View Full Version : Mike Wallace is no longer a one-trick pony

02-02-2011, 09:56 PM
Wallace has scored no TDs and has been a non-factor in the playoffs so far, catching only 3 passes for 20 yds versus the Ravens and only 1 for 6 yds against the Jets.

this Sunday would be a great time for a breakout game ... :tt2

Wallace no longer a one-trick pony

Posted Feb. 02, 2011 @ 6:51 p.m. ET
By Keith Schleiden


DALLAS — There's no arguing that second-year Steelers WR Mike Wallace is a capable deep man. With speed to burn, he's proven capable of getting behind opposing defensive backs and making big plays.

Wallace led the AFC by gaining 21.0 yards per catch in 2010, which was second-best in the NFL. He led the league in receiving average as rookie last season. He had 26 receptions this season go for at least 20 yards, which is the most by a Steeler since Hall of Famer John Stallworth had 24 in 1984.

But the Steelers were not satisfied with Wallace's ability to just get deep, and head coach Mike Tomlin labeled his burgeoning star receiver as a "one-trick pony" early in the season.

Tomlin copped to the label being a motivational ploy on Wednesday when asked how many tricks Wallace now has up his sleeve after leading the Steelers with 60 receptions, 1,257 yards and 10 touchdowns this season.

"Oh, one and a half," Tomlin quipped in response to the question, clearly not wanting to give the youngster any reason to develop a big head. "You know, we as coaches, we'll pull anything out for motivational ploys. Mike understands that."

Then Tomlin sounded as if he would use his press-conference platform as another way to motivate Wallace.

"Mike has a physical distinguishing characteristic," Tomlin noted. "Of course he is capable of taking the top off the coverage. I was just trying to encourage him in my way to be a complete player. He has the desire to do that. He wants to be a great player. We all know that if he's going to do that, if he's going to have a chance to do that, it's going to be because he has a complete, well-rounded game. He plays with the ball. He plays without the ball. He can run a variety of routes. He's good in the run game, etc., etc. All of those are things that he's trying to develop, and he's doing a nice job of it this year."

Wallace admitted Wednesday that he isn't thrilled with the label.

"I don't like it. I never liked it. But I really don't care," Wallace told PFW. "I know it's all motivation. I just go out every week and try to prove him wrong and make him come up with a new name."

Wallace admitted he believes that Tomlin is an excellent motivator, knowing how to inspire players to work to get better without breaking them down. But he is still waiting for that new name.

"I mean, I've scored touchdowns and made plays in all types of different ways, every week when he said it, (but) he still gives me the same name," Wallace said. "I don't think it's going to change until at least next year."

Steelers WR coach Scottie Montgomery told PFW that Wallace has the ability to take his game to the next level if he continues to improve, noting that he wants the 24-year-old to become a "significant player."

"There's a little bit of a difference (between) great players and significant players," Montgomery said. "Significant players can win you a game every week. They can change the destiny of the team at times. And we do have some significant players on our team right now. And I think Mike (Tomlin) has done a great job of pushing certain buttons on certain guys."

Montgomery noted that since Wallace was challenged by the one-trick pony ploy, his production has increased and his ability to contribute in a number of ways has grown.

"Now Mike wants to score on a one-step slant or he wants to be a great blocker out on the edge," Montgomery said. "He wants to show people now to the point where he won't let us call him a one-trick pony because he's put a plethora of things on film, and on tape as we like to say, that will help him become a significant player, and go from being just a great player that (picks up) a lot of yards."

Like Tomlin, though, Montgomery is cautious about letting Wallace know how far he has come.

"We still give him a hard time, so don't tell him I said he's not a one-trick pony," Montgomery ordered.

Which trick does Wallace plan on pulling out on Super Bowl Sunday?

"Whichever one I need to do at the time," the Ole Miss product said. "I mean, I have a lot of them in my arsenal, so whatever one I need to do at the time, however the situation sets it up, that's the one I'll use."

Sunday just might be the best time for Wallace to make a case for deserving that new nickname.

http://www.profootballweekly.com/2011/0 ... trick-pony (http://www.profootballweekly.com/2011/02/02/wallace-no-longer-a-one-trick-pony)

02-02-2011, 09:57 PM
Yeah but worrying about him has opened up underneath for Sanders and Brown.

02-02-2011, 10:08 PM
Yeah but worrying about him has opened up underneath for Sanders and Brown.

:Agree :Agree :Beer

02-02-2011, 10:26 PM
Double teamed or not he needs to be more involved in the offense from a catch standpoint. He's too dangerous with the ball in his hands not get more touches. He's going to have develop the ability to beat a double team at some point and not just be the decoy.


02-02-2011, 10:47 PM
I'd say that the conditions in which the Super Bowl will be played are more conducive to success for Wallace than the past two games.

Wind, freezing cold, and bad footing play havoc with the deep ball game. I don't expect much of any of that on Sunday.

02-04-2011, 01:12 AM
Perrotto: Wallace has many tricks

TEXT SIZE By: John Perrotto Beaver County Times
Thursday February 3, 2011


FORT WORTH, Texas — The NFL has handed out seemingly every award possible with every corporate sponsor possible during Super Bowl week.

One award the NFL doesn’t bestow, though, is most improved player. If it did, Steelers wide receiver Mike Wallace would be a prime candidate.

