For at least the past three or four seasons, we have seen a player come seemingly out of nowhere and forge their way onto the Green Bay Packers roster. In 2010, the team’s Super Bowl championship season, it was cornerback Sam Shields. In 2011 it was linebacker Vic So’oto. Last season, it was linebacker Dezman Moses. This year, it’s the offensive side of the ball’s turn as wide receiver Tyrone Walker seems to be “that guy” in this year’s training camp.
Just before camp broke last month, our very own Thomas Hobbes penned a profile on Walker and compared him to former Packers receiver Greg Jennings. The comparison was that Walker is not the fastest or biggest guy on the field, but he runs fluid routes, gets open, and he can hang onto the ball.
Coming from a small school in that of Illinois State, Walker’s road to the NFL was not only hampered by a lack of spotlight, but Thomas notes that some of his teammates (LB Nate Palmer, QB Matt Brown) were bigger priorities for the Packers. Brown has already been cut and Palmer is buried behind a bevy of guys competing at linebacker. Meanwhile, Walker has established himself as a player that the coaching staff needs to keep a close eye on.
It’s always a good sign when your All-Pro quarterback is noticing you and asking you if you were open on a previous play during live game action. Walker had five catches for 41 yards in the preseason opener against the Arizona Cardinals. Just a few days ago, JSOnline’s Tom Silverstein wrote about Walker and how many of the current Packers’ starters are recognizing his talents.
With receivers Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb both trying to heal from previous injuries, Walker is making the most of the increased opportunity to practice and see the field. He is constantly mentioned in practice updates and seems to take steps forward each day in pushing for a roster spot. Both Nelson and Cobb are expected to be ready for the start of the regular season, but the team is also an injury away from becoming thin at a very crucial position. Walker’s value could skyrocket in a hurry depending on the team’s health at receiver.