus yard touchdowns have come this season.

"He's a great player," Wallace said of Roethlisberger. "He has a real good feel for the game. It's not hard for me as a receiver when you have a guy that good. I have the easy job, especially when you're playing with a guy like that."

Early in the season, Wallace was making his big plays on long passes over top of the coverage. He twice got behind defenders for long touchdowns against Tampa Bay, did it again three weeks later against Cleveland and once more the following week against Miami.

Defensive coordinators caught on and have been cognizant of Wallace's ability to get behind safeties. Wallace, a second-year speedster out of Ole Miss, earned the nickname "one-trick pony" from coach Mike Tomlin because of his desire to run deep routes, but he has been showing his coach a new trick or two in recent weeks.

Wallace's last two long touchdowns have been short passes with big yards after the catch. His 43-yarder against the Panthers came on a "hot" read by Roethlisberger. Wallace caught the pass down the seam and sprinted past linebackers and converging defensive backs for an easy score.

Wallace's 52-yard touchdown against the Raiders Nov. 21 was a short crossing route that he turned into a big play because of his ability to accelerate quickly.

"They don't really want me to get deep anymore, so they kind of try to prevent that," Wallace said of opposing teams in recent games.

"Guys are really falling off. They always have a safety over the top. It's kind of hard for me to get deep. I want to, but you always have to do other things. You always have to be able to improvise and do it another way. If you can't get it one way, work hard and get it another way. That's what I try to do."

Wallace is hopeful that his catch-and-run skills will force opposing coaches to rethink their approach to defending him.

"It's going to make the defenses come back down," Wallace said. "If I can catch it and run that means I'm going to score anyway. Sometimes, you'll have to play it honest. They'll have to come down anyway.

"Hopefully, with me doing that, the defenses are going to come back down, and we can get back over the top again."

Either way, Wallace's big-play abilities are opening things up for others. The Steelers have not been scoring a lot of touchdowns lately, but they have been piling up yardage. Tight end Heath Miller had five receptions for 73 yards against Carolina and rookie receivers Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown combined for six receptions for 74 yards.

"It helps the offense a lot," running back Rashard Mendenhall said of Wallace's big plays. "The defenses have to be sensitive to his skill set, and it opens up everything for everyone else on the field."

Wallace had four receptions for 104 yards against the Panthers. It was his sixth 100-yard game this season. Only one receiver in club history has seven 100-yard receiving games in a season.

Stallworth did it in 1984 with Mark Malone at quarterback.

All team records are regular-season records and do not include playoff games. Stallworth is in the Hall of Fame because of his ability to make big plays in Super Bowls. Stallworth had a 75-yard touchdown catch in Super Bowl XIII against Dallas and a 73-yarder against Los Angeles in Super Bowl XIV. The one against the Rams came when the Steelers were trailing early in the fourth quarter.

Wallace will have an opportunity to compete in the playoffs for the first time in a few weeks. He knows he will be remembered for what he accomplishes in the postseason much more than the regular season because of the uniform he wears. And he knows the Steelers won't last very long if their red-zone struggles continue.

That's why he was not pleased after the 27-3 victory against the Panthers that left a lot to be desired for the offense.

"We won the game, but I feel like we left a lot of things out there," he said. "We feel like we should have scored more points. That's the type of mentality we have to have, especially this close to the playoffs. It's time to be perfect. No one is satisfied."

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10361/11 ... z19M3zwKVF (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10361/1113684-66.stm#ixzz19M3zwKVF)

12-27-2010, 08:26 PM
I'd love to see this turn into a beautiful combination for the next 5-7 years! :Cheers

12-28-2010, 02:45 PM
Ben and Wallace had another 40 yard connection in the 2nd quarter, three series after their 43 yard TD pass, but that pass didn't result in a TD (got us in position for a Sushi chip shot FG to make it 20-0, though).

Pittsburgh Steelers at 01:26
1-10-PIT 45 (1:26) (Shotgun) 7-B.Roethlisberger pass incomplete deep left to 86-H.Ward.

2-10-PIT 45 (1:21) (Shotgun) 7-B.Roethlisberger pass deep left to 17-M.Wallace to CAR 15 for 40 yards (36-R.McClain).

Timeout #1 by PIT at 01:12.
1-10-CAR 15 (1:12) (Shotgun) 7-B.Roethlisberger pass incomplete short middle to 83-H.Miller. COVERAGE BY #30 GODFREY.

2-10-CAR 15 (1:07) (Shotgun) 7-B.Roethlisberger pass incomplete short middle to 17-M.Wallace.

Timeout #2 by PIT at 01:03.
3-10-CAR 15 (1:03) (Shotgun) 7-B.Roethlisberger pass short left to 88-E.Sanders to CAR 7 for 8 yards (31-R.Marshall).

Timeout #2 by CAR at 00:42.
4-2-CAR 7 (:42) (Pass formation) PENALTY on PIT-7-B.Roethlisberger, Delay of Game, 5 yards, enforced at CAR 7 - No Play.

4-7-CAR 12 (:42) (Field Goal formation) 6-S.Suisham 29 yard field goal is GOOD, Center-60-G.Warren, Holder-13-J.Kapinos.

CAR 0 PIT 20 Plays: 6 Possession: 0:47

12-28-2010, 02:50 PM
I too hope Ben and Wallace or Sander or all of them can go together like peas and carrots.