For the sixth time this season, the Steelers will be lining up with a different offensive line than the one they started the week before. The Steelers suffered four injured lineman in Thursday night’s game in the fourth quarter against the Baltimore Ravens. They were center Fernando Velasko (achilles), right guard David DeCastro (foot), and left tackles Kelvin Beachum (knee) and Mike Adams (ankle).
Velasko is the second center to be placed on injured reserve behind Maurkice Pouncey. Beachum was seen in the Steelers Practice Facility parking lot limping.
Due to all of the injuries, the Steelers are now forced to rely on the third string center, Cody Wallace. Wallace was originally drafted in 2009 by the San Francisco 49ers in the fourth round. After spending two seasons with the niners, Wallace bounced around practice squads playing with the Lions, Jets, and Texans. In 2012, the 6’4″ 300 pound Wallace played in eight games with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Wallace had this to say on Monday after the Steelers finished practice:
“I think I’m ready for it. I’ve been here all year, I definitely had the chance to learn everything. So I’ll step in and hopefully do as well as Fernando did, and we won’t miss a beat.”
The Steelers signed Wallace September 1st, 2013. Wallace was inactive the first five games of the season but has been active the previous seven. He has seen action at center and guard in 2013 due to injuries on the line.
As the fourth year lineman from Texas A&M gets set to make his first start of the season, the Steelers are hoping he answers the call of duty.