On the day of his retirement, former Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward had some advice for fellow Pittsburgh wideout Mike Wallace, who’s a restricted free agent.
At his retirement news conference Tuesday, Ward said he has urged Mike Wallace to do what he can to remain with the Steelers. “I told Mike you may get a chance to go other places but there’s not another place like Pittsburgh,” Ward said.
The Steelers elected not to use the franchise tag on Wallace this offseason, which will give other teams a crack at signing him. The cost will be high, however, as another team would have to forfeit their first-round pick, so there’s a very good chance Wallace will be back in Pittsburgh this fall.
After that, however, things get dicey, as Wallace will be a free agent, and the Steelers will be unlikely to value him as other teams do — they’ve shown a knack for grabbing good receivers (like Ward and Wallace themselves, who were both drafted in the third round) in the late rounds of the draft. However special a place Pittsburgh might be, there might not be enough money to keep him there beyond 2012. That’s nice of Ward to say, however.
For more on Hines Ward’s retirement, head over to Behind The Steel Curtain.