The Facts: When the 2019 season starts, Walker, coming off a broken ankle, will be 35. Before leaving the facility for the offseason, he said his recovery is going as scheduled. His goal is to be able to run and catch footballs in OTAs. He knows the questions about returning to form will arise and he welcomes the challenge. "I don’t really remember how old I am," Walker said. "They can judge me all they want. I already know people are going to say it’s going to be a struggle to come back off an injury like this. They doubted me before and look how far I got. I am just going to prove everybody wrong."
Diehards Line: As ESPN.com's Turron Davenport notes, there's a saying in the NFL that a reliable tight end is a quarterback's best friend. Given how Walker has been targeted over 100 times in each of his three full seasons paired with QB Marcus Mariota, that rings true in Tennessee. The 13-year veteran has been the focal point of the passing game since arriving as a free agent in 2013. Mariota appreciates the impact Walker has on opposing defenses. "Delanie was such a vital part of the offense, and he caused matchup problems. Teams tried to figure out how to match up against him or maybe even put two guys on him," Mariota said after Walker was hurt last September. Indeed, a former college wideout, Walker presents those matchup problems. Opposing defenses struggle to stop Walker because he is too fast for most linebackers to cover, and at 6-2 and 248 pounds, he can outmuscle defensive backs. Last year, the Titans' tight ends combined for 63 receptions for 750 yards and seven touchdowns without Walker. By comparison, Walker himself averaged 71.2 receptions along with 831.2 yards and five touchdowns from 2013 to 2017. His return is worth watching.