Delanie Walker is not the first player to come to the Tennessee Titans from elsewhere in the NFL and make as much of a difference off the field as on it.
It’s just that the eighth-year tight end did a little more a little quicker than most.
The Titans named Walker their 2013 Community Man of the Year on Monday for his work on behalf of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).
His crusade against driving while intoxicated began earlier this year when an alleged drunk driver killed his aunt and uncle, Alice and Bryan Young, shortly after they watched Walker play in the Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49ers. In May, he lobbied the Tennessee legislature on behalf of a bill that eventually became law, which mandates the cars of first-time DUI offenders be equipped with a device similar to a breathalyzer that disables the engine if the reading is too high. He also spoke at the 2013 NFL rookie symposium on the dangers of drunk driving.
“After my auntie and uncle were killed at the Super Bowl, I made it my duty to prevent people from drinking and driving,” Walker said. “When I came to Nashville I felt like it was a great opportunity for me to open a door [to that path]. I had MADD backing me and they put me in a great situation to make a change.
“… I just really want to open people’s eyes and let them know this is a senseless act and it can be prevented.”
Walker signed with the Titans this offseason as a free agent.
Previous winners include defensive lineman Kevin Carter (2002-04), who first was recognized for his community efforts the second year after he was acquired in a trade. Linebacker David Thornton signed as a free agent in 2006 and was Community Man of the Year in 2008, and Kyle Vanden Bosch signed in 2005 but was honored in 2009.
As the Titans Community Man of the Year, Walker is now eligible for the 2013 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award.
POSTDATA: WARRANTY DEEDS