Skip to main content

Walker Emerging As Go-To Receiver


Throughout this summer's training camp, one of the constant themes among the media covering the Packers was which two of the team's three receivers would be named as starters.

All three of the top pass-catchers, Donald Driver, Robert Ferguson and Javon Walker, repeatedly said that it didn't matter whose names were announced when the starting lineup was introduced prior to each game's kickoff.

After three games, though, it appears that Walker has not only locked down a spot in the lineup, but is becoming Brett Favre's go-to guy.

The numbers he has posted over the past few weeks could have some Packer observers conjuring up memories of Favre's first go-to receiver - and another #84 - Sterling Sharpe.

The third-year player out of Florida State University posted career numbers in Sunday's game at Indianapolis, catching 11 passes for 200 yards and three touchdowns, scoring on plays of 36, 79, and 12 yards. His 79-yard reception in the first quarter also established a new career-best.

Walker's three-touchdown performance marked the first time in six seasons that a Packer receiver had made three scoring catches in one game. Antonio Freeman, another Favre favorite, was the last to accomplish the feat December 20, 1998 against Tennessee.

His 200-yard receiving ouput was just the 10th in Packers history and the first since Don Beebe managed 220 against San Francisco on October 14, 1996.

The game marked the third 100-yard receiving game in his 34-game career and his second in as many weeks. Walker led the team with seven grabs for 102 yards last Sunday against Chicago as well.

Walker is no stranger to putting up numbers, though. Even as the third receiver in the offense, he turned in a breakout season in 2003, establishing himself as a threat in the potent Packer passing game.

In his second year, the 6-foot-3 Walker caught a team-best nine touchdowns among his 41 catches. He also led the league with a 17.5-yard average per catch.

Walker's outstanding performance Sunday was dampened somewhat when he had the ball wrestled away from him by Indianapolis defender Jason David in the fourth quarter of the 45-31 loss to the Colts.

After the game, Walker reflected on the turnover.

"It shouldn't have happened," he said. "I should have secured the ball better. It's something I'm going to work on."

The receiver was also very modest about the three times he found himself behind the Indianapolis defense and in the end zone.

"I didn't do anything but beat the defender," said Walker. "(It was) nothing fancy, I just beat him. They might have blown a coverage on the third one because I was really wide open."

Favre had kind words for his young receiver following the game.

"He had a great day and I know how he felt after that last play," said the quarterback. "I know he will really feel bad about that play. That's the kind of guy he is. He really cares and that's what counts."

Although the game did not end up in the Packers' favor, Walker is confident in himself and the rest of the offense and what they can continue to accomplish.

"We feel like we can do that every week," Walker said. "Things just didn't go our way in the end."

If he and his fellow receivers continue to put up numbers like they did Sunday, things will go their way more often than not.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content