Commanders Sign LB Mykal Walker

Dan Quinn clearly views scheme familiarity as a priority during his first offseason as Commanders HC. Players from his past in Dallas and Seattle have surfaced in Washington. Now, a former Quinn Atlanta charge is coming to town.

Mykal Walker signed with the Commanders on Tuesday. Quinn and the former Falcons linebacker starter were not together long, as the team fired Quinn early in the 2020 season. But he was still calling the shots when Walker was drafted in the 2020 fourth round. This will continue a busy stretch of transactions for Walker, who is now on team No. 5 over the past eight months.

Spending time with the Bears, Raiders and Steelers following his summer Atlanta exit, Walker will join some recent Quinn charges in Washington. The Commanders have signed Bobby Wagner, Dorance Armstrong, Dante Fowler and Noah Igbinoghene on defense. They also added former Cowboys center Tyler Biadasz.

Walker will presumably be aiming to find some stability in Washington. Since mid-August, three teams have cut the Quinn-era Falcons draftee. Transitioning to then-DC Ryan Nielsen‘s scheme, the Falcons waived Walker during training camp. The Bears submitted a claim but did not make room on their 53-man roster for him on cutdown day. That led Walker to the Raiders’ practice squad, but the AFC West team released him a month later. It took multiple Steelers injuries to provide another opportunity for Walker, though he did finally see action again in Pittsburgh.

Kwon Alexander and ex-Washington starter Cole Holcomb suffered season-ending injuries. This led the team to give Walker five starts during the season’s second half. Walker, 26, played in eight games with Pittsburgh and started in the team’s wild-card game in Buffalo. Walker added his fourth career interception last season. He posted two INTs and added 107 tackles (four for loss) during a 2022 season that featured 12 Falcons starts. Pro Football Focus graded Walker 55th among off-ball linebackers in 2022 and slotted him outside the top 75 at the position during his half-season run in 2023.

While Wagner will be expected to start, Walker profiles as more of a flier at this point. The Commanders still roster former first-round pick Jamin Davis, and their will pair Wagner with hybrid ‘backer Frankie Luvu. Quinn will, however, give Walker a chance to fill in behind the regulars, it would appear.

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