Written by Matthew Cannata
When the Miami Dolphins signed wide receiver Mike Wallace to a five-year contract worth $60 million dollars, many expected him to come in right away and change the entire offense, making it one of the most explosive ones in the league. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen and many became upset at the lack of production.
While it is true that he did open up the entire offense, which resulted in more opportunities for others on the team such as Brian Hartline and Charles Clay, it seemed as if quarterback Ryan Tannehill and Wallace couldn’t connect when it mattered most.
That’s why he is looking to get back to the point that he was prior to coming to the Dolphins – an explosive playmaker who can make a difference at any point the game. He started by staying on the field after offseason practices catching passes from the Jugs machine long after the team left the field because he needed to regain his edge.
“Obviously, I didn’t have the kind of year I want to have,” he said. “But that’s just the type of player I am. I’ve always been a hard-working player, whether some people believe it or not. I didn’t get here just by getting here. I work hard. You can never get complacent. I always stay on the grind, never forget what it took to get here. Every single day, I’m going to keep working hard trying to get the edge.”
When Wallace talks about his 2013 season, he’s quick to mention the fact he wasn’t able to add to his total of two 1,000-yard seasons. He also believes there are a couple of reasons he should be more productive in 2014, mainly due to the fact that he’s more comfortable with Tannehill and also because of the new offense under Bill Lazor.
“Nobody can ever key on me,” he said. “Last year, you kind of knew where I was every single play, what you had to do because I was there every game, same spot. Moving around, it’s harder for the defense to know where you’re at, harder for them to adjust. I think it just makes coming to work easier, more fun for you when you know you can move around and do different things that, my whole career, I had never really done. It’s a fresh opportunity every day.”
Many expect Wallace to have a bounce back year in his second season with the Dolphins. If he does, then the Dolphins can truly have one of the most explosive offenses in the league.