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1st and 10 with Cody Wallace

Posted Dec 20, 2013

Steelers' center Cody Wallace talks about starting and much more.

You had your first start a few weeks ago. Were there some jitters, nervous excitement for it?
It’s like that before every game. The night before the game lying in bed I have to think about anything but football otherwise I will be all tense. You work all week, you know you know everything, but you need to get your mind off it for a little bit and go into the game and have fun.

A lot of guys will say after the first snap they feel more comfortable, the butterflies go away. Was that the case?
Going out there I never played in the snow before. The second play of the game I gave up a sack. That’s not how you want to start the game. I just had to let it go. I didn’t dwell on it and let it affect me the rest of the game. You make mistakes and you just have to move on and do better the next play.
 
Is that what you always dream of when you grow up playing football, starting one day in the NFL?
That is what all of us here worked for so many years of our lives. Some guys are fortunate to get that in their first or second year. For me it took a little bit longer. I am happy to finally get a chance to break through that and hopefully show I can play in this league.

Everyone says they prepare the same whether they are starting or not because you are always a snap away. But there has to be some differences, right?
 
You definitely pay attention every week. You know all of the calls. You might watch just a little more film just because. I have always prepared hard and made sure I know everything, all of the calls, any adjustments, why we are calling an audible and all of that so I can know it before it has to happen.

Do you consider yourself a student of the game?
I do study hard. I have been able to pick up offenses everywhere and that has helped being on so many different teams, being able to group everything together and finding a way to study it to make sense.

After coming in at the end of the Ravens game, how good has it been the last few weeks to get the practice snaps with Ben Roethlisberger?
That has definitely been good. Every quarterback has a little bit different cadence, a couple little things here and there. Timing is a little different how their snap count comes out. I definitely got used to it and his communication in the huddle.

You have been on six different teams. How tough is that to deal with all that upheaval in just six years?
Moving my family around has been tough, my wife and son and another one on the way. That part of it is tough. Besides that it’s a great adventure. We have loved everywhere we have been and got a chance to see a lot of places we normally wouldn’t live in.

Until this season, you saw very little playing time. Was that hard waiting to get on the field? Was there frustration?
It is tough. Everybody wants to be the guy. You just bide your time and do the best you can to get better over the years it took to break though.

Are you as patient as one would think you would have to be to endure that wait to get on the field?
I am. I have a pretty laid back personality for the most part. It’s tough. You want to be out there. I have been on every spectrum of the league, practice squad, on the roster, backup and starter now. I have seen a little bit of everything. It’s been a good experience and I have enjoyed all of it.

Does it feel good to be tired and sore on a Monday morning?
It’s been a while since I have had to go through that, it was fun. It’s been great all and all.

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