Cody Wallace, Ike Taylor Receive Top Grades From PFF For Win Over Packers

Pro Football Focus now has their grades up for the Pittsburgh Steelers following their 38-31 win over the Green Bay Packers and the top two players are sure to surprise you.

On offense, center Cody Wallace leads the way with a 2.5 grade. It was his third straight start and easily his best performance of the three. Not surprisingly, wide receiver Antonio Brown (1.6) and guards David DeCastro (1.6) and Ramon Foster (1.6) round out the top grades on offense.

On the bottom of the offense grades are running back Le’Veon Bell (-1.8) and tight end Matt Spaeth (-1.5). Bell, who had his first 100 yard game of his career, obviously graded low because of two drops and a fumble. It just goes to show you that the PFF grading system needs tweaking when it comes to skill positions.

Defensively, cornerback Ike Taylor leads the way with a 2.3 grade. Taylor, who covered Packers wide receiver James Jones a lot on Sunday, allowed just three catches in the game for 14 yards on six targets. The veteran also had a few solid open field tackles in addition. Safety Troy Polamalu (1.8) also had a solid game in the eyes of PFF.

Grading on the bottom this week for the Steelers were defensive ends Brett Keisel (-2.9) and Cameron Heyward (-3.2). As I noted after the game, Keisel was on the ground quite a bit in the game and ineffective against the run as a result. Also not grading out well was Chris Carter (-2.8) and that is not surprising at all if you watched the game.

Next up for the Steelers are the Cleveland Browns as the two teams will square off Sunday at Heinz Field.

  • dgh57

    That explains the Bells good day along with only giving up one sack. The OL also played every snap! Much improvement since the start of the year!

  • HopalongCassidy

    Wallace seems to play with an attitude. Maybe all this guy needed was a chance to play.

  • Kenneth Wilt

    Wallace has played pretty well. Totally surprised me. Maybe he truly was a good signing. I do think the Pouncey and Velasco injuries coupled with finding Beachum at LT, could really mean that we aren’t out there looking for OL help this offseason.

  • Jollyrob68

    They need to sign him to a 2 or 3 yr contract to backup Pouncey or even replace him.

  • steeltown

    Wallace and Embernate… that’s some nasty depth

  • John A Stewart

    Wallace brings a attitude to the line which we sorely need. I really wish the Steeler’s moved Pouncey to guard and leave Wallace at center.

  • Alan Felicia

    Really? You want to replace a 3-time ALL-Pro and perhaps the best Center in The NFL with a journeyman Guard in Wallace who’s with his seventh team since 2008.

  • Kevin artis

    I agree. I’ve read alot of people want to throw Pouncey out with the bath water or move him to another position. You keep Pouncey at center, move Velesco at guard and make Wallace your backup center. Now, that depends if Pouncey and Velesco comes back healthy.

  • chris ward

    PFF got it right on Ike Taylor, I thought he played a solid game and had some nice open field tackles.

  • Elijah Stevenson

    Cameron Heyward a -3.2 that’s stupid and give Keisal a break

  • Elijah Stevenson

    Antonio Brown grade should be higher he came to play Sunday where he had over 105 yards in the game and he’s Ben’s #1 target

  • Elijah Stevenson

    Man Carter’s performance was so low his grade should b a -300

  • joed32

    Not to replace him but they should sign Campbell for depth. Velasco might get a good deal as an FA

  • cencalsteeler

    I liked the play where the Packers got a 15 yd penalty for pushing after the play. After watching the replay, Wallace clearly instigated the foul, pushing the defenders helmet and the Packers retaliated and got caught.

  • Alan Felicia

    Its a shame that not a lot of credit is being given to two player that have helped (or lead) the improvement of the O-Line in the past 6 games: David Decastro and Ramon Foster. This offensive line have only given up 6 sacks since Week 10 including games against teams ranked in the top 10 in total sacks: Cleveland (4th), Baltimore (4th), Green Bay (8th), and Miami (1st). IMHO, Foster and Decastro have been the Rock on this line that faced challenges all season including injuries to the Center position, shuffling of players at LT, and, of course, adapting to a new zone blocking scheme.

  • pittsburghjoe

    Pouncey is the most overrated lineman in the NFL. 2 guys off of the street have come in and performed in a solid manner. I do not see a pressing need to resign him when his contract expires. His replacements have proved he is easily replaceable.

  • Bob Loblaw

    Let’s be realistic, I love Kiesel but he looked really poor in run defense that game.

  • GH05T

    i wonder if c. wallace could make the transition to long snapper greg warren is still doing well but if they can use wallace as the long snapper and as backup for pouncy i feel it would be a plus for depth as well as the cap situation

  • pittsburghjoe

    I would!! He has already been very effectively replaced by 2 guys off of the street. Can you say over rated?

  • Don2727

    Way to go Cody Wallace..Pretty amazing to have their third center of the season playing this good..

  • Alan Felicia

    Right, a journeyman who was released by 6 other teams and Velasco who was beat out by a rookie. Thank god you’re not the General Manager.

  • HopalongCassidy

    You’re living off of the rookie hype for Pouncey. He is not and has not been the best Center in the NFL. If Velasco and Wallace can do a suitable job at Center, Pouncey might be more valuable at Guard where his quickness would be an asset. His durability is still a question though. Foster is slow and doesn’t pull well so someone quicker may help the run game.

  • CrazyTerry

    I don’t know what they graded Allen at, but a pick 6 goes a long way to forgiving some passes given up.

  • HopalongCassidy

    Keisel is still not 100% I suspect.

  • John A Stewart

    Not for nothing but I think Pouncey ‘s brother is better than him.

  • John A Stewart

    yes sirrrrrrrrrr

  • John A Stewart

    well said Cass

  • pittsburghjoe

    What part of effectively replaced by two bums off the street do you not understand. You don’t need to be a GM to see can be easily replaced? TWO NO NAMES are doing his job just fine. I think its time to move on from the overrated guy.

  • pittsburghjoe

    I think this shows that Pouncey is not that important to their success. He has been easily replaced.

  • Ron

    Good call! Pouncy’ athleticism could be put to good use pulling from left guard. Wallace and Velasco can be affordable players at center and back up center. Foster can be good depth at guard. I would also like to see Adams replace Gilbert if Beachum stays at LT. Gilbert gets pushed around too much.

  • pittsburghjoe

    How can you count on Embernate? He has not proved one thing in the NFL? I hope he works out, but we have nothing to go on.

  • Steeler Wheeler

    Team needs 53 players capable of ‘earning’ and NFL roster spot before ever considering that. Paulson, Palmer, Carter, and a host of other LB, all of the DB’s who didn’t play, Whimper, they still carrying that 5th TE? Lot of guys getting paid for nothing, worst depth I’ve ever seen on a Steeler squad.

  • bonairsfavoriteson

    If anything good came out of this season, I would have to think that signing Fernando Velasco and Cody Wallace were it. As well as some young guys getting a chance to play because of necessity. Now lets see if the Steelers are smart enough to keep them.