FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Delanie Walker always plays angry. It's how he's survived 10 years in the NFL.
On Sunday, the Titans tight end had a little extra juice.
So when he got his hands on the football midway through the fourth quarter, he let off some steam on his way to the end zone on a 57-yard scoring reception. The play was the biggest highlight for the Titans in a 33-16 loss to the Patriots.
"I probably could have been more angry because (the Patriots) were doing a great job of stopping me. I wasn't getting the ball like I usually got it prior weeks,'' Walker said afterward. "I knew I didn't have too many opportunities, and once I got my opportunity I was going to try and make the most of it."
Boy, did it. After catching the pass from quarterback Zach Mettenberger, Walker ran through Patriots safety Patrick Chung and another defender, and then stiff-armed Patriots defensive back Jordan Richards downfield. Walker ended up in the end zone after outracing everyone else downfield, making the score 27-16 at the time.
"I have been around Delanie for two years now and that is expected,'' Mettenberger said. "When he gets the ball in his hands he is going to break tackles, and he is going to take it a long way."
Other Titans were impressed:
"It was just a great individual effort, run after catch to make that kind of play is really indicative of what he's done since he's been here, and this year is no different,'' Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey said of Walker. "He's made plays every chance he's had a possibility to do that."
"He just wasn't going down with the first tackle,'' receiver Dorial Green-Beckham said of Walker. "Stuff like that gets you going."
Walker scored earlier on a seven-yard touchdown pass from Mettenberger.
A week after breaking Frank Wycheck's record for catches in a season, Walker set another record on Sunday – he broke his own franchise record for the most receiving yards in a season by a tight end. Walker set the record in 2014 with 890 yards.
He now has 76 receptions for 935 yards and six touchdowns in 2015. Walker had two catches for 64 yards against the Patriots.
The 57-yard score at New England was the fourth-longest reception of Walker's career. Walker's two scores gave him 24 career touchdown receptions, including six in 2015. That matches the highest total of his 10-year career, equaling the six touchdown catches he had in 2013.
This week, Pro Bowl teams are scheduled to be announced.
Titans guard Byron Bell, like many others, believes Walker deserves to be on the team.
"Delanie is a fighter. He is one of the best tight ends in this league and it's a shame he gets overlooked by guys like Gronk and Olsen and some of these other guys,'' Bell said of New England's Rob Gronkowski, and Carolina's Greg Olsen.
"If he doesn't make it to the Pro Bowl this year, it's b.s. He has been one of the best tight ends in this league and he has he has earned it. He has fought for every yard he has gotten this year. I am lobbying for him because he deserves to be in Hawaii representing the Tennessee Titans."