Derek Walker, DE, Illinois

Scouting Reports of defensive ends in the 2009 NFL Draft.
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Derek Walker, DE, Illinois

Postby Pudge » Wed Jun 08, 2011 7:46 pm

Derek Walker
6-4/268 Illinois
4.99 Senior

Pros: Has a decent first step that works best on stunts. Has a nice motor and does a nice job working down the line laterally vs. the run. Comfortable moving in space and making stops in the open field with nice closing speed.

Cons: Lacks pass rush moves. Inconsistent burst coming off the edge, and can't turn the corner. Has questionable recognition and struggles at the point of attack. Doesn't get off blocks.

Overview: Like his teammate Davis, he works both inside and outside for Illinois, but is better when he lines up at DE. A guy that is a decent effort pass rusher, but isn't blessed with ideal athleticism. Best season as a senior with 6 sacks.

NFL Forecast: Walker is probably going to have to get stronger in order to stick at the next level. He just isn't consistent enough as an edge rusher to really think he'll be an impact player. Instead, he should bulk up in order to become a better run stopper, which is likely where he'll be better able to find a niche. He can play a little both inside and outside as well, but isn't going to be great.

ATL Forecast: Walker could help the rotation here in Atlanta, but lacks the long term upside to really be expected to be a starter. He'd probably just be a decent backup option behind Chauncey Davis at left end. But he's a bit of a project because he's not going to be an impact pass rusher, and hasn't yet developed into an able run stopper, which means he'd be hard-pressed impacting the Falcons for the first few years of his career.

Value: Walker may be worth a late round pick for many teams, mostly a seventh rounder for teams looking to bolster their rotation.
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