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Truth about a couple of Mike Wallace myths

Getting my feet back under me after returning from the AFC Championship game, I will be very busy today. Let's start with a little free agency chatter.

In talking to various NFL people the last few days, including some Pittsburgh Steelers folks, I obviously asked about players the Dolphins might be interested in going forward in free agency. This is what I learned about likely free agent wide receiver Mike Wallace and how that lines up with myths we've all heard about him and some of you have posted on this blog:

Myth No. 1 -- Mike Wallace was so disappointing this past season he was benched by coach Mike Tomlin: False. During the week prior to the Dec. 12 game against Baltimore, Tomlin was clearly unhappy with his team's course and the production of some players. And so that week he announced that Wallace and Emmanuel Sanders would be listed as "co-starters" on the depth chart rather than Wallace being the guy. Wallace was coming off a disappointing game against Cleveland and Sanders was in the midst of good season so much was written about the changing of the guard, so to speak. Well on game day, do you know what happened? Wallace started against Baltimore. He was not benched. Wallace actually missed one start during the year -- that in the final week when he played only sparingly against Cleveland. The reason? He was troubled throughout the week with a hip injury and it prevented him from practicing and starting.

[Update: Looked at it further and Wallace actually missed the season-finale because of the injury. But, again, he was not benched.]

Myth No. 2 -- Mike Wallace runs only go-routes: False. While Wallace is primarily a deep threat and has not been used very often in routes across the field, his routes repertoire was expanded this season to allow him to use his world-class speed in other ways. He ran in-cuts and outs. Is he an expert at those routes? No, he probably needs improvement. But is that the best use of one of the NFL's best deep threat receivers? Fair question. Look, Mark Duper didn't run crossing routes. He was a deep threat, down the sideline guy. He averaged a whopping 17.4 yards per catch and 7.7 touchdowns per season over his career. Pretty good right? Wallace has averaged 17.2 yards per catch and 8 touchdowns per season so far. Any questions?

Myth No. 3 -- Mike Wallace drops passes: True. The guy dropped more passes this year than in past years. He dropped four passes in a game against Cincinnati. He blamed the issue on losing focus because the new offense instituted by offensive coordinator Todd Haley didn't always find him early on in games. Wallace said it was tough to play sometimes two or three quarters without a target and suddenly have the ball come to him. Excuse? I think so. On the other hand, name me a receiver that doesn't drop the ball sometimes.

Myth No. 4 -- Mike Wallace only cares about money and will disappear once he gets paid: Hard to be unequivocal here because this involves predicting the future. But I was told the guy is a hard-worker. I was told he is a good guy in the locker room. I was told he "cares about winning." I was told he is "a pleasure to work with." Does that guarantee he won't cruise once he gets paid? No. But he doesn't sound like someone who would be inclined to do that.

BLOG NOTE: Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland is talking to the media at the Senior Bowl today. I will get you an update on what he says later. So make sure to refresh often or come back for the update.

Comments

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Mark, I'm guessing its going to take 10 million minimum and possibly 12 million to get Wallace. I base this on Vincent Jackson getting around 11 million a year last offseason.

yes.
lol.
and in a team sport 1 player does/can/will make a diff.

Clue,

If youve noticed, wr's drafted in 1st-2nd rd arent taking 2-3yrs to develop anymore. Thats info is now "well outdated". College football as become "wing it and sling it" just like its big brother the NFL.

Back in the day, college football was ground and pound. Meaning less pass catch opportunities or nmeed to really refine their route running for college wr's.

Basically, they did not get opportunity to refine their games until reaching the nfl. Dude, college wr's drafted 1st-2nd rd are coming out NFL ready right away because of the now "wing it and sling it" philosophy of college football.

Playoffs 2-4yrs down the road my foot! Catch up with whats now happening in college football. Even high school football programs are now becoming more pass oriented.

These are a "NEW BREED" of wr's now coming into the NFL. At least the one's listed 1st-2nd rd are.

BY the way, Jennings cap # for 2012 was $7M. For $8M, you may be able to get him. This WR buy will be very expensive!!!

Megatrons are for the comsuption of the Mass.

db, there was someone posting as u and he was fighting with everyone.
lol

megatron = 0 sb's.
lol

There are 5 wr's in the draft that are worth taking somewhere in the first two rounds. The problem is they all have question marks and all are considered projects in development which means they won't be an upgrade over what we have now for next season. Are we looking to stay the course or improve the wr corp in the off season?

Analysts are saying they are all mid-round and later round guys who don't possess elite talent, most likely #2 and #3 wrs. That's what we are going to waste a first round pick on?! A #2 wr when we already have one in Hartline?

Texas,

Correct. Wr is at least 3 rds deep this year. Those not aware of this, are those to lazy to research.

