Hartman: Webb shifts from QB to full-time receiver for Vikings

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 16, 2013 - 1:00 AM

The move from quarterback to receiver was due to drafting Cordarrelle Patterson and signing Matt Cassel.

Those who thought Joe Webb had no future as a quarterback should be happy, because the former Alabama-Birmingham standout has become a full-time wide receiver for the Vikings.

Coach Leslie Frazier said the decision to shift Webb to receiver was made after the draft, when the team selected receiver Cordarrelle Patterson in the first round and also because the Vikings had signed free agent quarterback Matt Cassel.

“We had been talking about it for a while, and we made the decision that this was the way to go after we had our draft,” Frazier said.

Webb said he was told of the decision on the first day of the teams workouts.

“When I came back … Coach brought me in the office and talked to me about the different plans they had and stuff.”

Offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave said Webb has done a good job catching the ball, and there’s a belief that because of his speed the coaches figure they can use Webb as a member of special teams and in other ways on offense.

Webb was asked how different will it be moving from quarterback to wide receiver.

“It’s going to be very interesting,” he said. “I haven’t played it since my rookie minicamp, but I think I can adjust to it pretty good. You just have to put in a lot of work. Coach Stew [wide receivers coach George Stewart] will do a lot of that with me, so we’ll see what happens.”

Position not new

Playing receiver is nothing new for Webb, because he played his entire sophomore season in college at the position.

“I was kind of doing both quarterback and receiver, but I was doing more receiver,” he said. “I did that the whole year, and I got some plays here and there for my junior and senior year, but basically my sophomore year.”

But Webb did say that it is going to be a big change.

“You have a whole different world at quarterback, but I think that’s going to help me out there at receiver, having been at quarterback and knowing the coverage and how DBs run their plays,” he said.

“I think that’s going to be a big advantage for me. I always relate things that I see on the field to quarterbacks — to Christian [Ponder], to Matt Cassel, to [McLeod] Bethel-Thompson, I can tell those guys what I see out there. That will help them out a lot, my quarterback experience.

“Also, it will help the receivers out — for instance if they see a safety rotating down, different coverages that teams prepare and things like that. I think it’s going to be a big help.”

Webb’s speed — he ran a 40 yard-dash in the low 4.4s coming out of college — has proved to be a big advantage when he scrambled as a quarterback and should be an advantage as a receiver.

Webb said he is comfortable at his new position.

“I’m doing good,” he said. “I’m doing real good. I still have a long ways to go, but I’m getting better every day and that’s all you can do.

“I just take it one step at a time, one day at a time, one play at a time, and hopefully it can turn out as a success.”

Webb said the move to wideout was fine with him, and hopefully he can help the team in other ways.

“If I get the opportunity to get on the field and run around and make a couple plays, I’m sure everyone will be happy for that.

“I’m OK with whatever is best for the team. I’m a team player. Whatever we have to do for us to get back into the playoffs and continue to win ballgames, I’m all for it.”

Webb is a free agent after this season, but he wants to succeed as a wide receiver and remain with the Vikings.

“I love Minnesota,” he said. “They’ve welcomed me like a son to a father, and it’s a great city. I love playing for the fans, and I think it’s a great fan base here, great atmosphere, great place to play.”

And what will he remember about his last game at quarterback against the Packers in the playoff loss?

“Green Bay is a great team, a great team and a tough environment,” he said. “That’s a game that I look back on, learn from my mistakes, and keep moving.’’

Webb as a receiver

In his collegiate and professional career Webb has caught 33 total passes for 480 yards and four touchdowns.

In his sophomore season at Alabama-Birmingham, Webb caught 30 passes for 459 yards and three touchdowns. He was primarily used at wide receiver that year but also spent time at quarterback. He caught two more passes for 12 yards, including a touchdown reception, in his senior season at UAB.

For the Vikings Webb has caught only one pass, a 9-yard reception in 2011. He was targeted five times that year as a wideout.

Jottings

• Alex Foster, the Chicago basketball player who committed to Tubby Smith at Minnesota and had his scholarship withdrawn by Richard Pitino, the new Gophers coach, has now committed to Smith at Texas Tech.

• One factor going against the Wild’s chances of improving next year is the fact that it will play in a tougher division because of the NHL’s realignment. In the Northwest Divsion this year, the Wild regularly faced Edmonton, Calgary and Colorado, teams that finished 12th, 13th and 15th in the 15-team Western Conference. Next year, the Wild will be in a division that also includes playoff teams in Chicago and St. Louis.

• The Colorado Rockies placed former Twins outfielder Michael Cuddyer on the 15-day disabled list as he battles an inflamed disk in his neck. The Rockies believe Cuddyer, who is batting .319 with seven home runs and 23 RBI, will come off the disabled list as soon as he is able to on May 23.

• The Gophers basketball team’s new strength and conditioniong coach is Shaun Brown, who was last at Southern California but also worked at Kentucky from 1992 to ’97 and got to know Pitino at the time. And the strength coach Brown succeeded at Minnesota, Steve Felde, was quickly hired by Miami (Fla.).

