wrote an article in the PG as well talking about this.
Hines Ward will not be the only receiver in danger of leaving the Steelers before the 2012 season begins.
One of the Young Money trio's contract expires, and, whether Mike Wallace returns, could depend on several factors inside and outside the organization.
Wallace becomes a restricted free agent in March, and, while the Steelers partially can protect their rights to him by offering him a one-year tender, there is no guarantee another team might see more value in him and try to sign him.
The Steelers likely will tender him a contract high enough -- those numbers have yet to be determined by the league -- to guarantee that, if someone else signs him, the Steelers would receive a first-round draft choice in return or be able to match the contract and keep him. They also could negotiate a long-term deal with Wallace before he becomes a restricted free agent.
Veteran Jerricho Cotchery, who signed a one-year contract with the Steelers in August after asking for and receiving his release from the New York Jets, is a different case. Cotchery will be an unrestricted free agent and, while the Steelers would like him back, they will not offer him big money, and he could look for a team on which he could start.
Losing Ward, Wallace and Cotchery would be a blow to a receiving corps that blossomed in its transition over the past two seasons. Chances are good, however, that they will be able to keep Wallace. Antonio Brown, whose unexpected and phenomenal season earned him the MVP vote from his teammates, will return along with Emmanuel Sanders for their third seasons.
"We know the direction in which we are going with the receiving corps," Sanders said.