2. LB Anthony Walker (Cleveland Browns)
He’s arguably one of the more underrated players at his position. Linebacker Anthony Walker began his career with the Indianapolis Colts as a fifth-round draft choice from Northwestern in 2017. By his second season in the league, he was basically a fixture in the starting lineup. He finished second on the club in tackles in both 2018 and ’20 and led Frank Reich’s club in stops in 2019.
After four seasons with the Colts, he signed a one-year contract with the Cleveland Browns a year ago. Despite playing in only 13 games (12 starts), he wound up leading the club with 113 tackles – the third time in five NFL seasons he totaled at least 100-plus stops.
Eric Kendricks led the Vikings with 143 tackles, to go along with five sacks, three takeaways and four passes defensed. Fellow linebackers Nick Vigil and Anthony Barr ranked fourth and fifth on the team with 83 and 72 defensive stops, respectively. But both of the latter can become unrestricted free agents on March 16.
Veteran coach Ed Donatell is Minnesota’s newest defensive coordinator. He inherits a unit that gave up the third-most total yards in the league in 2021. Could Walker help if Barr and/or Vigil opt to leave?