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Anthony Walker Jr. had a huge day in his first start for the Indianapolis Colts

The rookie formerly known as “The Franchise” just had his breakout game in the NFL.

NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Walker Jr.’s NFL opportunity has finally come around, and if his performance on Saturday was any indication, the former Northwestern star looks ready to take advantage of it.

Walker, the Colts’ fifth-round pick, missed some time early in the season but played sparingly even when healthy, recording just 3 tackles heading into Week 15. When starting inside linebacker Jon Bostic went down with an injury, though, Walker was thrust into action and had 4 tackles. Bostic was placed on IR, giving Walker his first career start in Saturday’s game against the Baltimore Ravens.

I’d say it went pretty well.

Walker racked up 8 tackles (5 solo, 1 TFL) and also made his mark on special teams, delivering a potentially game-saving play with this blocked punt late in the fourth quarter.

The Colts were unable to capitalize on the opportunity and dropped to 3-12 with the loss, but Walker’s performance was a bright spot. He’ll get another start in the season finale against the Houston Texans next Sunday.

It’s been a rough year for our favorite NFL quarterback, as Trevor Siemian’s hot start to the season faded quickly and he was then benched, unbenched, and knocked out for the year with a shoulder injury, so it’s important to remember that there are some former Wildcats succeeding in the league.

Green Bay Packers DE Dean Lowry, who was named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week after his pick-six a few weeks ago, had a solid game in his own right on Saturday, with 2 tackles, a QB hit and a pass defended in a loss to the Minnesota Vikings. He’s had a very nice season. Dan Vitale has been a reliable player on offense and special teams for the winless Browns.

Add Walker to the list of promising young NFL talents with Northwestern degrees. It was just one game, but he looks like a big part of the Colts’ future.