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Additional Minnesota Viking Commentary

53 Man Roster of 2013
There has been allot of heat applied as it relates to Joe Webb and the 53 man roster but there are several things to consider before you throw this baby out with the bath water.

1) In regard to Joe Webb's play at quarterback, all the Ponder supporters point to Joe's playoff loss versus the packers

Ponder versus Rodgers December 2, 2012
Webb versus Rodgers January 5, 2013

Most seem to forget that Ponder did in fact play in Green Bay where Joe Webb actually outperformed Christian Ponder in both quarterback rating (68.75 versus 41.92) and overall quarterback rating of 14.5 versus 9.7.  This was without Joe knowing that he was starting a playoff game in historic Lambeau field about an hour before kickoff.  It was also without first team reps all year and without throwing a pass all year long. 
2) Although Joe Webb was pushed down the depth chart upon the arrival of Matt Cassel, forcing Joe's decision in regard to the developmental QB versus moving to Wide Receiver, he was a proven as he has won as a proven back-up and versus playoff teams.  On the other hand, like Ponder's NFL record, Matt Cassel is laced with an astounding turn over ratio, which is major risk if Ponder fails. 
3) Ponder's career is laced with Red Flags.  It's a good thing that the old Rich Stadium uses artificial turf as if it were grass ... the rag doll ... AKA Ponder would have taken home turf with him.  Although in 2008, he started and completed all 13 games, his statistics were not stellar 14 TD versus 13 interceptions.  In 2009 he suffered a season ending shoulder injury.  2010 was a season full of injury setbacks.  In his rookie season ... same thing and last year we enter the playoffs with an injured quarterback that can't play in the Green Bay rematch.  Investing heavily in either Matt Cassel or Ponder at this point is more than just slight risk.
4) Joe Webb's resume is filled with astounding events & statistics which should have presented him with opportunities.  For some reason he's been passed over that have been passed to others. 
5) Inside the red zone, particularly inside the 5 yard line, Cordarrelle Patterson is still unproven at this point however he should quickly rise and be slotted as our #2 receiver.  Greg Jennings is more noted for striking the end zone at a distance rather that within the tight-red-zone at 5'11".  Jarius Wright is an open field runner best suited as a slot receiver but may prove to be useless in the red zone at a generous 5'10".  Jerome Simpson is still a liability catching the slant and is unproven risk converting 3rd downs.  Stephen Burton came out of nowhere.  At this juncture we all need to reserve our opinion on Stephen but its clear to see that both Bobby Felder and Stephen Burton is a definite upgrade over Marcus Sherels.  Sherels is a 1 square inch of tarp needed to cover a 10 foot diameter tank of cow manure ... in other words he can't cover ... As for Joe Webb he has a vertical leap that's been sorely missing since the departure of Sidney Rice and as Mr. Jennings said ... he catches everything.
6) Sure it's nice to compare Joe Webb with things that we are most comfortable with however it's the intangibles that we should be considering.  Some time this year we will be facing last second situational football where Joe is as versatile as anyone at safety.  He could be the difference between knocking down a desperation Hail Mary and sinking our season without him.  Sure Jamarca Sanford is a load but even though he caught a duck versus the Bill's he still has hands of stone and he cannot climb the ladder like Joe when it put up high for the likes of Calvin Johnson.  
7) As a gunner Joe Webb can bull rush and run players over.  His blocking skills due to his size, speed and ability to juke ... much like Everson Griffen ... give him a major advantage over other special teamers.

When it comes down to the 53 man roster selecting your crew will always come down to versatility.  Sure, Joe Webb may be rough and raw as a receiver but so was Stephen Burton.     

Jared, I got your message.  Keep in mind 5 million on the table could secure you a long term deal as well as get Everson Griffen under a long term deal.  That's your future.  This has got to get done before the opening kickoff.  If the offer isn't made within this time frame ... then destiny spins.  Hey, it's not like the roof is going to collapse again.  

The Viking Ghost Writer
August 18, 2013