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Thursday, November 10, 2005

Thoughts on Javon Walker

by Bruce Smith



Javon Walker has worked hard during each season and offseason to become an elite talent at WR. He did not miss a moment of training camp and went all out in every practice in his career in Green Bay. Brett Favre said the same of JW and stated he agreed that he deserved more money but that he was going about it the wrong way. Brett also said he wanted him in camp because he is so talented that he didn't need to worry about a big contract, because with his talent it would take care of itself. Disagree with JW's tactics, but it was all about business and looking out for his future -- and his injury demonstrates why he was no fool to be concerned. When camp started many of you predicted that he would not show -- but show he did. He has never been a trouble maker and was injured trying to make a play that many receivers would have run out of bounds on. You can question his strategy but it is unfair to question his heart.

His injury while serious it is unlikely to be one that will end his career. He is big, strong and dedicated to being a top tier receiver. His knee surgery is reported to have gone well and there is no reason not to expect a full recovery. He has just about everything going for him: advanced technology on ACL surgery, youth, incentive, a good history of healing and pushing through pain...

As for his intelligence, he did not seem to struggle learning the WC offense and quickly earned Brett's trust as his go to guy. I know he did not have the best wonderlic score, but he seemed to have good football instincts and handled a complicated offense very well.

Finally, there is mention of Daunte Culpepper and his prognosis in this thread. I fully expect Daunte to recover and resume his career as a QB. However, he will never be the running threat he once was, tearing all three ligiments is a far more serious and threatening injury than Javon suffered. Many QB's with good arms like Daunte have continued their careers with knee braces and no ability to run. However it was such a big part of what made Daunte a true threat, it is questionable whether he will ever reach his once seemingly great potential. This season without Randy Moss, before he was injured, he struggled with decision making, seemed to be easily confused by defensive switches, got happy feet when blitzed and continued to have trouble holding on to the football(very small hands). His surgery is far more complex and involves a complete rebuild. Daunte's road to recover is far more daunting than Javon's.


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