They go with popular opinion of those who also fail to research too.

Exactly why I say go after young experienced olinemen( Albert/Levitre) in fa. Then take advantage of the "ABUNDANCE" of very good wr talent in this draft.

4-5yrs now, when many of thes same wr's drafted in 2013 are great, and the Wallace/Jenning types have "FADED". These same people will be b i t c h i n g how we should have drafted wr's in 2013 instead.

YG and I do agree that this draft is pretty deep when it comes to WR. IMO they are 3 rounds deep.

Posted by: Texas_Dolfan | January 22, 2013 at 01:23 PM

Texas, that's what scares me. Along with Philbin's philosophy that you get your WR in the 2nd round. Might miss out on a superior talent and not get the dynamic player we need.

Out of all the WRs you guys mentioned, who's captain of their team, extremely good route-runner, smart (i.e. former H.S. QB type) with great speed?

That's the prototypical Philbin player. That's who I think he'd suggest Ireland take.

The WRs in this years draft are not even close to last years in terms of readiness and size. Swopes is the only one that we could be sure of coming in and immediately contributing. Problem is he's smaller than Hartline.

Contrary to what some may think, going after Wallace and/or Jennings will not hurt this team imo.

Hey Armando,

Re-sign Hartline, Smith and Long
FA sign Jennings, Cook, Levitre and Grimes
Draft
1st round Jordan DE Oregon
2nd round Ertz TE Stanford
2nd round Amerson CB NC State
3rd round Patton WR La Tech
3rd round Bailey OG Arkansas
BA after that, maybe a big RB, secondary depth or OL depth

Playmakers are great but the formula to beat teams like Brady and the Patriots is.... Pressure their QB and protect ours.
All of this of course is based on availability and salary cap but I think it hits on our needs for playmakers, protection and pressure

What do you all think?

NeMO, good catch. That's even more recent than the Rice signing. Whether Wallace is a good as jackson is very debateable but he isn't too far behind. And VJax's cap # for 2012???

$15,432,000

Chew on that ...

So Wallace would definitely eb north of $10M - no doubt about and $12M is probably within reach as NeMo pointed out.

FA is a really difficult period for fans to predict who goes where, purely due to the unpredictable nature of negotiations along with unexpected player demands. It is very important that we get a couple(maybe more) of quality FA's whether it be pass rush/wr/te/cb etc to at least give the team a lift. Just read some of JI transcript and at least he is talking about how important this off season is. Which in my mind means he himself is saying if i miss on this i'm out of a job. I have enough confidence in the FO to think they will do a good job in acquiring the right pieces to help this team NOW and in future years.

We Posters here in this Blog are suppossed to be connoisseuers of the Game of American Football. We want nobody here spouting crap heard in the General Media. If you are going to copy somebody, copy me, YG.

Phony78,

Which of the 3 most mentioned fa wr's also doesnt come with "? marks" too? Quick, name one genius.

Whaty an idiot, glad youre never be our gm, I would immediately stopped being a dolfan until youre fired. Which, btw, should only be 1 short season after we're 0-16 under your cumsoaked hands.

DC - To be honest if I was doing the picking and Mingo, Jordan and Patterson are all there at 12 I would have a hard time chosing but in the end in that scenario I go with Patterson. Scoring points will have to come first IMO in this draft. I hope it does.

Plus there is always guys like Datone Jones and Quanterus Smith that can be had in the 2nd.

Posted by: DC Dolfan | January 22, 2013 at 01:38 PM

Jesus Christ, man. Can you at least give chance for the draft top play out before getting scared? I would never want a gm that puts together a roster "out of fear".

That's a gm who wont have a job for very long.

Mark I agree, I just don't see any WRs in the draft that would actually upgrade our corp. The guy they are saying we should take is Patterson. They are also calling him EXTREMELY RAW. I'm sick of having to take these players because we have a need at a position. If the guy doesn't fit the pick slot than take someone who does! Enough with this 'well maybe he will work out in a couple of years, we need guys now.

If we have to break the bank on Wallace then no deal. I wouldn't mind grabbing Jennings, a CB (Milliner if available) with our 1st pick and then steal Zach Ertz with our second pick. Our second (second rounder) can be used on a wr that falls to that spot and then we won't have to worry about his development. He can take his time getting acclimated because we will be all set on offense.

Jennings
Hartline
Bess
Binns
Matthews/or whomever we draft (Swopes is smaller but has chemistry with Tannehill and would be a great situation guy in the spread for his first season).

