The Detroit Lions have potentially lost safety Tracy Walker for the remainder of the 2022 NFL season.
After playing only eight snaps against the Minnesota Vikings Sunday, Walker was carted off to the locker room, after suffering an apparent ankle injury.
On Monday, NFL Network reported that the team believes the talented defensive back has suffered a torn Achilles.
“We’ll know more in the morning. It doesn’t look real good, but obviously, it’s the ankle area," Lions head coach Dan Campbell told reporters, following the team's 28-24 loss to the Vikings on the road. "Possibly, it could be the Achilles. We’ll see. We’ll know more tomorrow.”
Walker had emerged as a defensive leader, and was signed to a significant contract extension this offseason.
When the 27-year-old safety agreed to the lucrative three-year, $25 million extension, Campbell embraced him, and revealed to him that he was part of the nucleus of the defense.
“I definitely had more teams, I had more money. But, at the end of the day, I know the situation might not have been the best for me,” Walker said about his extension. “This was my best situation, with everything that I was dealing with."
JuJu Hughes, Ifeatu Melifonwu and rookie Kerby Joseph will now have an opportunity to step in and fill the shoes of the defensive leader.
Veteran DeShon Elliott is the other starting safety in Aaron Glenn's defense.
Will Harris, who converted to play cornerback this year, could also be asked to return to playing safety, as he has experience at the position.