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Thread: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

  1. #1
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    Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    http://bleacherreport.com/tb/bf7Bx?utm_ ... h-steelers

    By Jamison Hensley

    The Steelers are concerned that another team will take Mike Wallace if they put a first-round tender on the restricted free agent instead of the franchise tag. The last place Pittsburgh would want to see the big-play wide receiver go is inside its own division.

    The Ravens and Bengals are among a handful of teams who are considered viable candidates to go after Wallace. Both teams are looking to upgrade at wide receiver. Both have more salary-cap room than the Steelers. And both have more motivation than other teams: Acquiring Wallace not only makes them stronger at wide receiver, but it takes away a playmaker that they won't have to defend twice a season.

    Wallace, a 2011 Pro Bowl performer, finished first among AFC North wide receivers with 72 catches and 1,193 yards receiving. He stretched the field with seven receptions of at least 40 yards, including touchdowns of 81 and 95 yards. He also caught one pass of 40 yards or more in six straight games this season.

    It's logical that the Ravens would be interested in Wallace. Baltimore only had two wide receivers who caught more than four passes last season (Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith) and neither had more than 57 receptions. But the Ravens have never traded a draft pick higher than a second-rounder (Terrell Owens in a 2004 deal that was ultimately rescinded) and they've come across as being more impressed with Antonio Brown than Wallace.

    Still, Baltimore would only have to part with the 29th overall pick, and the Ravens know no wide receiver the caliber of Wallace will drop that far. Wallace, who turns 26 before the season, is entering the prime of his career, which makes him a more attractive option than the other free agent wide receivers: Marques Colston (who will turn 29), Vincent Jackson (29) and Reggie Wayne (33).

    But Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome made it sound like the team wouldn't be pursuing restricted free agents.

    “There’s going to be some restricted free agents that we would like, but is it going to be worth giving up a significant amount of cash and cap and a draft pick?," Newsome said at the Ravens' season-ending press conference. "When you deal with that double-whammy, even though the rules have been relaxed, you just go, ‘Nah, no, I wouldn’t do it.’ That’s just my philosophy.”

    The bigger threat inside the AFC North to pry away Wallace is the Bengals, because of their cap situation. With an estimated $60 million in cap room, the Bengals could sign Wallace to a contract that includes a $20 million roster bonus (which ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter explains in the video). The Steelers, who are around $11 million over the cap right now, would be hard-pressed to match such an offer.

    Cincinnati can make this move and still draft in the first round, because it has two picks this year. The Bengals, who have the Raiders' 17th overall pick from the Carson Palmer trade, would give up the No. 21 pick for Wallace.

    Wallace would significantly upgrade Cincinnati's wide receiver group. The Bengals have one of the best young wide receivers in the league in A.J. Green, but they are looking for more consistent production than what they got from Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell. Imagine what Andy Dalton could do with Wallace, Green and tight end Jermaine Gresham.

    Of course, the Steelers can make themselves less vulnerable if they put the franchise tag (estimated $9.6 million) on Wallace instead of the first-round tender ($2.7 million). But it will take a massive round of cuts (wide receiver Hines Ward, guard Chris Kemoeatu, defensive end Aaron Smith, offensive tackle Jonathan Scott and inside linebackers Larry Foote and James Farrior) and restructured contracts (quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and linebacker James Harrison) to make enough cap room for the Steelers to use that tag.

    The Steelers have until March 5 to decide whether they will put the tag on Wallace or risk losing him.

  2. #2
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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    Bottomline is that no way I give Wallace a $9m+ Franchise Tag.

    I would gladly take the Bumgals #1 so that we could get Cordy Glenn with their pick and still get a good WR at #24 or another OL.

    Not sure that Wallace and AJ Green would be a good fit. They would prersent problems but both would want to go deep on every play.
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    Ravens, Bengals and the Patriots will all make a run at Wallace. With that said, IMO he's still not worth the Franchise Tag.....not even close.

