Walker Cashed In Big In 2006
The contract was basically a 1 year deal, with a huge bonus that would trigger the remaining 5 years of the contract. The idea, Walker would need to prive he was healthy enouogh to be paid like a premier receiver. If he did, he'd be paid, if not, he would be a free agent come March 2.
All Walker did this season was become the light in the dark that was the Broncos offense for most of this past season. His stats -- 69 catches, 1084 yards and 8 TDs was among the league leaders, and while not enough for a trip to the Pro Bowl was plenty enough for the Broncos to trigger the the bonus, keeping Walker in Denver the next 5 seasons.
Walker is due $10.3 million this year, most of which was due yesterday. The Broncos paid it, keeping Walker in town.
I have to say I feel good for Walker. He was underpaid, and when he tried to make note of it in Green Bay was called out by Brett Favre, a bad teammate in his own right. Walker returned, only to get hurt in the season's first game. The Broncos took a chance trading for Walker, and Walker took a chance signing a deal that really didn't pay until this off-season. Kudos all around.
As for Walker off the field, hopefully he is getting the help he needs and can overcome the D-Will tragedy. Walker works for one of the classiest organizations in sports, and if there is a better support system I'd like to see it.
Photo Courtesy of DenverBroncos.com