Labriola On

Wallace is Digest Player of the Week


As so often happens in the course of an NFL regular season game, big plays get recognized as big plays because of when they occur as much as for what they produce. For a Steelers secondary that was more than a little shorthanded on Sunday against New Orleans at Acrisure Stadium, what with William Jackson III on injured reserve, and both Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ahkello Witherspoon unavailable because of injuries, Levi Wallace was someone who helped fill the void.

Wallace finished with five tackles, he got a hand on one pass that turned into a Damontae Kazee interception, and he intercepted another himself, and both of those came in the fourth quarter. Kazee's interception led to a touchdown that extended the Steelers' lead to 10 points, and Wallace's allowed them to run out the final 4-plus minutes of a game that turned out to be a 20-10 victory over the Saints. Wallace is the Steelers Digest Player of the Week.

Also considered were Alex Highsmith, who had 5 tackles, 2 sacks, and a forced fumble; Najee Harris, who carried 20 times for 99 yards (5.0 average) and broke off a 36-yard run in the process; Kazee, who filled in for Fitzpatrick and had 4 tackles and that interception; Jaylen Warren, who rushed for 37 yards on 9 carries (4.1 average) and caught 3 passes for 40 yards; Kenny Pickett, who rushed for 51 yards including a 1-yard TD and completed 18-of-30 (60 percent) for 199 yards, with no touchdowns, no interceptions, and a rating of 79.7; and Arthur Maulet, who finished with 1 tackle, 1 pass defensed, and 2 tackles on special teams.