Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Mike Wallace was absent for all of training camp last year due to his unhappiness with his contract situation. During his time away from the team the Steelers gave fellow wide receiver Antonio Brown an extension that included an 8.5 million signing bonus.
Brown was asked last Wednesday on 98.7 ESPN Radio New York if there was any awkwardness between he and Wallace in the locker room last season because he was the receiver that received the new contract.
“Some bit of awkwardness,” said Brown. “You know, a guy who had 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.”
It is not surprising that there might have been some awkwardness between the two. How could there not be? Wallace made his decision early on and the Steelers had to move on with their business. They locked up Brown, who was entering the final year of his rookie contract, at a great price and Wallace finally succumbed to signing his $2.742 million restricted tender with the hopes of hitting the market this offseason as an unrestricted free agent.
Wallace is now just a few weeks away now from the start of the free agency signing period and he figures to get a lot more guaranteed money than he would have received from the Steelers. The Miami Dolphins are rumored to be a team that is very interested in his services so the Steelers former third-round draft pick will likely be able to afford to pay someone very soon to be awkward for him.
You can listen to the full audio of the Brown interview below Ryan Ruocco and Stephen A. Smith