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Could DeMarcus Walker be secret weapon for Titans?

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Houston Texans Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Tennessee Titans signed free agent defensive end DeMarcus Walker to a one-year contract in mid May. Walker’s signing wasn’t welcomed with much fanfare, but a pattern is beginning to emerge. Titans Head Coach Mike Vrabel was quick to heap praise on Walker throughout organized team activities (OTAs).

Walker spent last season playing for the Houston Texans. He appeared in 13 regular-season contests, and recorded 31 total tackles, 4.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, and seven quarterback hits. Walker originally entered the NFL as a second-round selection of the Denver Broncos in the 2017 NFL Draft. He played his college football at Florida State. Walker appeared in 36 games with five starts during his four seasons in Denver, recording 51 tackles, 10.5 sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He’s much more than a camp body. Vrabel recently admitted he liked Walker coming out of Florida State.

Walker visited the with Tennessee’s division rival Indianapolis Colts just days before signing with the Titans. Walker spoke with the media on Monday. The former Florida State standout credited Titans General Manager Jon Robinson for getting a contract done in Tennessee.

“Jon Robinson reached out to me himself,” Walker said, when asked about finding a comfort level with the Titans in free agency. “We spoke via telephone. Through prayer and faith, it brought me here. They took a big step, and my goal is to take an even bigger step.”

The 6-foot-4, 280 pound Walker could play both inside and outside for Tennessee. That added versatility increases Walker’s chances of making the final 53-man roster out of training camp, as the Titans have few defenders capable of playing multiple positions across the defensive line. It could make Walker a direct backup for Denico Autry, who also played both inside and outside throughout last season. Walker is part of a defensive line group that includes Jeffery Simmons, Autry, Teair Tart, Naquan Jones, Larrell Murchison, Da’Shawn Hand, Kevin Strong, Haskell Garrett, Sam Okuayinonu and Jayden Peevy. There’s terrific depth here, but Walker seems to have an inside track on securing a roster spot.

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