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Hall of Fame TE Shannon Sharpe a Fan of Delanie Walker


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Shannon Sharpe is rarely at a loss for words.

The outspoken Hall of Famer, co-host of Fox Sports' "Skip and Shannon: Undisputed," had a lot to say when asked about Titans tight end Delanie Walker, and his status among the NFL's best at his position.

"I pay a lot of attention to his game,'' Sharpe said. "I think Delanie Walker is a phenomenal talent. He is a big kid that can run. And I am happy to see that he is getting an opportunity to show it because when I watched him in San Francisco, I always said, 'Man, this guy can really play if he just got opportunities to show what he can do.'

"Well, he is in a system in Tennessee where they are going to give him opportunities. They know how to use him, and they've done a great job of getting him the football. I love what I am seeing with him. And Marcus Mariota is only going to get better throwing the football, so Delanie's role will only increase."

Sharpe caught 815 passes for 10,060 yards and 62 touchdowns during his playing days with the Broncos and Ravens from 1990-2003.

Walker, coming off his second straight Pro Bowl season, has totaled 282 catches for 3,349 yards and 23 touchdowns since joining the Titans prior to the 2013 season. Walker spent his first seven seasons with the 49ers. In his career, he's caught 405 passes for 4,814 yards and 31 touchdowns.

Sharpe believes Walker is one of the game's best tight ends.

"He is a top 5 tight end in the league,'' Sharpe said.

"Obviously when he's healthy, it all starts with Gronk,'' Sharpe continued, referring to Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski. "But you look at Travis Kelce (in Kansas City) and you look at Greg Olsen (in Carolina) and Delanie Walker is right there in that group, among the very best. He is a special talent and he deserved to go to the Pro Bowl."

Sharpe, who spoke to Titans Online in Houston leading up to Super Bowl LI, said he remembers the battles with the Titans during his playing days.

Back then, tight end Frank Wycheck was catching passes from quarterback Steve McNair. Wycheck holds the club's records for catches (482), receiving yards (4,958) and touchdowns (27) by a tight end, but Walker is gaining on him.

"Frank was always Steve's security blanket," Sharpe said of Wycheck. "He was a very solid tight end and he made a lot of plays on third down, and when he got into the red zone. He was a heck of a football player.

"But Delanie is different. He is a little bigger, a little faster and a little shiftier with his hips. Delanie Walker is one of these rare tight ends where he could take a five-yard route and go 65 to 70 yards and punish you while he's getting there. I love his game." looks back at TE Delanie Walker's 2016 Pro Bowl season. (AP Photos)

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