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Now with Ravens, Mike Wallace still can't bring himself to hate Steelers

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Mike Wallace took time after Wednesday's practice to reminisce about how much trouble he gave the Baltimore Ravens when he was a wide receiver with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

"They kept me out of the end zone pretty good," Wallace said. "But they couldn't stop me from getting a lot of yards."

Wallace, who totaled 426 yards and one touchdown in eight games against Baltimore, didn't realize that linebacker Terrell Suggs was standing a few feet away.

"Whoa! Whoa!" Suggs shouted.

Wallace immediately attempted to smooth things over, saying with a laugh, "I didn't know you were there, Sizz. My bad. We're on the same side now. I'm wearing the purple, baby."

Wallace has played against the Steelers twice since leaving Pittsburgh at the end of the 2012 season, but this is the fist time he will be on the opposite side of one of the most intense feuds in football.

Wallace didn't pull any punches in describing the emotions involved in this game.

"A lot of hate, no love," Wallace said.

A free-agent signing by the Ravens this offseason, Wallace was asked if he could have such strong feelings against the team he caught 235 passes for from 2009 to 2012.

"I don't know if I could ever just hate them because of all the stuff I've been through with that organization," Wallace said. "I'm definitely on this side to win. When we line up Sunday, none of those guys are going to be my friends. We're out to kill them. We're out to win the division. I'm going to do everything I can to do my part to bring a win back this way."

Wallace has turned around his career with the one-time rival Ravens. A year after setting career lows in receiving yards and touchdowns with the Minnesota Vikings, he leads the Ravens with 490 yards receiving and three touchdown catches.

With Steve Smith Sr. (ankle) out the last two games, Wallace stepped up to produce 217 yards on 14 catches.

"Mike is playing really well -- great attitude and work ethic," coach John Harbaugh said. "He loves football, loves coming to work every day, loves competing on Sunday."

Wallace is one of three players with 50 touchdown catches while averaging over 15 yards per catch since his first NFL season in 2009. The others are: Calvin Johnson and Jordy Nelson.

Most of that production came when Wallace was with the Steelers. Now, he's playing for the team that Pittsburgh loves to hate.

"Being on this side is a little weird," Wallace said. "It's the greatest rivalry in football. You want to be a part of it, no matter what side you're on."