Now that is not to say Wallace was a stiff last season in his rookie year. He caught 39 passes for 756 yards and six touchdowns, and showed big-play ability as he averaged 19.4 yards a reception.

In the NFL, coaches always say that a player makes his biggest strides between his rookie and second seasons. That has certainly been the case with Wallace.

Wallace has gone from a receiver who can get the occasional big gainer to a reliable member of the starting lineup, stepping in for the traded Santonio Holmes without the Steelers’ offense suffering.

Wallace led the team in receiving in the regular season with 60 catches for 1,257 yards, a 20.4 average and 10 touchdowns.

If there is one player on the Steelers’ offense that has the chance to turn the Super Bowl around with one big play, it is Wallace.

However, it goes beyond statistics with the Steelers’ third-round draft pick in 2009 from Mississippi. He is more than just the one-trick pony of his rookie year when he was pretty much limited to using his sprinter’s speed to run deep routes.

“Mike is a one-and-a-half trick pony now,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said with a smile Wednesday.

Wallace has gotten better in all phases of the game, from running more precise routes to being more willing to catch the ball in traffic to blocking. Tomlin knows that but still doesn’t like to give Wallace too much credit yet.

“We as coaches will pull anything as a motivational ploy,” Tomlin said. “Mike understands that. Mike has a physical distinguishing characteristic. Of course, he’s able to take the top off the coverage. I’m just in my way trying to encourage him to be a complete player. He has a desire to do that. He wants to be a great player.

“We all know that if he is going too that, it is going to be because he has a complete, well-rounded game.”

Wallace was considered a special talent coming out of college. He was not, however, considered a can’t-miss player because of his lack of polish.

Yet Wallace says he is not surprised that he is approaching stardom after just two years in the league. In fact, in a non-arrogant way, he feels he’s earned it, especially by paying to the attention set by veteran wideout Hines Ward.

“I know how hard I work every day,” Wallace said. “I put in a lot of work and I really learn from the older guys like Hines, especially Hines, and take everything they have and put it in my arsenal. So, I think if you pay attention along with your natural ability then things can come a lot quicker than people think.”

Ward is the Steelers’ all-time leading receiver, having amassed 954 catches. Wallace has a long way to go to catch Ward but he sure seems intent on making a run at him.

http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sport ... ricks.html (http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sports_details/article/1501/2011/february/03/perrotto-wallace-has-many-tricks.html)

02-05-2011, 03:06 PM
how does a CB like Sam Shields go undrafted when he can run under 4.3?

A key matchup: Steelers WR Mike Wallace vs. Packers CB Sam Shields

Saturday, February 05, 2011
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Packers cornerback Sam Shields.


It has been a quiet postseason for Mike Wallace, both on the field and with his mouth.

He has only four catches for 26 yards in two playoff games, meager totals for a player who had a team-high 1,257 yards receiving and led the AFC with a per-catch average of 21 yards during the regular season.

He has been reluctant to voice the confident tone and repeat some of the bold declarations he made in the regular season, when he caught 10 touchdown passes -- six of 41 yards or longer.

This is about the closest he has come during Super Bowl week:

When asked the first thing that goes through his head when he gets single coverage, he said, "I'm just hoping the safety isn't going to come over the top, but I know most of the time it's going to be like that."

On the key to beating single coverage, he said: "Knowing that you can't be stopped by the other guy. You have to have confidence, first and foremost, and you have to have good technique. You have to be able to watch film and attack the guy's weaknesses like that."

And, finally, on the Green Bay cornerbacks he will be facing Sunday in Super Bowl XLV: "They're really good. They have one of the best corner tandems in the league, for sure."

The Packers' best cover corner is Tramon Williams, who was waived by the Houston Texans and signed as a free agent in 2009. His rapid development this season is one of the reasons the Packers were second in the NFC with 24 interceptions. Williams has nine interceptions in 19 games this season, including three in the postseason.

But their fastest corner is rookie Sam Shields, an undrafted free agent who has been timed between 4.2 and 4.3 seconds in the 40-yard dash. Even though the Packers don't typically assign a cornerback to follow a specific receiver, it is possible they could do that by assigning Shields, a converted wide receiver, to run with Wallace, especially in single coverage.

Shields is not a starter in the Packers' base 3-4 defense, but he lines up on the outside when they switch to their nickel package, which they play 75 percent of the time.

"I'm a fast guy and he's a fast guy," Shields said. "It's going to be a big challenge and I can't wait."

The Jets did that in the AFC title game, assigning their fastest corner, Antonio Cromartie, to follow Wallace. And it worked because Wallace had one catch for 6 yards.

Wallace was a nonfactor in the divisional playoff victory against the Baltimore Ravens, too, managing just three catches for 20 yards. This from a player who had seven 100-yard receiving games in the regular season.

Asked if the Packers have the best secondary he has faced, veteran receiver Hines Ward said: "No, the New York Jets had the best tandem. The Packers, no disrespect to them, they do have a great secondary, but I think [Darrelle] Revis and Cromartie, those two cornerbacks -- I don't know what your opinion is, but they're the best tandem of cornerbacks out there."

Sounds like something Mike Wallace would say.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11036/1123269-66.stm?cmpid=steelers.xml#ixzz1D6nMkTvm

02-06-2011, 11:11 AM
Tomlin has coached Burnell masterfully.

:tt1 :tt1 :tt1 :tt1 :tt1 :tt1 :tt1