Ertz
Fasano

This would be just fine with me

Few920 says:
Playmakers are great but the formula to beat teams like Brady and the Patriots is.... Pressure their QB and protect ours.
=====================================================
Well yeah that formula worked great for Bill Parcells. Build from the inside! Look where it got the Dolphins. They need playmakers! Draft Wallace and in the first round another speed receiver. Receivers do take a while to develop. Moreover get Dustin Keller in Free Agency. This is the era of 4 Wr sets and athletic tight ends. With the current NFL rules building an offense is paramount. The Patriots lost two CB's in the AFC championship game therefore could not defend the pass. Talib is a shut down CB who pulled a hamstring. Unless you have someone like him or Revis the offense will dominate with the rules in the NFL.

After watching the playoffs, it seems even more clear that the major weakness of the Dolphins is personnel management. In short, years of bad drafting and free agent signings have consistently left the Dolphins with few playmakers, subpar supporting talent, and a team that is mis-built. For many years, including recently, the Dolphins passed on selecting talented prospects at the QB, WR, and TE positions. Even worse, the over-investment in the OL did not result in an elite unit. Picks were wasted left and right. Yes, they finally drafted Tannehill who is a major work-in-progress, all the more so given the lack of talent at WR and TE.

Having a good punter, an above average center is not going to win as many games as having an elite QB. The Dolphins are in year SIX of a rebuilding project. They do not seem close to being a top eight team.

Why would an elite free agent WR want to come here? Other teams can offer similar money and superior QB play.

The Dolphins do have some good talent - Wake, Pouncey, Jones, Starks, and perhaps a few others. However, the Dolphins have a horrid offense that cannot effectively pass, run, or score. They cannot stop the pass and are very inconsistent against the run. The Dolphins are good at punting the ball, so there is that.

After over a decade of losing, they should have better talent. They should have something more than a major project playing QB. They should have a wonderful OL given the attention placed in that unit by both Parcells and Ireland. They should have one elite TE and not Egnew. They should have better players at WR.

They should have great players at CB given the draft picks used and free agents signed to this position.

They should have picked Ryan, Dalton, Kaepernick, or Wilson. In short, they should have a much better team going into 2013. Instead, it looks as if the rebuild could easily go to year eight at this point.

Steadman "Biletnikoff" Bailey is NFL ready, but we don't need him, he's a slot Man.

We need to double down sign one and draft one

We do need him oscar

Swopes? Isnt he a white WR?? Please no more white WR's they arent difference makers at the position.

"I stopped reading after 8 TDs per year... Sign the guy!

"

Thats why im puzzled people want to let Reggie bush walk.Hes good for 1300 yards and 8 td's a season and is only 26 or 27"

Of course, if you are going to draft WRs and expect them to be NFL ready, you might find them easier at Schools that use Pro sets.

I BEEN ON THE MIKE WALLACE BANDWAGON SINCE LAST YEAR WHEN STEELERS REFUSED TO PAY HIM. FORGET THE COST AND HERE IS WHY. A BONA FIDE DEEP THREAT OPENS UP THE ENTIRE OFFENSE, WR,TE, RB. HINES WARD WAS A 1000 YD RECEIVER BEFORE AND BECAME BETTER ONCE WALLACE BECAME A TEAMMATE.LOOK AT HEATH MILLER HE IS GOOD BECAUSE ALL THE ATTENTION IS ON THE OTHER SPEED RECEIVERS. WALLACE WILL MAKE HARTLINE AND BUSH NUMBERS IMPROVE GREATLY. THE TEAM WOULD ONLY NEED A GOOD TIGHT END AND ANOTHER SPEED RECEIVER IN THE DRAFT. FORGET JENNINGS HE HAS LOST A STEP AND INJURY PRONE. HISTORY SHOWS THAT WHENEVER THE DOLPHINS HAVE HAD THAT HOMERUN THREAT ON THE OUTSIDE THEY HAVE MADE THE PLAYOFFS AND SUPER BOWL.(WARFIELD,HARRIS,DUPER) THEIR PLAY HELPED THE OTHER RECEIVERS THEY PLAYED WITH TO IMPROVE (TWILLEY,MOORE,CLAYTON). THE REASON THE DOLPHINS COULD NOT WIN WITH BRANDON MARSHALL IS BECAUSE HE COULD NOT GET ENOUGH SEPARATION FROM DB. HARTLINE GETS SEPARATION AND BUSH STILL MAKES LONG RUNS, ADD WALLACE AND A SPEED RECEIVER IN THE DRAFT AND WATCH THIS TEAM BARRING INJURIES WIN 10 GAMES EASY. REMEMBER THIS YEAR WITH LACK OF WEAPONS AND A BU..SH.T KICKER WE STILL COULD HAVE WON 10 GAMES. PAY THE MAN 10MILLION SO WHAT HE BRINGS AN ELEMENT TO THE TEAM WE NEED SPEED!! CUT SOME PORK OFF THE TEAM TO GIVE YOU THE EXTRA 2-3 MILLION TO KEEP YOUR BEST AND SIGN THE BEST. FORGET DROP PASSES,GET SOMEONE TO HELP SCORE SOME F..K..G POINTS AND YOU WANT KEEP BEING 7-9.

