One player who has skyrocketed in NFL mock drafts since the end of college football season is Georgia EDGE, Travon Walker.
In fact, with most believing that Aidan Hutchinson will be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, more and more NFL Draft “experts” think the Detroit Lions will select Walker with the No. 2 pick.
Walker is an athletic freak and he proved that at the 2022 NFL Scouting Combine when at 6’5″, 272 lbs, he ran a 4.51 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 35.5 inches. He also had a broad jump of 123 inches and completed the 3-cone drill in 6.89 seconds.
As time has gone by, some have even gone as far as comparing Walker to NFL All-Pro, Myles Garrett.
Folks, I really hate to burst your bubble if you are sky-high on Travon Walker but he is probably not going to be the next Myles Garrett. In fact, he probably will not come close to being the next Myles Garrett.
When watching Walker on film, the first thing that I notice is that there are times when it looks like he is playing his position for the first time in a real game. I don’t want to say he looks “lost” on the field but I would not hate on anyone who did draw that conclusion when watching his film.
I am not a big box score evaluator but there is something to be said for production and Walker only had 9.5 sacks in his entire career at Georgia. Of course, it is important to note that he was on a dominant Bulldogs defense and he was not leaned upon to destroy quarterbacks.
Does Travon Walker have the athletic ability to be a dominant NFL player? Absolutely he does, there is no question about that.
But is Walker already a polished pass rusher who is worthy of being the No. 2 overall pick in an NFL Draft? In my opinion, he is not worthy of the No. 2 overall pick but in a draft like we have this year, who is worthy?
Here is what Dane Brugler has to say about Walker.
A one-year starter at Georgia, Walker lined up primarily as the field defensive end in former defensive coordinator Dan Lanning’s 3-4 base scheme but logged snaps everywhere up and down the line from nose tackle to a “Leo” role. Although he was part of a heavy rotation his first two years and doesn’t have the career production expected of a top pick, he impacts the game in a number of ways and was an important part of Georgia’s 2021 national championship. Walker has rare movement skills for a 275-pounder, including an explosive first step to shoot through gaps, cross the face of blockers or chase down plays. He wasn’t asked to be a consistent outside rusher in the Bulldogs’ scheme, but that helped him develop into a strong run defender, disengaging and leveraging blocks. Overall, Walker is still developing his sequencing plan as a pass rusher, but he has freaky athletic traits for his size and offers the natural power and length to consistently win his match-ups. He projects as a scheme-diverse front-seven player with the potential to be one of the best NFL defenders from this draft class.