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How important is Delanie Walker to the 49ers?

he's VASTLY overrated

would i resign him? yeah

would i get a legit #2 TE to likely start over him? yeah
Originally posted by Phoenix49ers:
Originally posted by GNielsen:
Yeah, that's overstating his importance in the system. Walker is absolutely not "the reason we run our offense." There are at least two viable alternatives in the second round of the draft who have similar speed and are very tall (both are 6'6"). And Celek is also a good blocker who is already on the roster. And, I agree with SammyFrancisco above - either of those 6'6" guys are natural pass catchers with good hands and would give Kaepernick another advantage in the red zone.

And, I have to point this out - "cry about his drop rate"??!! Dude, he has the biggest drop rate for his position in the league. He's a receiver. When Kaepernick floats a perfect pass into his hands to win the Rams game, he's got to make that catch because HE'S A RECEIVER! I don't care how many blocks he throws - his main job is to catch the ball when it is thrown to him. Blocking is icing on the cake, but if it's a crappy tasting cake, the icing doesn't help that much.


He has the biggest drop rate in the NFL...period...and its not even close. Dropping 30% of your targets? That is insanely bad. For every 2 passes he catches, he drops one.....as a comparison, Jimmy Graham had about 3 or 4 more drops than Walker....but Graham also caught about 70 more passes.

Just want to point out, Vernon Davis had the 6th highest drop rate going into the 2012 season (the previous 3 seasons)... Both our TEs have issues holding onto the ball. Out of the 30% incompletion rate VD had this year, I'd like to know how many of those were drops.

Found it:
About 5-6%. His production dropped greatly, however, so I'm wondering if it would be higher if he were targeted more this year?
https://www.profootballfocus.com/blog/2012/12/06/sig-stat-snapshot-receiving-production-tight-ends/

Anyhow, if we draft his replacement, sure, let him go, but otherwise, it's not a necessity...
[ Edited by mkmasn on Mar 3, 2013 at 2:29 AM ]
  • cciowa
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Originally posted by DonnieDarko:
he's VASTLY overrated

would i resign him? yeah

would i get a legit #2 TE to likely start over him? yeah
of course this is the truth. it can not be that hard to find a number two tight end who can both block and catch the ball, plus maybe play some special teams which we need very badly
  • cciowa
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Originally posted by 52Fiasco:
Delanie Walker is a great player and he deserves to be on this team. He's an excellent blocker, great route runner and can make big plays when needed, the only aspect that we all can agree he neeeeeds practice on was catching. and towards the end of the season, he got much better at it. Im hoping to see what he can do next season no matter what team he end up on.
he is not a great player. great players do not drop the amount of passes he does on a regular basis
I have a scheme question I'm hoping someone with better football knowledge can answer.
If Walker doesn't resign and we draft one of the better TEs in the draft (Eifert, Ertz whatever) can Vernon take over Walker's movement and blocking role and the the draft pick take Vernon's more conventional In-line TE role in our two TE sets?
I'm not suggesting for one second that VD stop being the starter. But it seems to me that Vernon's speed could create real mismatches in a the movement x-factor role that Walker provides right now and a larger, more conventional receiving TE could fit into VD's role without our offence losing a lot of its versatility and effectiveness.
Obviously VD would play in single TE sets. But I wonder if this is workable? In short, could Vernon become our new swiss army knife?
Originally posted by 49erCanuck:
I have a scheme question I'm hoping someone with better football knowledge can answer.
If Walker doesn't resign and we draft one of the better TEs in the draft (Eifert, Ertz whatever) can Vernon take over Walker's movement and blocking role and the the draft pick take Vernon's more conventional In-line TE role in our two TE sets?
I'm not suggesting for one second that VD stop being the starter. But it seems to me that Vernon's speed could create real mismatches in a the movement x-factor role that Walker provides right now and a larger, more conventional receiving TE could fit into VD's role without our offence losing a lot of its versatility and effectiveness.
Obviously VD would play in single TE sets. But I wonder if this is workable? In short, could Vernon become our new swiss army knife?
This is a good point. We have used VD as an H-back at times. And Eifert or Ertz would be fully capable of lining up as WRs as both VD and DW often do. We can be as formation-diverse as ever even without Delanie. The only possible downside to replacing DW is that we may only have 1 elite blocker at TE instead of two.

Another idea worth considering is that we could expand Bruce Miller's role in his 3rd season. He's been underutilized as a pass-catcher and he provides most of the speed and blocking ability that DW brings. Route-running might be the only issue, but I wouldn't be surprised if the coaches have him ready to do more in 2013.
[ Edited by SammyFrancisco on Mar 3, 2013 at 9:58 AM ]
I don't get the Delanie Walker love fest at all. Yes he's the "swiss army knife" of the offense but what good is that if he can't make plays outside of lining up, running motion, and blocking? You can't tell me that another TE/FB/HB can't learn all of that while also being able to make plays down the field. Not to mention they'll probably come cheaper than Walker. Walker can walk on out for all I care. Yes his role is vital to the offense but I think its a role that someone else can do and do better.
Originally posted by NinerG94:
I don't get the Delanie Walker love fest at all. Yes he's the "swiss army knife" of the offense but what good is that if he can't make plays outside of lining up, running motion, and blocking? You can't tell me that another TE/FB/HB can't learn all of that while also being able to make plays down the field. Not to mention they'll probably come cheaper than Walker. Walker can walk on out for all I care. Yes his role is vital to the offense but I think its a role that someone else can do and do better.

