Fulton Luther Walker Jr. (April 30, 1958 – October 12, 2016) was a professional American football cornerback who played for the Miami Dolphins (1981-1985) and Los Angeles Raiders (1985-1986) in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at West Virginia University. He graduated from Martinsburg High School and West Virginia University.
|Born:||April 30, 1958|
Martinsburg, West Virginia
|Died:||October 12, 2016 58) (aged|
Martinsburg, West Virginia
|Height:||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Weight:||193 lb (88 kg)|
|High school:||Martinsburg (WV)|
|NFL Draft:||1981 / Round: 6 / Pick: 154|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at PFR|
On defense, Walker recorded five interceptions during his career, which he returned for 62 yards. His main contributions came as a punt and kickoff returner on special teams, recording a total of 145 punt returns for 1,437 yards and 167 kickoff returns for 3,779 yards and a touchdown. Walker's best season was in the strike shortened nine-game season of 1982, when he recorded three interceptions on defense and 433 kickoff return yards, assisting his team to a championship appearance in Super Bowl XVII. In 1985, he recorded an NFL record 692 punt return yards. This would stand as a record until 1996 when it was surpassed by Desmond Howard's 870 yards.
Walker is best remembered for his performance on special teams in Super Bowl XVII and Super Bowl XIX. In Super Bowl XVII, Walker recorded four kickoff returns for 190 yards and a touchdown, setting Super Bowl records for most kick return yards and highest single game yards-per-return average (47.5). This included a record 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the second quarter, the first kickoff ever to be returned for a touchdown in Super Bowl history. He also had a 42-yard return that set up a Dolphins field goal. His contributions helped the Dolphins maintain a lead in the game until late in the fourth quarter, despite Miami quarterback David Woodley being limited to just four completions in the entire game. In Super Bowl XIX, Walker contributed 93 kickoff return yards and 15 yards returning punts.
Life after football
In honor of his special teams highlights, the West Virginia Sports Writers Association gives out the Fulton Walker Award each year to the state's top high school special teams player.
Walker was born and lived in Martinsburg, West Virginia, where he was the victim of a violent break-in at his home in August 2013. One of the men involved in the crime, during which Walker was beaten and assaulted, was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
- Rick Kozlowski (December 15, 2014). "Musselman's Glover wins Fulton Walker Award". Charleston Daily Mail. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
- Edward Marshall (August 31, 2013). "Ex-NFL player victim in robbery". The Journal. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
- Edward Marshall (August 13, 2014). "Man gets 18-year sentence for robbery of ex-NFL player". The Journal. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
- Rick Kozlowski (October 13, 2016). "Former Martinsburg, NFL football star Fulton Walker dies at age 58". The Journal. Retrieved October 13, 2016.
- Career statistics at Database Football.com