Steelers likely won’t bring back Levi Wallace
Levi Wallace looked like a sneaky good addition just a season ago. Brought in on a cheap deal, he was set up to be a solid second option in a secondary that had talent elsewhere. He held his end of the bargain, proving to be a good-not-great option in the secondary while compiling a career season statistically.
With the turnover at the cornerback position this offseason, I expected Wallace to be a needed stable face in the cornerback room. Ideally, he would start until Joey Porter was ready and then become a valuable third outside cornerback in dime and nickel defense. While he has kept Porter off the field, his own play has been lackluster.
The weakest link at a position that is struggling as a whole is a bad place to be, and that is just where Wallace finds himself. While he has picked off two passes, he is constantly being picked on by opposing offenses. He is having his worst season since entering the league, and that includes his rookie season where he was forced into a starting role despite being an undrafted free agent.
While far from the only issue, Wallace’s lack of speed has been apparent this season. He misreads a play or gets beat on a play early and can’t recover and stop a small gain from being a big one. His tackling has also regressed, furthering his issues with the team.
With his contract set to expire after this season, I find it hard to imagine the team bringing him back unless he turns his play around. More than likely, this cornerback room is going to be overhauled once again (more on that later). Wallace had a strong start to his Steelers career, but his play this year will likely cause him to find a new home next season.