Walker Steps Up

Walker, in his second year with the Packers, caught three blistering passes from Favre, two of them for touchdowns, as Green Bay beat Minnesota 30-27 at the Metrodome Sunday night. <I>Packerreport.com</I> talks to Javon and others in the Packers locker room about his huge night...

MINNEAPOLIS - Packers quarterback Brett Favre throws just as hard with a broken thumb. Just ask Green Bay wide receiver Javon Walker.

Walker, in his second year with the Packers, caught three blistering passes from Favre, two of them for touchdowns, as Green Bay beat Minnesota 30-27 at the Metrodome Sunday night.

His second score of the night came on a laser-like pass from Favre with 13:14 left in the fourth quarter to give Green Bay a 27-20 lead.

On the play, Walker went to the middle of the end zone and turned around. Favre, playing with a fractured right thumb, whistled the pass to Walker, who held on and kept the ball away from Vikings cornerback Corey Chavous, who earlier in the game had intercepted a pass meant for Walker.

"That's a play we have been practicing and executing," Walker said. "We knew we could run it and we did. It felt great to catch it. That shows what we're capable of on offense."

Walker's day didn't start well as Favre's first two passes to Walker fell incomplete. The third, which came with 6:08 left in the first half, was intercepted by Chavous.

But he finally got on the scoresheet on the next drive when on second-and-5 from the Vikings 12, Favre connected with him at the Minnesota 6. Walker juked one way, then the other, forcing Denard Walker to lunge the wrong way. Walker cut inside and dashed to end zone for a touchdown that made 20-14 at half.

"That was just instinct," Walker said. "You want to make a catch, then look to see if you can make something happen."

Walker's second score came early in the fourth after the Vikings had tied the game 20-20 with a 37-yard field goal. Green Bay drove 73 yards in nine plays on the next series. On first down from the Vikings 11, Favre fired incomplete. A second-down run by Ahman Green lost a yard, then on third down, Walker made his play.

He made another big play about five minutes later. The Green Bay defense forced the Vikings to punt. On the drive the Packers faced a third-and-2 from the Green Bay 28. Favre stood in the pocket and delivered a strike to Walker, who ran a slant route from the left side. He caught the ball, gained 18 yards and kept the drive alive. The series, which ate 6:40 off the clock, ended in a Ryan Longwell field goal that made it 30-20 with 2:37 left.

"Javon has tremendous talent, that's why we drafted him in the first round. Javon just didn't show up today, he has been there every day, making plays," Favre said. "Today the ball just happened to come his way. In this offense, some days you'll get nine balls, and the next day you'll get none. But you have to be ready to make the plays when you get the chance."

Fellow wide receiver Donald Driver was equally impressed with his young teammate.

He has the tools to be one of the best in the league," Driver said. "Today he showed that. Now he has to try to keep that high and take his game to next level, where he consistently does that."


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