By Yvette James // @lissalisa29
My Baltimore Ravens player spotlight is WR Mike Wallace who is in his second year with the team. I have followed him even though he played for one of our rivals, The Pittsburgh Steelers. He was one of my favorite players in the NFL – whenever we played the Steelers he would burn whomever had to defend him.
Mike Wallace was born on August 1,1986 to the proud parents Brunel and Sonjia Wallace in New Orleans, Louisiana. He played football at an early age at O. Perry Walker High School where he played on both sides of the ball. His senior year was the most successful year where he received first team All-State honors. Having caught 60 passes for 1,039 yards with 19 touchdowns, He also was a standout track and field athlete in high school where he was rated as a two-star recruit by rivals.com.
After having accepted a scholarship from Oregon State, he decided to attend The University of Mississippi where he had an outstanding college career. In each of his games he ran for over 30 yards or more. He ranked first in the SEC in yards per catch in 2007. In his four years at Ole Miss he played in at least 10 or more games and has had two 100 yard games.
In 2009 Wallace was selected by the Steelers in the NFL draft where he played until the end of the 2013. Having a stellar rookie season with his first 100 yard receiving game, he finished the year leading the entire league in average yards per reception. In 2010 he moved into the #2 receiver spot with another stellar season.
In 2011 Wallace was selected to the Pro Bowl representing the AFC while finishing the season with 1,193 receiving yards. At the end of the 2012 season Wallace became a free agent. In 2013 the Miami Dolphins signed him to a five year deal. After two season with the Dolphins he was traded to the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for a fifth round pick in the 2015 draft. During his time with the Vikings he had the lowest production of his entire professional career.
On March 8th, 2016 he was released by the Vikings, which was a blessing to us, The Baltimore Ravens because on March 15, 2016 Wallace signed a two year contract and became a Raven. He put the icing on the cake in week 9. Playing against one of his former teams, The Steelers, he scored a 95 yard touchdown on a pass from Joe Flacco.
He finished the season with a total of 1017 yards and four touchdowns. With the 2017 season underway he is going to once again prove those doubters wrong who thought he was finished in Minnesota. Since coming to Baltimore he has that fire that he had when he was in Pittsburgh.
I am proud to have #17 on my team and it will only get better with two speed receivers and a slot guy, those defensive backs are gonna have a fit trying to cover them. So, here’s to another stellar season by Mike Wallace.
Featured images courtesy: PressBox Baltimore
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