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Mike Wallace reportedly upset with lack of usage in win

Mike WallaceMike Wallace was upset with his lack of usage in the Miami Dolphins’ 23-10 Week 1 win over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, according to a report.

Wallace, who was signed to a five-year, $60 million deal by the team in free agency, only caught one pass for 15 yards. He was targeted five times and was upset that he was hardly a part of the team’s offensive gameplan.

The Miami Herald’s Armando Salguero says Wallace was escorted off the field in Cleveland by GM Jeff Ireland, and that the receiver was among the first to get dressed and exit the locker room. Salguero also says Wallace was not in the mood to talk after the game.

From Salguero:

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Mike Wallace makes insensitive remarks about Jason Collins coming out as gay

Mike Wallace DolphinsOn Monday, veteran NBA center Jason Collins became the first ever athlete from the four major American team sports to come out as gay, and there has been an outpouring of support since the Sports Illustrated story was released to the public. Everyone from Bill Clinton to Kobe Bryant has endorsed Collins and commended him for his courage. Mike Wallace decided to go in the other direction.

Shortly after the internet began buzzing about Collins, the Miami Dolphins receiver sent the following tweet. He deleted it shortly after it was sent, but the folks at The Big Lead were able to capture it first.

Mike-Wallace-Jason-Collins-tweet

What can we even say at this point? While Wallace’s comment was obviously incredibly idiotic, we know better than to be surprised. Whether it’s an MLB pitcher saying a gay teammate would create awkwardness or a former NFL star saying religion makes it wrong, there are always going to be people who stand in the way.

Naturally, Wallace sent out an apology.

Anyone who believes he’s actually sorry is incredibly naive.

Mike Wallace reportedly turned down more money from Vikings to sign with Dolphins

Mike Wallace DolphinsMike Wallace signed a five-year, $60 million deal with the Miami Dolphins the first day free agency began in the NFL this year. Wallace had long been linked with the Dolphins, so it was no surprise to see him sign with the team. What is somewhat surprising is hearing that he wanted to go to Miami so badly he actually turned down more money from the Vikings.

Wallace’s father spoke with The Miami Herald’s Adam H. Beasley and said Minnesota offered more money to get him.

“The [Vikings] had come to the point where they were telling him, ‘You don’t have to live here, just be here during the season,’ ” Wallace’s father, Mike Jr., told the Herald. “He wanted to get out of that snow and cold weather.”

Wallace’s father also said the Rams and Seahawks were interested. Seattle acquired Percy Harvin in a trade a day before Wallace signed.

For what it’s worth, ESPN 1500′s Tom Pelissero says the Vikings never made a firm offer to Wallace because Miami wrapped him up so quickly. We had heard the Vikings had interest in Wallace, and we know they tried trading for Anquan Boldin and made offers to Greg Jennings, so this report is not too surprising. But this does show us how badly Wallace wanted to be in Miami. The Herald’s article says one of Wallace’s big motivating factors was the weather; he didn’t want to be in the cold. We’ll see if his desire to be in Miami pays off with wins.

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Mike Wallace reportedly agrees to deal with Dolphins

Antonio-Brown-Mike-Wallace-SteelersMike Wallace has agreed to a free agent contract with the Miami Dolphins pending a physical, multiple outlets report.

Wallace’s contract with the team is expected to be for five years. The Sun Sentinel says the contract could be around $13 million per season, though ESPN’s Adam Schefter says it is for $11.5 million per season, making it five years for 57.5 million.

NFL.com’s Jeff Darlington says the deal includes around $30 million guaranteed.

It was reported last week that the Minnesota Vikings and Tennessee Titans would be in on the bidding for Wallace, but FOXSports.com’s Alex Marvez said the Dolphins were the “lead dog” in the hunt for the wide receiver. It looks like he was right.

Wallace is one of the best deep threats in the game and will be an excellent addition for the Dolphins’ offense.

Vikings, Titans expected to pursue Mike Wallace

Mike Wallace is the top free agent wide receiver on the market, and a few teams are expected to pursue him.

The Miami Dolphins have been mentioned as the team expected to make the strongest run at Wallace, but new reports say the Minnesota Vikings and Tennessee Titans will also go after the speedster.