• Former Gopher Trevor Mbakwe is one of 63 players working out this week at the NBA combine. Flip Saunders, the Timberwolves’s new president of basketball operations, is attending the combine along with a number of pro scouts.

• Former Gophers defensive back Michael Carter sprained a foot on the first day of his Vikings free agent workout, so he didn’t get a chance to show what he could do.

• Gophers recruit Taylor Cammarata was named the USHL player of the year after dominating the league with the Waterloo Black Hawks. Cammarata tallied 93 points (38 goals, 55 assists) in 59 regular season games. That’s the second-most goals scored in the USHL since 2002.

Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on 830-AM at 6:40, 7:40 and 8:40 a.m. and on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. shartman@startribune.com

  • related content

  • Video: SidCast: Willingham and Hicks need more hits

    Wednesday May 15, 2013

    Also, the Minnesota Wild will have trouble winning next year in their new division, the Timberwolves will be the...

  • Vikings quarterback Joe Webb (14)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Atlanta 6 FINAL
Detroit 4
Philadelphia 3 FINAL
Houston 6
St. Louis 4 FINAL
Miami 1
Baltimore 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
NY Yankees 2 FINAL
Pittsburgh 1
Chicago Cubs 6 FINAL
San Francisco 8
Los Angeles 6 FINAL
Chicago WSox 1
San Diego 4 FINAL
Seattle 9
Cleveland 9 FINAL
Cincinnati 3
Milwaukee 2 FINAL
LA Angels 3
Oakland 2 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 2
Texas 4 FINAL
Kansas City 5
Colorado 3 FINAL
Arizona 4
NY Mets 4 FINAL
Washington 5
Boston 8 FINAL
Minnesota 9
Toronto 0 FINAL
Baltimore 5
Oklahoma City 105 FINAL
Chicago 108
Dallas 23 2nd Qtr
Portland 17
Calgary 4 FINAL(SO)
Boston 3
St. Louis 1 FINAL
Philadelphia 3
Minnesota 2 FINAL
Washington 1
Toronto 2 FINAL
Tampa Bay 4
Dallas 4 FINAL(SO)
Florida 3
NY Islanders 4 FINAL
Nashville 3
Vancouver 0 3rd Prd 13:30
Arizona 2
Montreal 0 1st Prd 1:56
Los Angeles 2
Morgan State 76 FINAL
MD-Eastern Shore 89
Niagara 54 FINAL
Siena 71
Holy Cross 83 FINAL
Bucknell 90
Western Ky 88 FINAL
Charlotte 84
Navy 62 FINAL
Colgate 72
Temple 70 FINAL
East Carolina 56
UAB 59 FINAL
Fla Atlantic 62
Boston Univ 64 FINAL
Lafayette 89
American Univ 68 FINAL
Lehigh 62
Wisconsin 76 FINAL
Minnesota 63
Fairfield 33 FINAL
Saint Peters 63
Arkansas 78 FINAL
South Carolina 74
Morehead State 76 FINAL
UT Martin 65
USC Upstate 63 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 62
Lipscomb 57 FINAL
North Florida 71
Southern Ill 55 FINAL
Missouri State 48
Texas State 64 FINAL
Appalachian St 67
SC State 62 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 72
Delaware State 104 FINAL
Coppin State 92
Middle Tennessee 54 FINAL
FIU 59
Texas-Arlington 64 FINAL
Ga Southern 76
Norfolk State 80 FINAL
Hampton 69
NC A&T 58 FINAL
NC Central 69
Savannah State 57 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Southern Miss 61 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 72
Marshall 50 FINAL
Old Dominion 67
Rice 76 FINAL
TX-San Antonio 74
South Alabama 81 FINAL
Arkansas State 76
Alabama State 70 FINAL
Grambling St 46
Alabama A&M 54 FINAL
Jackson State 72
Sam Houston St 67 FINAL
Lamar 61
Georgia State 58 FINAL
ULM 50
Central Arkansas 70 FINAL
Nicholls 77
Portland State 51 FINAL
Northern Ariz 58
Southern U 72 2nd Half 0:16
Prairie View 70
Alcorn State 73 FINAL
Texas Southern 94
Houston Baptist 72 FINAL
TX A&M-CC 85
Ark-Little Rock 69 FINAL
Louisiana 75
SE Louisiana 79 FINAL
New Orleans 85
California 60 FINAL
Arizona 99
Memphis 54 FINAL
Connecticut 53
VA Commonwealth 55 2nd Half 1:00
Davidson 82
Ark-Pine Bluff 0 Postponed
Miss Valley St 0
