Mike Walker, WR/CB
Numbers: 6010, 192 pounds, 4.49 – 4.53 forty-time
2005 Stats: 64-855 yards, 9 TDs receiving, 1-7-0 rushing, 4 tackles, 1-8 tackles for loss
The Player: Walker is simply an outstanding athlete. When the Golden Knights were hit with injuries in the secondary, they pulled him off the receiving squad and made him a starting corner. In his sophomore year, he had 9 receptions for 171 yards and 3 interceptions for another 71. Back at wide receiver as a junior last year, he re-established himself as a premier deep threat, but still played a little corner and looked good doing it. As a wideout, Walker shows surprising speed and good hands. He's explosive off the line, can smack his way out of the chuck and is very hard to knock off his route. He's a good leaper, will wrestle down even the toughest DBs and is adept at adjusting to the ball once it's in the air. As a corner, he shows (not too surprisingly) an terrific understanding of routes and zones and a nose for the ball. He's not a bad tackler and has shown the ability to strip the ball and make the odd big-time hit. While he has some ability as a defensive back, his future is on offense. To me, he appears to be about as good as former teammate Brandon Marshall, who was selected by the Broncos in the fourth round, and to have more long-range potential.
How He Fits: Bill Polian is determined to give Peyton Manning as many targets as he can and is willing to take chances on players overlooked by other teams. While the Colts have outstanding receivers at the start of this season, Marvin Harrison will be 34, Reggie Wayne 28 and Brandon Stokely an injury-marred 30. There's definitely room for some young blood. Walker, if properly coached and motivated, could be an excellent No. 2 receiver in the NFL. And until then, he could use his superior vision and top-notch tackling ability to help on kick and punt coverage.
Who He Reminds Me Of: Jabar Gaffney, a second-round draft pick with the Texans who recently signed with the Eagles.
(Photo: Todd Drexler/U. of Central Florida)
Colt Scout: WR Mike Walker
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