According to NFL.com’s Jeff Darlington, who used to be a beat writer covering the Dolphins, Miami has Wallace at the top of their list. He says the team has about $37 million in salary cap space to make a play for someone like Wallace, who will likely receive a contract similar to the five-year, $55.55 million deal Vincent Jackson got from Tampa Bay last season. Darlington also reports that the Dolphins expect the Vikings to get involved in the bidding for Wallace.

In addition to Miami and Minnesota, SI’s Peter King said Tuesday on “Pro Football Talk” on NBC Sports that the Titans could also be in the mix for Wallace.

The Dolphins make the most sense for Wallace because they have the money and need a vertical threat. The Vikings could also make sense because of their issues with Percy Harvin, who is entering the final year of his contract. The Titans could be growing frustrated with troubled Kenny Britt, and they might not have Jared Cook back next season, so they could also use another receiving threat.

Wallace, a former third-round pick of the Steelers, has registered two 1,000-yard receiving seasons and 32 touchdowns in 63 games. We’re guessing Wallace ends up in Miami because we’re figuring they offer him the most money.

Antonio Brown says it’s a bit awkward that he got a contract and Mike Wallace didn’t

Antonio-Brown-Mike-Wallace-SteelersMike Wallace is one of the best free agents in the NFL this offseason, and there are very few people who feel that he will sign a new deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers. As you know, Wallace held out last year before reporting to camp. He is looking for top dollar, and the Steelers may not be willing to give it to him.

Pittsburgh was, however, willing to throw a large chunk of cash at receiver Antonio Brown last season, signing him to a five-year extension worth $42.5 million. Brown, who has become a more reliable target for Ben Roethlisberger than Wallace, said the fact that he received a contract and Wallace didn’t created a bit of tension last season.

“Some bit of awkwardness,” Brown told 98.7 ESPN in New York. “You know, a guy who has been there longer than I and definitely wanting a deal, but you gotta not dwell on that and that kind of situation prohibits bad blood to a team where guys are there for themselves, and not buy into the team aspects and could definitely cause a drama within a team.”

As we have learned since the start of the offseason, the Steelers had their fair share of locker room issues last year. While it would probably be an exaggeration to say that Brown getting a contract over Wallace contributed to those problems, I’m sure it didn’t help.

That being said, football is a business. The Steelers obviously feel that Brown is reliable and has a bright future, even if his numbers were down in 2012 compared to 2011. Wallace is 26 and Brown is 24. Both are above-average receivers, so Pittsburgh would have to commit quite a bit of its bankroll to keep both. At this point, that seems unlikely.

Thanks to Sports Radio Interviews for the transcription

Mike Wallace: I lose focus sometimes, it’s tough to stay positive

Mike Wallace has had an up-and-down season with the Pittsburgh Steelers this year that has largely been a disappointment. Fresh off an offseason where he held out and missed much of training camp, the fourth-year receiver has been unable to establish any type of consistency. The problem, he says, is his inability to remain focused when the offense isn’t getting him the ball.

“When I don’t get the ball for a certain amount of time, I lose focus sometimes,” he told the Pittsburgh Tribune. “It hurts me when it’s time for me to make a play. The toughest thing is staying positive through three quarters because you’re not going to get the ball every time. You have to be ready to deliver when it comes your way. That’s been the biggest thing I’ve had to learn this year.”

Ben Roethlisberger’s injury has not helped Wallace’s production, but he said the lack of balls coming his way is also due to a change in philosophy.

“We spread the ball around more than we did in the past,” Wallace said. “So it’s not one or two people with yards. Nobody’s numbers just jump out. If there’s been a play that I haven’t made this year, it’s been in the second or third quarter when I haven’t been getting too many passes … and I’m losing focus. I get a little frustrated, and that’s the main thing.”

It’s nice that Wallace is willing to be honest, but that attitude is precisely what separates the great receivers from the rest of the pack in the NFL. Larry Fitzgerald has had one of the worst quarterback situations in the league over the past several seasons, but he seems to maintain focus and continue producing. We know Roethlisberger has shown a serious desire to keep Wallace in Pittsburgh in the past, but its looking more and more like he won’t get his way this offseason.

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