Wesley Darcel Walker (born May 26, 1955) is a former professional American football wide receiver that played for the New York Jets from 1977 to 1989.
Walker graduated from Carson High School in Carson, California where he set many receiving and return records, and was an All-American at the University of California.
He was noted for his great speed, averaging over 20 yards per reception over many seasons (his career average was 19 yards per reception). At the time of his retirement, he was second in Jets all-time receiving yardage. Legally blind in one eye, Walker overcame this handicap to become one of the Jets all-time great receivers.
He led the league in receiving yards in 1978, was elected to the Pro Bowl twice 1978 and 1982, and was named the New York Jets MVP in 1978.
Walker was one of the dominant players in the 1982 NFL Playoffs: in two postseason games, he caught 15 passes for 314 yards and 2 touchdowns, as the Jets beat the Cincinnati Bengals and the Los Angeles Raiders, both on the road.
His best receiving season came in 1983, when he caught 61 receptions; and in 1986 he had a career-best 12 receiving touchdowns. Four of them were scored in week three, as he caught a game-winning touchdown from the Jets quarterback Ken O'Brien in overtime to give the Jets a wild shootout win 51-45 over the Miami Dolphins.
When he retired, he had caught 438 passes for 8306 yards and 71 touchdowns.
Walker is now a physical education teacher at Park View Elementary School in Kings Park, New York, and an occasional sports radio show commentator. He has two sons and a daughter. His older son, John, was a 3x All-American lacrosse player at The United States Military Academy at West Point. His younger son, Austin, played lacrosse at Johns Hopkins University. He is also the godfather of Alexandra Florant, the daughter of the track and field star Carl Florant.
By Dean Hanley
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