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Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – C/G Cody Wallace


End-of-season player exit meetings are not something that we are often privy to as outsiders of the football world. Generally, we only get a glimpse into that world when a player is asked by a reporter how the meeting went, if the player is willing to discuss it.

Still, it’s not generally a hard concept to grasp, and we have a pretty good feel by now of how Mike Tomlin and his staff likes to operate, and we see all the game film, so it’s not an overly difficult project to simulate. If we were to administer the end-of-season player exit meetings, it might go something like this.

Player: Cody Wallace

Position: Center/Guard

Experience: 6 Years

Despite having been drafted in the fourth round in 2008, journeyman interior offensive lineman Cody Wallace had only played about 15 snaps in the first five seasons of his NFL career. That workload changed substantially in 2013 in his first year with the Pittsburgh Steelers, during which he made the first four starts of his career.

Wallace actually saw his first action of the season in Oakland during the eighth week of the season in a game involving a litany of offensive line injuries.

If memory serves, at one point Wallace was asked to switch from left guard—replacing Guy Whimper, who had replaced Ramon Foster—to right guard in order to replace David DeCastro. Kelvin Beachum moved from left tackle to left guard and Mike Adams moved from tight end to left tackle.

Not surprisingly, that combination led to Ben Roethlisberger getting sacked five times on the afternoon. Don’t blame it on Wallace, however, who did well in pass protection, but was beat at times in the running game.

When Fernando Velasco tore his Achilles against the Baltimore Ravens, the team had to turn to Wallace to man the center position, a player with no starting experience and who hadn’t even been with the team in training camp. And there was still a quarter of a season left to play.

But after some growing pains, which included being penalized five times during his first two starts, twice for improperly shifting the ball, Wallace settled down admirably. His performance in the final two weeks of the season in particular was impressive given the circumstance of being the team’s fourth option at center.

Of particular note, and actually quite a surprise, is the demeanor with which Wallace carried himself on the field. He played with a level of aggression and nastiness that might seem ill-fitting for a player of such little experience.

But then you have to remember that while Wallace hasn’t had much in-game regular season experience, he has been in the league for six years now, and is a 29-year-old man. He’s been around the block. He didn’t need to prove to himself that he belongs, and he made sure others learned the same thing.

If little else, Wallace used the 2013 season to prove that he can be an asset to a team in need of interior offensive line depth. He can come in at three positions if there’s an in-game injury, or he can be called upon to start for a stretch if need be. He certainly raised both his profile and his value this past December, and I would imagine that the Steelers would like to retain him, and Velasco as well, if possible.

Previous Articles In This Series
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – QB Ben Roethlisberger
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – WR Antonio Brown
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – WR Emmanuel Sanders
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – TE Heath Miller
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – T Marcus Gilbert
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – G David DeCastro
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – G Ramon Foster
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – T Kelvin Beachum
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – RB Le’Veon Bell
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – C Fernando Velasco
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – FB Will Johnson
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – DE Brett Keisel
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – NT Steve McLendon
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – DE Cameron Heyward
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – OLB LaMarr Woodley
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – OLB Jason Worilds
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – ILB Lawrence Timmons
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – ILB Vince Williams
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – CB Ike Taylor
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – CB William Gay
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – S Troy Polamalu
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – S Ryan Clark
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – WR Jerricho Cotchery
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – RB Jonathan Dwyer
Steelers End Of Season Player Exit Meetings – QB Bruce Gradkowski

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About Matthew Marczi

Passionate Steelers fan with a bit of writing ability. Connoisseur of loud music. Follow me on Twitter @mmarczi.
  • Shea Fahr

    Wallace is also the healthiest center out of the 3 right now so it would certainly be good to retain him.

  • Rob H

    Obviously LOVE his attitude, has position flexibility, can be had for cheap, my only question is why would you not want to resign this guy.

  • steeltown

    Indeed. They’d be wise to get this guy locked up.

  • joed32

    I remember everyone laughing when they signed him, turned out to be pretty good.

  • SteelersDepot

    Everyone?

  • 20Stoney

    Agree 100 percent. And hopefully a little of his tenacity will rub off on a few of our other linemen.

  • Michael Pearce

    I hope we resign him and Velasco. They were both great when needed to be, and in the end I actually started liking Wallace more because of his nastiness.

  • Jollyrob68

    I want him Re-signed.

  • joed32

    I’m active on several Steeler boards and it was close to unanimous with people saying “Who?”. Maybe you knew he was going to be good but most of us didn’t.

  • Matt Manzo

    Ya! I think this is as important, maybe a little more, than Worilds. His attitude and improvement during our push to the end is something our team needs. We’ve been longing for the return of the Essex type players on the OL!

  • shawn

    definitely locked up for a couple years at least

  • Matthew Marczi

    I’ll readily admit that I didn’t understand the move when they signed him and released John Malecki. I thought Malecki had a good preseason, and I didn’t know anything about Wallace at the time.

  • Steve

    Would be wise to wait until after the draft to sign a backup, then we could get Cody at the Vet Minimum.

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