Joe Webb: Minutes of fame

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 29, 2011 - 10:55 AM

Joe Webb is the consummate understudy QB: He makes things happen but makes no waves.

Give Joe Webb credit. Not too many NFL quarterbacks would be this understanding while being sent back to the bench four days after posting 23 points in a 26-minute relief appearance.

They wouldn't smile as they jogged to their gadgety receiver position at the start of a mid-week practice. Nor would they be so willing to stand in the locker room afterward and offer public support to the rookie starter they've been outplaying the past month.

But that's part of Webb's charm, his appeal inside the Vikings' locker room. That, and his ability to run wild, throw better than Tim Tebow and bring pep to an offense that can use a double shot of Mountain Dew every now and again.

"Just doing my job, just what a professional needs to do," Webb said. "I can't control the decisions the coaches make. I can only control what I do on the field. If I continue to be successful on the field, something positive will come out of it."

Yes, the kid is a walking, talking cliché machine. He's got a million more just like the ones above. But the 24-year-old is either genuine or he's the Al Pacino and Morgan Freeman of his generation.

Coach Leslie Frazier has had to do a lot of thinking and talking about Webb the past month. The good kind.

Three weeks ago, Webb came off the bench at Detroit after Ponder had turned the ball over four times. In 23 minutes, he ran for 109 yards and a touchdown, threw for 84 yards and a touchdown, and rallied the Vikings from a 31-14 deficit to within 1 yard of an upset.

At Washington on Saturday, Ponder suffered a concussion with the score tied 10-10. Enter SuperJoe, who ran for 34 yards and a touchdown, passed for 84 yards and two touchdowns, and ended a six-game losing streak with four consecutive scoring drives. The 33-26 victory actually goes on Ponder's won-loss record (2-7), not that Webb seems to care who gets the credit.

"Thank God Christian is healthy," said Webb, referring to the fact Ponder was cleared to begin practicing on Wednesday and will start Sunday's game against the Bears at Mall of America Field.

"I just want to continue to be his support. To be his eyes on the field, to continue to give him advice when he comes to the sideline and just try to come out and get this win."

Not too many NFL quarterbacks would be saying that while heading back to the bench four days after reaching passer rating perfection (158.3) on five passes.

The Vikings want to remain committed to Ponder. He is, after all, a 12th overall draft pick. But Webb obviously is causing some confusion because he wasn't supposed to show this much promise as the 199th pick a year ago.

After Saturday's game, Frazier said the team would have to "take a real hard look" in the offseason at whether Webb has earned a shot to compete for the starting job in 2012. Wednesday, Frazier said Ponder is the starting quarterback, barring injury, and that the coaches need to work harder to incorporate Webb's athleticism into the team's "Blazer" package. But Frazier again left the door cracked for a possible QB competition next summer.

"I think you always want to do whatever gives your team the best chance to win," Frazier said. "Right now, Christian being our starting quarterback, that's our belief. But you always want to try to figure out what gives your team the best chance to win, period, and not let some other circumstances or events dictate who's in the starting lineup."

By the way, if the Vikings don't win Sunday, they'd be 0-6 in the NFC North, the first time in the 51-year history of the franchise that they'd finish winless within their division. Even the 1984 team that finished 3-13 went 2-6 within the NFC Central. Or, as Pro Bowl defensive end Jared Allen put it, "The fact we haven't won a division game makes you want to throw up."

At this point, one has to wonder if Webb would be starting if Sunday's game wasn't so, well, meaningless. But even as the backup, Webb said he feels like he's competing for a job. He makes a good point, considering he started the year at No. 3 and jumped over the now-dumped Donovan McNabb.

"When something like this happens, you just have to be positive about it," he said. "You can't sit down and mope around and let your teammates see you down. Continue to work hard and good things will come."

