Over the past several weeks since the Miami Dolphins' season finale against the New York Jets where Mike Wallace quit on the team, many things have been said that both support him and go against him.
People talked about his great work ethic, his ability (or lack of) to properly communicate with teammates and coaches, his past behavior, his ability to stretch the field and so much more. No one talked about his mental toughness though. That is, until a veteran member of the New England Patriots stopped Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald to talk about how mentally week Wallace is.
"To me, that's mental toughness," the un-named player said to Salguero. "When things ain't going your way you got two choices in my mind. You can bow up and get tougher and fight through to try to change the situation. Or you can complain. Even if you got cause and complaining is what most people would do, if you take that road that makes you mentally weak in my book. This team here, the men in this room are some of the most mentally tough [expletives] I've been around. They don't bitch. They don't quit. They just work."
Salguero asked this player if it's easier to be mentally tough when things are going well and a player is on a winning team. This player shot right back and said that the Patriots have had their share of rough patches in the road but have always found a way to stick together.
"You must not of known about how we started the year," this Patriot said. "We [were] not a good team then. The Dolphins kicked our behinds. The Chiefs kicked our behinds. But we put our nose to the grind. We put our heads down. We worked. We focused on what we had to do to make it right. Nobody was happy. Nobody. But nobody complained. We worked. We didn't blame coaches. We didn't blame each other. We didn't say [expletive]. Every man did his job."
Several weeks ago, I wrote a column about how Wallace exacted the same way with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Now, we are seeing how other players around the league view him besides the current members of the Dolphins. It seems that the writing is on the wall for a break-up and in my opinion, it's the best thing that could happen for this team.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs
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