Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Herschel Walker? Seriously?
By Pat Yasinskas
Somewhere in Hawaii, Atlanta Pro Bowl running back Michael Turner is probably waking up right about now. But the good news for Turner is he can roll over and go back to sleep. Pro Bowl practices don't start until Wednesday and there is another bit of news that isn’t going to cause Turner to lose any sleep.
Herschel Walker says he wants to make a football comeback and he wants to play for the Atlanta Falcons. I’m not sure how serious Walker was when he made those comments during a conference call to promote an upcoming MMA event, but … come on, Walker is 48 years old.
Yes, Walker always has been an athletic freak and he claims his MMA training has him in better shape than ever. I don’t question that, but the fact is Walker last played in the NFL in 1997.
Could the Falcons use another running back to go with Turner and Jason Snelling? Sure, they could use a speed back to fill the role they always wanted Jerious Norwood, who is about to become a free agent, to fill. But they can do that in the college draft.
The Falcons don’t need a side show, even though Walker is a Georgia native and played at the University of Georgia. Speaking of that, there was a time in the early 1980s when a lot of people said Walker was the greatest college football player ever. Then, in his last college game, Walker ran into Joe Paterno and Penn State and he never really looked the same after that (Paterno and Penn State did the same thing to Vinny Testaverde a few years later).
Walker went on to have a nice professional career in the United States Football League and the NFL, but he never quite was the dominant player he was through much of his college career. Yeah, all this talk about a return is going to bring Walker some attention.
But he should stick to the MMA thing. Paterno’s got more football left in him than Walker does.