Wide receiver changes looming

WR Javon Walker said he could return to Denver and be happy if he were brought back, but the Broncos might have a difficult time bringing him back after his postseason statements.

With Brandon Marshall emerging as one of the best young receivers in the NFL for the Denver Broncos, Javon Walker apparently wants to go elsewhere.

Walker stopped short of demanding a trade or his release, but he made his feelings pretty clear after the Broncos' season finished.

"I just don't think it's the best fit for me," Walker said of Denver's offense. "It's not for me. I can easily say that now. I wouldn't say it until the end of the season, but it's not for me."

While he said Marshall's 102-catch season had nothing to do with his displeasure, his words seemed to indicate otherwise. He never revealed a specific problem he had with how he was used in the offense. Walker had 1,000 receiving yards in 2006 and had 220 yards in Denver's first two games this season before a knee injury flared up.

But he said he thought he would be elsewhere next season.

"I just don't see it happening with Javon here," Walker said. "I'm happy to be here. I just don't see it happening with me here."

The Broncos owe Walker $4.4 million in bonuses this offseason and another $1 million bonus during the 2008 season. Walker is coming off a season in which he was a non-factor after the second game because of the knee injury. He had surgery in October and didn't have a catch longer than 11 yards when he returned.

He had admitted he wasn't healthy, but he was defensive after the season.

"My playmaking ability didn't diminish," Walker said. "It's still here, it will always be here, it's just unfortunate that I got injured."

Walker said he could return to Denver and be happy if he were brought back, but the Broncos might have a difficult time bringing him back after his postseason statements. He also will be tough to trade because of his knee problems.

But Walker didn't think he would be with the Broncos much longer.

"I'll still be living here, but you all will see me somewhere along down the road in another situation," Walker said.

NOTES, QUOTES

--WR Javon Walker sounded off after the season that he might fit better somewhere else, but fellow receiver Brandon Stokley thought Walker could return strong in 2008. Walker's numbers were miserable aside from two good games to start the season because of a knee injury.

"I think Javon kind of took a bad rap for this year for what happened to him that he had no control over with his knee," Stokley said. "It's not fun trying to get healthy during the season when you have a banged-up knee."

If Walker isn't back, Stokley could be the starter opposite Brandon Marshall. Stokley's knee, which kept him out the final three games, should get healthy with a couple weeks of rest.

--The Broncos made an effort to get Brandon Marshall over the 100-catch plateau. He needed eight in the season finale to reach that milestone, and he got there in the third quarter Sunday.

"I knew what he needed going into it, and I told him I was going to try, but if it didn't happen, it didn't happen," QB Jay Cutler said.

"He got four or five before halftime, and I told him at halftime I'd probably be able to get him eight."

Marshall became the third second-year receiver in NFL history to record 100 catches.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "It has been a tough year. You like to end it on a positive note." -- Broncos coach Mike Shanahan on the season-ending win against Minnesota.



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