Steelers president Art Rooney II had a simple message Wednesday when asked about wide receiver Mike Wallace:
“He should be here,” Rooney said, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Without seeing video or hearing audio, it’s impossible to divine intent in Rooney’s four words, but on the computer screen, they appear rather abrupt.
Wallace has stayed away from the Steelers three-day minicamp which ends Thursday, but Friday’s the big day, as Florio summed up this morning.
That’s when the Steelers can pull his $2.7 million one-year tender offer, and replace it with a new tender of 10-percent over his 2011 salary, which would be $577,500.
“It’s probably short-term misery,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said of Wallace’s absence. “Hopefully there will be some closure to this and it will be in our rear view mirror. Right now, he’d be better served if he were here working.”
If Rooney’s words are interpreted as a shot across Wallace’s bow, a testy situation could get even worse.
UPDATE: 3:36 p.m.: Post-Gazette beat writer Gerry Dulac tweeted that the Steelers would not reduce Wallace’s tender, per a team source.