There certainly is a whole lot of edification going on down in South Beach these days as new Miami Dolphins wide receiver, and former member of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Mike Wallace has recently stated that his new quarterback Ryan Tannehill will be “great.”
“Ryan can really fling it,” Wallace said, via a report by Chris Perkins in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “I think from a deep ball perspective Ryan may be able to throw the ball a little bit farther than Ben Roethlisberger.
“Obviously, Ben is more experienced in a game-time situation, but the way it\’s going it won\’t take long for him to be one of the great quarterbacks at all.”
Wallace praising his new quarterback certainly isn\’t unexpected and just last week it was Tannehill praising the speed of the Steelers former third-round draft pick.
“Everything I heard about him coming in has proved to be true – he’s as advertised,” Tannehill told the Miami Herald. “He’s the fastest guy I’ve ever thrown to. It’s exciting.”
During his four years in Pittsburgh, Wallace caught 29 passes thrown more than 30 yards past the line of scrimmage for 1,418 yards and 17 touchdowns. During those same four seasons, Roethlisberger was 31-of-89 (34.9%) passing for 1,496 yards with 17 touchdowns and 5 interceptions on passes thrown more than 30 yards down the field.
As far as Tannehill goes with his deep ball, he was 4-of-17 (23.6%) for 213 yards with one touchdown and one interception on passes thrown more than 30 yards down the field during his rookie season.
Sure, Tannehill might indeed have a stronger arm than Roethlisberger right now, as after all, he is seven years younger the 31 year-old Steelers quarterback. Just because he can throw it far, however, doesn\’t mean that he will be accurate with those throws. We\’ll see.
2013 will be a real test for both Tannehill and Wallace to see if they can reproduce the same magic that the Mississippi product had in Pittsburgh with Roethlisberger. Wallace is coming off of a very disappointing 2012 season that included him registering several drops and losing focus more than once in the new offense implemented by offensive coordinator Todd Haley.
As far as the comments made by Wallace go, I don\’t think that he meant them to be disrespectful to his former quarterback at all. Instead, I really think that this is just another case of a player speaking without thinking about the words that are coming out of his mouth and how several will try to interpret them.
The Dolphins signed Wallace to a five-year, $60 million contract that included $30 million in guarantees at the start of free agency and for that price, he better be just more than fast and a receiver that can only catch the deep ball. In addition, $60 million ought to buy a player that his respectful and full of praise for his current quarterback and that\’s exactly what Wallace verbalized with his comments.