Walker getting brainwashed

Wide receiver committing career suicide with holdout

Javon Walker is making a big mistake with his decision to not report to the Green Bay Packers training camp next week. The wide receiver's decision became official Wednesday when his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, announced it to the media.

Walker is 25 years old and has the world by the tail. He has made more than $6 million in his first three seasons of playing professional football. And now he has hired an agent who has brainwashed him into thinking that he can demand an instant raise despite the fact that he has two seasons remaining on his current contract.

Walker's antics are simply ridiculous. It's unfortunate that Rosenhaus has gotten into his head and has made him think he can do anything.

By sitting out of training camp and possibly the season, Walker, Rosenhaus, Grady Jackson and whomever else sticks their hand out for more money will quickly find out that they are not controlling the asylum. The Packers have made it clear to Walker in a letter that they will not renegotiate his deal at this time. Other NFL teams also have told Rosenhaus's clients crying for more money to stick it in their ear.

If Walker was a star quarterback, he might have a little more leverage. But he's a receiver, and receivers are a dime a dozen in the NFL. Check out the wide receiver's position preview on PackerReport.com today. If Walker doesn't play, the Packers can move Robert Ferguson into his spot and give some of their other, younger receivers an opportunity. Terrence Murphy and Craig Bragg are solid prospects. Plus, they'll have the entire training camp to take reps in practices that Walker usually receives and get timing down with Brett Favre. In other words, Walker's absence will be felt some at first, but in the long run, the Packers can get by without him.

Walker has had one good season in Green Bay. He has the potential to have more good seasons, but he'll never be able to showcase it by not playing. Is he a one-year wonder? How can he prove his critics wrong by not playing?

If Walker sits, what does he have to gain? Not much. The Packers will not renegotiate, and it's doubtful that they'll get much for him in a trade. There are not many teams out there will to trade for a player who wants a blockbuster contract and has Rosenhaus as an agent. With each day of missed training camp, Walker will get fined, he won't be catching a single pass, and he'll continue to lose the respect of Packers fans.

By reporting to camp, Walker will have time to properly prepare for the season. He'll enter as the team's top receiver, meaning he's the first option for Favre on most plays. So he'll have the chance to catch more passes and increase his chances of a new deal toward the end of this season.

Walker uses injury as the reason for renegotiating now rather than later. If that's the case, every player on the team could demand a new deal before the start of every season because they might get hurt. Injuries are a fact of life in the NFL. Players that deal with them, or play through them, survive. Those who try to avoid injuries or are unable to deal with them, have very short careers.

Walker is a good receiver. He can be a great one and make even more money than he has already in his career if he continues to play and work with the Packers on a new contract when the time is right. But he will soon be killing his opportunity to reach that level because he has received some poor advice. Unfortunately, he's buying into it.


Todd Korth

Note: Todd Korth is managing editor of PackerReport.com and Packer Report. E-mail him at packrepted@aol.com.


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