Here is a dose of National Media Reality and Miami fan typicality...

"If".... Wallace goes to a team like Denver, Seattle, New Yawk's Jests or Dallas.... It will be the greatest acquisition of the off-season. National Media will fall over themselves "GUSHING PRAISES" about threat threat and speed Wallace brings to his new team... Miami fans will burn Ireland, Ross & Philbin in effigy for failing to land him..

"If".... Wallace is acquired by Miami, it will be seen as a needed but questionable acquisition by the National Media. They will point out such mundane and "Also Ran" facts about Wallace, and speculate whether or not his skill set REALLY offers the young Tannehill the help he needs... Local Media will waver and wobble about Wallace and his recent bouts with the dropsies... They will pan the contract amount, wondering why we would release Marshall and HIS demobilizing contract only to fill the position a year later with an equally questionable presence. Regardless of that being true or not...

No matter what.... We don't get him... BAD... We do get him.... BAD.... and not only this player... but Global Warming, Extremist Muslim Terrorism, Super Fund Toxic Clean-Up failures, The One armed man, The Second Man on the grassy Knoll, The Titanic steaming too fast for conditions, The Hindenburg Tragedy, WW1/WW2/Nuclear Proliferation/Korea/Vietnam/Grenada/Panama/ Gulf War 1/ Gulf War 2/ Afghanistan, Somalia/Black Hawk Down... Anna Nicole Smith's death, Micheal Jackson' Death/ Columbine/ Virginia Tech/ Aurora Theater 16 shooting/ Sandy Hill Elementary/ Obrozo's Re-Election and the Designated Hitter will all be blamed on Jeff Ireland.......

ppl are forgettin that bowe jennings n wallace all had down years so to speak. and My not command or justify them wanting big 8-10mill a year

does anyone think that any of the big 3 wideouts will actually want to sign here? unproven qb, nutty owner, hated gm, bad ol, and pats!

does anyone think that any of the big 3 wideouts will actually want to sign here? unproven qb, nutty owner, hated gm, bad ol, and pats!

Posted by: Stevet | January 22, 2013 at 05:05 PM
-----------------------------------------------

Yep... Only people who are questioning RT17 are local clowns and haters... Ross has been nothing but solid since his first 2 years of owner boot camp when he made his blunders, What makes you think Ireland is hated by everyone? Someone TOLD you... This is a league of professionals... Not babies like you holding grudges...
AS far as the O-line goes...Mike Pouncey 1 vote shy of Pro Bowl (It went to his brother), Richie Incognito, Pro Bowl, Martin, had a solid Rookie showing, I'd say its 70/30 For concerning Jake Longs return. He had a bad year but still would have gone to pro bowl if not injured. At 80% JL is better then all but 4 LT's in the NFL. Miami's O-Line Coach (Jim Turner) is one of the most respected in the AFC. All this team needs at the OL is another Guard (they certainly have the money and picks for that..!!!) and a little time to play together, Sparano moved them around more then Old Black Men Move checkers...
As far as the Patsy's.... Yeah... Good Team. There are good teams in EVERY Division... Moron. Think Players care?
Go back to sniffing some Sancheezy or Brady azzzz....

Breezy. U show how stupid u r. They had a players poll last yr and ur butt buddy ireland was voted the worst. Wake up loser boy and see the facts in front of u

As a Steeler fan I can offer several things about Wallace.

If he's not wide open he probably won't catch it. He does not go up and fight for a ball.

He does not comeback towards the QB to make a catch when the situation calls for him to do so. Look at the end of the last Superbowl against the Packers. He waits for the ball to come to him.

Losing focus? he was the most targeted receiver for the Steelers this year. He has great speed and potential but his production is falling for the last 2 years.

Wallace = Duper ?
A.J. Green = Clayton?
Both ..... Dalton = Never be Like Marino

The guy Is a playmaker. What we need.

Wallace's big problem is that he *thinks* a receiver's only duty is to run a route and to catch the ball only if it's thrown to him. It's rare that he makes a tough catch...one that he has to reach or stretch for...he's a horrible downfield blocker and, finally, if any ball is intercepted near him, he could care less...

Deep Threat: Brian Hartline has speed and gets open deep downfield, problem is that Tannehill over threw him a bunch this past season and the staff has him run other routes underneath instead of going deep. While Ginn was here, he was also being made to run short routes when his skill set was to burn and get deep which hardly ever happened. Work to what a guy does best, don't try and change him.

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