I don't buy this "great route runner" nonsense either. He gets open because teams generally don't give a f**k, they know that if you lock down Crabtree and VD, that this offense basically stalls. Additionally you can count on Delanie essentially defending himself because of all his drops. The biggest reason why he may stay with the 49ers IMO is that he'd get exposed pretty much anywhere else he went if teams actually made it a focus to cover him.


This team needs offensive playmakers, especially in the red-zone. Delanie doesn't do much of anything for you in the red-zone, he's 6 feet tall, the shortest tight-end in the NFL, so you certainly can't go up over the top to him. Give me a guy like Dion Sims, that is about 6'5", 265, can block, catch....operate as a traditional tight-end, a big threat in the red-zone that teams have to respect.
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Mar 3, 2013 at 10:28 AM ]
  • cciowa
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Originally posted by Phoenix49ers:
Originally posted by NinerG94:
I don't get the Delanie Walker love fest at all. Yes he's the "swiss army knife" of the offense but what good is that if he can't make plays outside of lining up, running motion, and blocking? You can't tell me that another TE/FB/HB can't learn all of that while also being able to make plays down the field. Not to mention they'll probably come cheaper than Walker. Walker can walk on out for all I care. Yes his role is vital to the offense but I think its a role that someone else can do and do better.

I don't buy this "great route runner" nonsense either. He gets open because teams generally don't give a f**k, they know that if you lock down Crabtree and VD, that this offense basically stalls. Additionally you can count on Delanie essentially defending himself because of all his drops. The biggest reason why he may stay with the 49ers IMO is that he'd get exposed pretty much anywhere else he went if teams actually made it a focus to cover him.


This team needs offensive playmakers, especially in the red-zone. Delanie doesn't do much of anything for you in the red-zone, he's 6 feet tall, the shortest tight-end in the NFL, so you certainly can't go up over the top to him. Give me a guy like Dion Sims, that is about 6'5", 265, can block, catch....operate as a traditional tight-end, a big threat in the red-zone that teams have to respect.
these two guys said everything right, walker is the newest version of arnez battle . highly over rated by the web zone
I don't rate Walker very high as a receiver. But as people have pointed out he is a very good blocker and space player on running play and helping spring people after the catch. I'm just wondering if we have other people who fill that exact roll and not diminish the effectiveness of our two TE offence.
  • cciowa
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Originally posted by 49erCanuck:
I don't rate Walker very high as a receiver. But as people have pointed out he is a very good blocker and space player on running play and helping spring people after the catch. I'm just wondering if we have other people who fill that exact roll and not diminish the effectiveness of our two TE offence.

it can not be that hard to find that person that you speak of either in free agency or more likely the draft
Originally posted by cciowa:
Originally posted by DonnieDarko:
he's VASTLY overrated

would i resign him? yeah

would i get a legit #2 TE to likely start over him? yeah
of course this is the truth. it can not be that hard to find a number two tight end who can both block and catch the ball, plus maybe play some special teams which we need very badly

I think Delanie is amazing on special teams but I think our offense would be better if we had a natural #2 pass catching TE
We should re-sign Walker. Does too many things in the offense and is good at it. People just look at one aspect and think he should be let go. There are areas he must improve, but he's an important guy in our offense and keeps the opposing defense honest.
Originally posted by 49ersMyLife:
We should re-sign Walker. Does too many things in the offense and is good at it. People just look at one aspect and think he should be let go. There are areas he must improve, but he's an important guy in our offense and keeps the opposing defense honest.

One aspect? Dude, catching passes is like half his job. We're not talking about a guy being too slow, or too small.......this is a huge part of his job as a TE, if it wasn't, they'd put out an offensive lineman out there who could even do a better job of blocking.

If he can't catch, he shouldn't be out there, its as simple as that. You also talk about him like he's a rookie, he's not, a long-term vet doesn't all of a sudden change his spots. If he can't catch the ball now, he won't catch it tomorrow, simple as that.


I for one think the 49ers can do A LOT better when it comes to a quality #2 TE that can both block and be a valuable and consistent weapon as a receiver.
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Mar 3, 2013 at 6:00 PM ]
Originally posted by suckafree17:
A high percentage of our O snaps were 2 TE sets and even at times 3. In my mock offseason I don't believe the 49ers will be able to retain Walker. Thus, we need to spend a draft pick on the TE position. Delanie has proven to be versital, but does that make him invaluable to us?

Get a guy who can catch consistently and we already upgraded over Walker. The dude drops too many passes and fumbles away some of the ones he actually hauls in. Delanie is a decent blocker, but I highly doubt another guy can't come in and do the same in this offensive scheme.

Basically, Walker is highly overrated and easily replaceable.