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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    If we could get DeCastro for the 21st pick then I'd be tempted!

    However I believe his numbers speak for themselves and he will only get better, still yet to fully hit his peak and gives room for AB and the rest of the 'WR' core underneath to excel. I think you keep your game changers and big weapons!

  5. #5
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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo
    Bottomline is that no way I give Wallace a $9m+ Franchise Tag.

    I would gladly take the Bumgals #1 so that we could get Cordy Glenn with their pick and still get a good WR at #24 or another OL.

    Not sure that Wallace and AJ Green would be a good fit. They would prersent problems but both would want to go deep on every play.
    The Bengals could get scary with Wallace on the field with Green and Shipley. They have two #1's this year, so they wouldn't lose much. The worst thing, IMO, is that Wallace would probably be good for their young locker room.

  6. #6
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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    I can't see the Ravens signing Wallace. They drafted Torrey Smith and he is a similar type of player (not in Wallace's class yet) who showed great potential last year.

    The Bengals might do it. And that would be fine with me. The 21st pick is a good return.

    49ers are a team with a late pick that could use a burner WR (Ginn isn't cutting it and is more of a return guy).

    I don't see the pats giving up a first rounder and paying him top money.
    Even if Bill Belichick was getting an atomic wedgie, his face would look exactly the same.

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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    Quote Originally Posted by NottinghamForest_UK
    If we could get DeCastro for the 21st pick then I'd be tempted!
    DeCastro likely won't be available at #21, but perhaps we could package the #21 pick and our 3rd round pick to get DeCastro instead of packaging the #24 pick and our 2nd round pick.

    Bengals 1st round pick + our 3rd rounder = DeCastro. Gilbert-DeCastro-Pouncey taking care of Ben's blind side makes for a happy, healthy Ben.

    Use #24 pick on Alshon Jeffrey to replace Wallace (totally different type of receiver...big bodied red zone target). Then it would be Brown's job to take the top off the coverage like Wallace used to. Jeffrey would be a bigger version of Hines, Sanders working out of the slot, Haley wants to involve Miller more...although my preference would be to not lose Wallace (and losing him to a division rival would be particularly painful), this wouldn't be a horrible alternate...and if they can convince Cotchery to stay (free agency is before the draft this year, unlike last year with the lockout), even better.

    Then use our 2nd round pick on Alameda Ta'Amu to get Casey's heir apparent.

    On the other hand, if we are going to be able to cover A.J. Green and Mike Wallace twice a year, we might need to use some of these premium picks on a top corner. Ike Taylor gets one of them...would you trust Keenan Lewis, Curtis Brown, Cortez Allen, or William Gay with the other, even with over-the-top safety help? Scary...

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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    Quote Originally Posted by steelblood

    I don't see the pats giving up a first rounder and paying him top money.
    Actually, I think the Pats will make a serious attempt to upgrade the WR position. Branch and Ochocinco are about done, they have two first round picks and plenty of room under the cap. They may back off, however, if they decide to tag Welker.

  9. #9
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    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    STOP READING PRESS CLIPPINGS
    We are talking about the Bengals who have the cheapest owner in the league.
    The Ravens who have double digits free agents on their own team.
    Maybe the Pats, but they themselves won't throw money out that the Steelers can't match never have never will.
    If a team does , those three are at the bottom at doing so.
    Raiders, Skins and Eagles might. But not those three write that down.

  10. #10

    Re: Will Ravens and Bengals pursue Wallace?

    The Ravens are projected to have significant cap room, but Ray Rice (who is currently asking for Adrian Peterson money) could take up a significant portion of that cap room. The Bengals are typically cheap, but of concern is the fact that there will be a minimum salary that goes into effect.

    In the past, the Steelers have erred on the side of giving a higher tender to players they are interested in retaining. Colon and Starks are two that come to mind. I really hope that the Steelers can sign Wallace to a long term deal, but otherwise, a franchise tag is a real possibility.

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