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Jets 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Baltimore 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 11/27/14 11:30 AM
Detroit
Philadelphia 11/27/14 3:30 PM
Dallas
Seattle 11/27/14 7:30 PM
San Francisco
Cleveland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Washington 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Tennessee 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
NY Giants 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Cincinnati 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Oakland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
New Orleans 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Carolina 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Arizona 11/30/14 3:05 PM
Atlanta
New England 11/30/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Denver 11/30/14 7:30 PM
Kansas City
LA Clippers 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Portland 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Orlando 6:00 PM
Cleveland
Phoenix 6:30 PM
Toronto
New York 7:00 PM
Houston
Indiana 7:30 PM
Dallas
Chicago 8:00 PM
Utah
Pittsburgh 6:00 PM
Boston
Philadelphia 6:00 PM
NY Islanders
Ottawa 6:30 PM
Detroit
Minnesota 6:30 PM
Florida
East Carolina 49 FINAL
Green Bay 66
Nevada 56 FINAL
Weber State 59
Evansville 44 2nd Half 4:48
Fresno State 40
Purdue 58 2nd Half 6:59
Kansas State 70
Dillard 3:00 PM
Alcorn State
Clemson 16 1st Half 8:13
LSU 17
Georgia State 3:30 PM
Chicago State
MD-Eastern Shore 3:30 PM
Detroit
Missouri 4:00 PM
Arizona
Austin Peay 4:30 PM
Indiana State
Milwaukee 5:00 PM
Louisiana
Marist 5:00 PM
Fla Gulf Coast
Gardner-Webb 5:30 PM
Old Dominion
Hampton 6:00 PM
Appalachian St
Grambling St 6:00 PM
Ball State
FIU 6:00 PM
Ga Southern
Jacksonville 6:00 PM
IUPU-Ft Wayne
Colgate 6:00 PM
James Madison
Savannah State 6:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona State 6:00 PM
Maryland
Santa Clara 6:00 PM
Michigan State
Western Carolina 6:00 PM
Oakland
SE Louisiana 6:00 PM
Tenn Tech
Bucknell 6:00 PM
Toledo
Villanova 6:00 PM
VA Commonwealth
Nicholls 6:00 PM
Wake Forest
East Tenn St 6:00 PM
Winthrop
Murray State 6:00 PM
Xavier
Eastern Wash 6:30 PM
Indiana
Stephen F Austin 7:00 PM
Baylor
Lipscomb 7:00 PM
Belmont
Brown 7:00 PM
Illinois
Pepperdine 7:00 PM
Iowa
Rider 7:00 PM
Kansas
Prairie View 7:00 PM
Memphis
Clayton State 7:00 PM
Miss State
Miss Valley St 7:00 PM
TCU
TX A&M-Int 7:00 PM
Incarnate Word
Oregon State 7:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Hawaii 7:30 PM
San Francisco
Seton Hall 8:00 PM
Illinois State
NJIT 8:00 PM
Marquette
Stetson 8:00 PM
New Mexico St
Florida A&M 8:00 PM
Wyoming
Pittsburgh 8:00 PM
Chaminade
Alabama 8:30 PM
Iowa State
Michigan 8:30 PM
Oregon
Colorado Christian 8:30 PM
Northern Colorado
Chadron State 8:30 PM
South Dakota St
Western Mich 9:00 PM
San Diego
SIU Edwardsville 9:05 PM
Portland State
Tulsa 10:00 PM
Auburn
BYU 10:30 PM
San Diego St
Ohio U 11/25/14 6:00 PM
Miami-Ohio
LSU 11/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas A&M
(6) TCU 11/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Northern Ill 11/28/14 10:00 AM
Western Mich
Nebraska 11/28/14 11:00 AM
Iowa
Western Ky 11/28/14 11:00 AM
(19) Marshall
UCF 11/28/14 11:00 AM
So Florida
Houston 11/28/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Akron 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Kent State
Ball State 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Bowling Green
Buffalo 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Massachusetts
Toledo 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Arkansas 11/28/14 1:30 PM
(17) Missouri
Navy 11/28/14 2:00 PM
South Alabama
(13) Arizona State 11/28/14 2:30 PM
(12) Arizona
Stanford 11/28/14 2:30 PM
(9) UCLA
(21) Colorado State 11/28/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
Virginia 11/28/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