Sacramento St 65 FINAL
Southern Utah 69
Northwestern St 66 FINAL
Stephen F Austin 92
North Texas 60 FINAL
Texas-El Paso 83
Colorado 64 FINAL
Washington 47
Idaho 63 FINAL
Weber State 74
Abilene Christian 52 FINAL
Incarnate Word 64
Eastern Wash 85 FINAL
Idaho State 81
Marist 73 2nd Half 1:32
Quinnipiac 67
Eastern Ill 64 FINAL
Belmont 97
Bradley 38 2nd Half 6:31
Drake 37
Cal State Fullerton 26 2nd Half 17:36
UC Irvine 30
CS-Northridge 25 2nd Half
Long Beach State 30
UC Riverside 33 2nd Half 18:37
UC Davis 27
Stanford 10:00 PM
Arizona State
Utah 10:00 PM
Washington St
Monmouth 68 FINAL
Canisius 56
Wake Forest 85 FINAL
(22) Syracuse 79
Saint Louis 65 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 58
Saint Peters 62 FINAL
Rider 54
UNC-Asheville 51 FINAL
Liberty 59
UNC Greensboro 44 FINAL
(17) Chattanooga 78
Michigan State 69 FINAL
Michigan 49
Arkansas 72 FINAL
Ole Miss 61
Manhattan 51 FINAL
Niagara 57
Massachusetts 63 FINAL
Richmond 67
Virginia 52 FINAL
Miami-Florida 62
Jacksonville St 45 FINAL
Belmont 55
Morgan State 65 FINAL
MD-Eastern Shore 50
Campbell 65 FINAL
Winthrop 52
Furman 65 FINAL
Samford 54
Oregon 64 FINAL
Washington St 66
Indiana 52 FINAL
(23) Rutgers 63
Pepperdine 67 FINAL
Loyola Marymount 68
Auburn 47 FINAL
(18) Texas A&M 57
Morehead St 66 FINAL
Tennessee St 81
George Mason 43 FINAL
Saint Josephs 71
Western Carolina 53 FINAL
East Tenn St 73
Arizona 62 FINAL
UCLA 80
FIU 30 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 79
Texas State 55 FINAL
Appalachian St 61
TX-Arlington 66 FINAL
Georgia Southern 41
SC State 57 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 56
Delaware State 51 FINAL
Coppin State 80
Portland 58 FINAL
Santa Clara 66
Norfolk State 49 FINAL
Hampton 64
Florida Atlantic 56 FINAL
UAB 59
NC A&T 67 FINAL
NC Central 46
Savannah State 72 FINAL
Florida A&M 51
Virginia Tech 51 FINAL
Pittsburgh 45
Central Arkansas 43 FINAL
Nicholls 53
Houston Baptist 48 FINAL
TX A&M-CC 73
Gardner-Webb 70 FINAL
Radford 56
Georgia 75 FINAL
Missouri 64
Old Dominion 67 FINAL
Marshall 55
Ark-Little Rock 68 FINAL
Louisiana 66
South Alabama 60 FINAL
Arkansas State 70
Georgia State 66 FINAL
ULM 61
Sam Houston St 73 FINAL
Lamar 92
SE Louisiana 75 FINAL
New Orleans 84
Northwestern St 45 FINAL
Stephen F Austin 56
Alabama A&M 58 FINAL
Jackson State 66
Alabama State 68 FINAL
Grambling 62
Southern U 78 FINAL
Prairie View 50
Alcorn State 55 FINAL
Texas Southern 73
Ark-Pine Bluff 0 Postponed
Miss Valley St 0
Wofford 54 FINAL
Mercer 75
Abilene Christian 72 FINAL
Incarnate Word 62
La Salle 60 FINAL
Rhode Island 65
Illinois 71 FINAL
Nebraska 86
TX-San Antonio 60 FINAL
Rice 49
Valparaiso 55 FINAL
Oakland 70
Missouri State 65 FINAL
Indiana State 56
Georgia Tech 64 FINAL
(15) North Carolina 84
Charlotte 72 FINAL
Western Ky 80
Texas-El Paso 69 FINAL
North Texas 61
Wichita State 77 FINAL
Evansville 63
Loyola-Chicago 64 FINAL
Northern Iowa 69
Bradley 70 FINAL
Drake 86
Presbyterian 62 FINAL
High Point 75
Vanderbilt 61 FINAL
(12) Kentucky 67
Colorado 75 FINAL
USC 63
San Francisco 74 FINAL
Pacific 64
Idaho State 58 FINAL
Eastern Washington 62
Weber State 42 FINAL
Idaho 71
Purdue 59 2nd Half 7:05
Minnesota 60
Cal-Irvine 34 2nd Half 15:10
Cal State Fullerton 41
Long Beach St 29 2nd Half 18:14
CS-Northridge 48
Hawaii 36 2nd Half 15:59
UC Santa Barbara 28
UC Davis 30 2nd Half 17:26
UC-Riverside 33
Northern Ariz 52 2nd Half 14:18
Portland State 38
Southern Utah 27 2nd Half 20:00
Sacramento St 61
Utah 10:30 PM
Washington
BYU 10:30 PM
St Marys-CA
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 NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is doing the best job coaching a Minnesota pro sports team?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close