By Danny Cox
Name: Kevin Walter – WR – #87
Weight: 218 lbs.
Hometown: Lake Forest, IL
College: Eastern Michigan
Experience: 11 years
Kevin Walter is a wide receiver in the NFL, but he was always looked at as someone that just didn’t have what it takes to prosper in the professional league. He has gone on to prove a great number of people wrong, and now he is hoping that his career can continue in Tennessee and that he can find a way back into the spotlight.
Walter played wide receiver throughout his entire football life, and that goes back to his time in a high school right outside of Chicago. He was a three-year letterman for Libertyville High School, where he was selected for all-state honors after catching 48 passes for 801 yards and six touchdowns.
His numbers weren’t always great, but he knew that football was what he wanted to do.
Upon entering college at Eastern Michigan University, Walter began to excel in the sport he loved so much. He started building up his numbers and was able to bring forth skills that many people may not have even realized he had.
Walter set school records in a great number of categories with 211 career receptions, 2,838 receiving yards, and 20 touchdown catches. During his senior season, he earned first-team All-MAC honors with 93 receptions for 1,368. That alone gave him two more records for single-season numbers.
Now, the big question was whether or not he was ready for the NFL.
Walter was selected by the New York Giants in the seventh round of the 2003 NFL Draft with the 255th overall pick. Seven more picks and he would have been undrafted, but at least he had the honor of saying he was selected. Sadly, his time with the Giants didn’t even last until the end of training camp.
Once released, the Cincinnati Bengals picked up Walter and kept him on the roster for a full three years. The majority of his time was spent on special teams or as a back-up wide receiver, but that’s about it.
It was in 2006 when Walter’s NFL career truly began, and he can thank the Bengals for not matching an offer given to him from the Houston Texans during his free agency period. During his first season with the team, he got very little playing time, but things changed from there.
Texans’ star wide receiver Andre Johnson was injured during the 2007 season, and Walter was forced to step up and become the starter. Many Texan fans were still confused with who Kevin Walter was, until week six when he had 12 receptions for 160 yards against their division rival Jaguars. He would finish the season with 65 receptions, 800 yards, and four touchdowns.
Once Andre Johnson fully recovered, it was clear that Walter earned his spot as the team’s second best receiver.
From there, Walter had six more successful seasons in Houston, with his best year coming in 2008 when he had 65 receptions for 899 yards and eight touchdowns. Still, the Texans finished 8-8 and were without a playoff appearance since their inauguration in 2002.
Sadly, Walter’s numbers have declined since then and he was finally released by the Texans in March of 2013. Three weeks later, he signed with the Tennessee Titans.
Now he is in the middle of a group of wide receivers that includes such names as Kendall Wright, Kenny Britt, Nate Washington, and Justin Hunter. Walter is going to have to work hard to make it onto the team and try and break into the top three wide receiver spots.
Then again, hard work is nothing that Kevin Walter isn’t used to.
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Danny Cox knows a little something about the NFL, whether it means letting you know what penalty will come from the flag just thrown on the field or quickly spouting off who the Chicago Bears drafted in the first round of the 1987 draft (Jim Harbaugh). He plans on bringing you the best news, previews, recaps, and anything else that may come along with the exciting world of the National Football League. His work can be found on Examiner.com.