Who knew there would be demand for outside linebacker Erik Walden on the first day of free agency? Sure as hell not us. Nonetheless, Walden left the Green Bay Packers for the Indianapolis Colts on a day typically reserved for the cream of the free agent crop.
Walden got a new four-year deal, reportedly worth $16 million.
Much like last offseason, the Packers expressed zero interest in retaining Walden, who started nine games and recorded 46 tackles, three sacks and two picks in 2012. The Packers signed Walden to a one-year, league minimum deal when no one else offered him a contract last year.
This year was a different story. Despite Walden’s, uh… uneven play he had plenty of suitors. In addition to the Colts, the Chiefs and Raiders also expressed interest. Not coincidentally, those two teams are run by guys who used to sit in the Packers front office.
However, the Colts stepped forward with the biggest offer — an offer we might term “idiotic.” Consider, Walden has just 26 starts in five NFL seasons and we aren’t exaggerating when we say he’s never performed at a high level for a full season. No, Walden plays balls out for three or four games and then disappears for the remainder of the year. Happened in 2011. Happened in 2012.
Still, he’s getting a starting spot in Indy!
“The Colts gave us the best offer,” Walden said. “They want us to come in as the starter. You can’t beat that.
“I’m going to have an opportunity to start. That’s how I’m looking at it. I’m going in to compete and take the job.
“They have Jerry Hughes, a first-round pick. You never know. They might bring somebody in in the draft. That’s not really my concern. I’m going in to be the man.“
The man, indeed.
Who knows. Maybe Walden will put it all together in Indianapolis. He’s still only 27.
We’d be surprised though. Good luck to him either way. If you’re a Packers fan, you’ll always have the footage of Walden hopelessly trying to catch Colin Kaepernick.
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$4 mil a year for Walden is pure insanity.
This is a perfect example of how the market DOESN’T tell you how much something or someone is worth.
Good luck to him.
“If you’re a Packers fan, you’ll always have the footage of Walden hopelessly trying to catch Colin Kaepernick” LOL!!
That’s a lot of money to somebody not able to set the edge!
I bet the CB on Walden’s side is THRILLED with his many new run-support opportunities !!!
Seems as if the Colts are using FA to beef up the line on both sides of the ball. Signings today include right tackle Gosder Cherilus (Lions), cornerback Greg Toler (AZ), linebacker Erik Walden, guard Donald Thomas (NE) and linebacker Lawrence Sidbury (Atlanta).
It will be interesting to see how Walden performs in Manuski’s scheme.
I’m a Packer fan, and i’ll always have the footage of most the Packer defense hopelessly trying to catch Colin Kaepernick…..That’s a memory we dont need to keep bringing up.
Sadly it had to be the Packers defense whom that jagoff exploited by running through them, it’s a memory I as well don’t want to keep remembering neither, but we must put that behind us and look forward to the 2013 season, hopefully bring home another Lombardi trophy. Go Pack Go!!
I think Walden Did a good job for us – You bring up the fact that Kapernick ran circles around him (He did clay mathews too) but my memory will be him crushing cutler with 3 sacks in that win and in Chicago game before the super bowl run. Best of Luck to Mr Walden
@Andy. What a game that was and ended beautifully with Nick Collins intercepting Cunt-ler’s overthrown pass to Hester giving the Pack the #6 seed playoff spot and delivering the dagger to the Choke-n-go Bears.