Pittsburgh Steelers: Could Mike Wallace Replace Santonio Holmes?

TJ JenkinsAnalyst IApril 11, 2010

PITTSBURGH - DECEMBER 27:  Santonio Holmes #10 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates a second quarter touchdown with Mike Wallace #17 while playing the Baltimore Ravens on December 27, 2009 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

With Santonio Holmes latest two legal incidents still under the NFL microscope, one member of the Pittsburgh Steelers has a chance to step up big time and knock the former Ohio State receiver back to the ground.

His name?

Mike Wallace.

With talks of Holmes facing a NFL imposed suspension and possibly a Rooney imposed one, the second year receiver out of Ole Miss can show us something we caught a glimpse of last year.

He could absolutely light it up and be the No. 2 receiver for the 2010-2011 season.

Sure, Holmes along with Ben Roethlisberger were the heroes of Super Bowl XLIII. However, the NFL is a job where the phrase "What have you done for me lately?" is known all too well by both players and coaches.

Let’s take a look.

What has Holmes done lately? Nothing besides tell a fan to go kill himself and propose that he partake in a "wake and bake."

Wallace, on the other hand, has kept his nose clean and even attended the Strong Girls Mentoring program with teammates.

I’ve been a supporter of Mike Wallace since his first professional reception. The fact that he caught the game winning pass against the Green Bay Packers was just icing on the cake.

Compare their rookie seasons.

Holmes had only 10 more catches than Wallace in his first year, but six fewer touchdowns. Sure he got the touches and the yards, but didn’t really have a nose for the end zone. Whereas Wallace showed that he was not only a deep threat, but also one that could hang onto the tough catches. Something that’s bothered me about Holmes.

I wouldn’t flinch if Holmes was suspended for the first four games of the season because realistically, he could be benching himself for longer in favor of the quiet, professional Wallace. And would that be so bad?

Just imagine, it’s third and 12. Roethlisberger’s under center, Ward to the right, Wallace to the left.

Our quarterback is flushed from the pocket and delivers a strike on a post route to No. 17. Wallace has the mental toughness to secure the ball before looking up-field.

Does Holmes?

I’ve kept quiet on the Roethlisberger situation simply because there is no tangible evidence for me to look over and make my own decision.

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With Holmes, that isn’t the case.

I can easily view the Tweets he made and certainly would support a suspension without pay for the receiver that’s allowed a 1,000 yard season and Super Bowl MVP go to his head.

As far as ridding the team of Holmes, I’m not for it. It’s just not practical. He is a productive player when his head’s in the game. A suspension could scare him into walking the straight and narrow.

Two receivers, one spot opposite Hines Ward. Who’s going to win the battle not only on, but off of the field?

Only time will tell.