Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Wallace (WR)- Pittsburgh Steelers
Recording under 1,000 receiving yards for the first time in two seasons isn't the way Mike Wallace was planning to prove that he is ready for the big money.
Heading into 2012, he was humbled into accepting a one-year, $2.7 million restricted-free-agent tender offered by his current team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, after a lengthy holdout.
Wallace borders on having too much attitude to be worthwhile, but his abilities are undeniable. Twenty-six touchdowns since 2009 is an impressive number.
Through his first three campaigns, No. 17 only dropped 2.9 percent of targeted passes and never more than four passes in a single season.
That type of reliability is exactly what many teams, including the Browns, are looking for. It makes Wallace a legitimate first or second target for any quarterback.
However, this Cleveland team must stay well clear of the Wallace sweepstakes.
Not because the talent isn't real, but that he would take away substantial in-game development opportunities from rising stars Josh Gordon and Greg Little.
The youthful duo combined for 103 catches and nine scores this past year. They don't need the Los Angeles-born wide receiver's ego negatively influencing them, either.
Reportedly wanting to exceed Larry Fitzgerald's contract (8-year, $50 million guaranteed, $120 million extension) is absurd and another reason to not entertain the thought of this free agent.
The $48.9 million in salary cap space makes it an exciting thought for the Browns to throw around money at all the biggest names.
This braintrust led by Joe Banner must aim for the best team fit, while also not being afraid to open up the wallet and go after someone they feel will be a valuable asset.
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