'Why Kenneth Walker?'

 

In the mold of Marlon Mack — meshed with the lateral to linear chaining capabilities of J.K. Dobbins

Movement toolbox & non-linear athletic capabilities

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Walker as a mover is a nice blend of reactive and economical who covers a noticeable amount of ground on jump cuts. 

Watch how he is able to chain immediately into acceleration.

Covers two yards on a singular slalom cut here. Enjoy how he steepens his angles to create a greater propulsive mechanism.

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Walker demonstrates the ability to chain successive cuts and is most comfortable leading with his left foot. 

Easily deviates pathing which makes proper pursuit angles difficult to obtain in space. 

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We see the ground Walker covers with a left foot lead plant here coupled with the ability to chain this immediately into acceleration. 

Difficult to do in the RedZone where space is congested and contact is nearly immediate.

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This play to me legitimized Walker's athleticism. 

From a non-linear standpoint, he is an NFL athlete at the position. 

Multiple elements to his toolbox, and the capability to re-accelerate after difficult maneuvers. 

Through contact skillset & anticipatory qualities

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Through contact, Walker is evasive. Not often does he take contact square, but rather slips through engagements. 

Really like how he uses different body angles to make it difficult for defenders. 

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When engagements are consecutive Walker is decisive & consistent. 

Strong lower half and is quick to get upfield when finishing runs. 

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An important part of Walker's game stylistically is about getting downhill. 

He doesn't often turn through contact - continually shows he can drop his level to finish runs. 

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Even though pivoting through contact isn't a primary solution for Walker, it is nice to see that he is dextrous enough to deploy it as a solution in singular engagements. 

This is a testament to how well Walker anticipates contact types and how he can quickly he can observe & act given the situation.  

Skillset as a receiver 

 
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Being a capable, low-volume receiver is what I envision Walker being at the next level. 

He's not going to be tasked with a large route tree, but he doesn't have to be a successful pass catcher. 

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Creating yards after the catch is what Walker can provide immediately. Like mentioned, it won't be in high volumes, but he has the movement skills to be an open field threat. 

Would like to see him deployed more frequently as a screen option. 

Capabilities during acceleration & at top-end

 
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Walker is much better in linear acceleration than curvilinear, but you can tell he understands that. 

Watch the slight decel step when he knows he isn't beating #23 to the boundary. 

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You see this again at the 30-yard line. Slight decel to accel to mitigate the pursuit attempt from the second-level defender. 

Walker is above average during acceleration and average at max velocity. 

Similar in this area to Colts running back Marlon Mack. 

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In flashes, Walker shows the ability to bend well in a curvilinear fashion to avoid pursuit. Does it twice on this play - once at the 35-yard line and again at midfield. Not decelerating through this is the key, and he does a nice job of that. 

Would enjoy this becoming a bigger part of his game, as it is a great element to have for starting Running Backs in the NFL.

 

Ascension grades

Tier 1: 75.00 & over -- Gold Jacket potential

Tier 2: 65.00 - 74.99 -- All-pro ceiling

Tier 3: 55.00 - 64.99 -- Pro-bowl ceiling

Tier 4: 49.98 - 54.99 -- Average to Above-average starter

Tier 5: 44.96 - 49.97 -- High ceiling / High-risk prospect

Tier 6: 39.50 - 44.95 -- Secondary committee option 

Tier 7: 39.49 & below -- Depth piece with low ceiling

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