Will the Steelers need Levi Wallace?
The Steelers have a very new cornerback room heading into the season, and while more change isn’t a guarantee, I wouldn’t be shocked to see the team cut Levi Wallace after the preseason. This isn’t any sort of an inditement to Wallace as a player, as he was serviceable as a starter last year even if his best fit seems to be as a quality second or third option for a team.
Patrick Peterson is a lock to start, and while Wallace will begin the offseason as the second option, one has to think that Joey Porter will likely get a shot there sooner than later. With Peterson likely working in the slot, that still makes Wallace a valuable third cornerback that will be needed for this defense.
There are two names that could change that plan though. James Pierre played well enough down the stretch, and while Wallace is the more consistent option, another year with the Steelers could be enough for Pierre to jump him. Add in the special teams value that Pierre has and he has more value than just defensive work for this team.
Cory Trice was only a seventh-round pick, but he has the tape of a better prospect than that. While it is early, he has already made some plays in practice and is getting recognized for his solid effort. He too could jump Wallace if this continues.
What becomes the issue with Wallace is that if he becomes the fourth cornerback, he becomes overpaid and lacks the special teams’ ability to warrant a roster spot. Pierre and Trice have a lot to prove, but if either can take Wallace’s spot, he could be cut at the end of training camp.
The Steelers roster will have a lot of turnover in the offseason, and while the names on this list seem like locks, they could easily be surprise cuts. It will likely take some other events happening, but none of these names are safe for the Steelers as of now.