East Carolina 11/28/14 7:30 PM
Tulsa
North Texas 11/29/14 11:00 AM
TX-San Antonio
Old Dominion 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Fla Atlantic
(16) Georgia Tech 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(8) Georgia
Kentucky 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(24) Louisville
So Carolina 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(23) Clemson
West Virginia 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
Rice 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Louisiana Tech
Michigan 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(7) Ohio State
Purdue 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Indiana
Illinois 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Northwestern
Cincinnati 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Temple
NC State 11/29/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Syracuse 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Louisiana 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Troy
Utah 11/29/14 12:00 PM
Colorado
Texas State 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Idaho 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Appalachian St
Wyoming 11/29/14 2:00 PM
New Mexico
New Mexico St 11/29/14 2:00 PM
Arkansas State
UAB 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(4) Miss State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Notre Dame 11/29/14 2:30 PM
USC
(10) Michigan State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Penn State
(22) Minnesota 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(14) Wisconsin
(5) Baylor 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Texas Tech
Florida 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
Rutgers 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Maryland
San Jose St 11/29/14 2:30 PM
San Diego St
Tennessee 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Kansas 11/29/14 3:00 PM
(11) Kansas State
Connecticut 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Memphis
BYU 11/29/14 3:30 PM
California
ULM 11/29/14 5:00 PM
Ga Southern
Middle Tennessee 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Hawaii 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Fresno State
Wake Forest 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Duke
Pittsburgh 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Miami-Florida
(15) Auburn 11/29/14 6:45 PM
(2) Alabama
(3) Oregon 11/29/14 7:00 PM
Oregon State
Utah State 11/29/14 9:15 PM
(25) Boise State
Washington 11/29/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Nevada 11/29/14 9:30 PM
UNLV
Montreal 24 FINAL
Hamilton 40
Edmonton 18 FINAL
Calgary 43
Grambling 51 FINAL
George Washington 89
Saint Louis 57 FINAL
Vanderbilt 75
NW Nazarene 18 1st Half 7:54
Idaho State 28
Millersville 4:30 PM
Delaware State
NC State 5:00 PM
Tulane
Harvard 5:00 PM
(2) Notre Dame
Austin Peay 5:00 PM
Chattanooga
Brescia 5:00 PM
Morehead St
Tennessee St 6:00 PM
(4) Tennessee
Troy 6:00 PM
Florida A&M
Sam Houston St 6:00 PM
South Dakota St
UNC Greensboro 6:00 PM
Longwood
Rhode Island 6:00 PM
Columbia
Western State 6:00 PM
Northern Colorado
TX A&M-CC 6:00 PM
Rice
Cornell 6:00 PM
Fairfield
St Johns 6:00 PM
Marist
Bradley 6:00 PM
Stony Brook
Mount Ida 6:00 PM
UMass Lowell
Thomas (GA) 6:00 PM
Georgia State
Loyola-Maryland 6:00 PM
(10) Maryland
Barton 6:00 PM
UNC-Asheville
Campbell 6:00 PM
Western Carolina
North Florida 6:00 PM
Samford
Prairie View 7:00 PM
(7) Texas A&M
Eastern Washington 7:00 PM
Abilene Christian
Missouri State 7:00 PM
Oral Roberts
Cal-Irvine 7:00 PM
South Dakota
Quinnipiac 7:00 PM
Holy Cross
East Tenn St 7:05 PM
Indiana State
(5) Stanford 8:00 PM
New Mexico
Sacramento St 8:00 PM
St Marys-CA
Cal State Fullerton 8:00 PM
Weber State
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Grade the Vikings offense

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close