The Titans finished 9-7 last season, losing their season finale to finish short of the postseason. But all the Titans have heard all offseason is how good their first opponent is.
The Browns grace the cover of Sports Illustrated and have been featured prominently in GQ and ESPN the Magazine.
They are favored to beat the Titans on Sunday.
“The Tennessee Titans have always been under the radar. What’s new?’’ Walker said Monday, via Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “So I expect them to talk about the Cleveland Browns. Cleveland this, Cleveland that. We’re going to go in there and play football. As a group, we’ve just got to handle the noise and play our game.”
The Browns, who went 7-8-1 last season, have added receiver Odell Beckham, defensive end Olivier Vernon, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, defensive back Morgan Burnett and running back Kareem Hunt in the offseason. (Hunt will miss the first eight games while serving a suspension.)
That has made the Browns the talk of the NFL and a favorite to contend in the AFC North.
“That’s the NFL,’’ Walker said. “They like to pick the team they assume is going to be Super Bowl champs because they’ve got guys on that team that I guess they can turn a whole organization around, just two or three guys. But, hey, that’s how it goes. I like that they get the hype. You’ve just got to go in there and play football, you know what I mean?’’
It’s bulletin board material, but NFL players shouldn’t need bulletin board material to get motivated for the season opener.