Moeller: Webb Will Take Center Stage

The Davis Webb mystery continues and deepens.

On Tuesday afternoon during an afternoon interview on WFAN, Webb confirmed that he was told by former head coach Ben McAdoo that he would play in the final three games last season.

Well, Eli Manning was back after a Geno Smith experiment, and McAdoo was soon gone.

Webb didn’t play a single down in an NFL regular-season game.

There is an old adage that if a “quarterback doesn’t play a down, he can’t play in the league.”

Not always true, but a good indicator. Just ask Christian Hackenberg.

This summer, he and Manning have been digesting a new offense under head coach Pat Shurmur, and the early reports have been good. Webb came into camp as the No. 2 quarterback.

Thursday night against the Browns, Webb is expected to get significant playing time to prove himself.

And he should.

Webb basically was relegated to the scout team with Smith and Josh Johnson in camp last year.

The 6-5, 230-pounder strong arm third-round 2017 pick from California  has adopted a new approach and has been in the camp spotlight more this year.

“Sometimes at practice, especially in training camp, I want to be a little bit more aggressive, so I know I can’t make that throw or I know if it’s a throw that’s a tight window, I want to try and make it in practice,” said Webb.

“I want to see if I can make it or not so when the game comes. I see that same look and I know I can’t make it. Check down and move on to the progressions. During practice, I kind of approach it two different ways. If it’s a game-like situation, I approach it like a game-like situation, but if it’s team blitz, I’m being aggressive. I’m trying to be really aggressive throwing the football.”

After he completed 18 of 34 passes for 190 yards and was sacked once in the preseason last year, Webb was expected to see time during the disastrous campaign.

Considering the state of the Giants’ line and dysfunctional state then, maybe it wasn’t idea after all. Webb could have benefitted from the time, but he also could have fodder for the defenses.

With Shurmur, Webb will get an opportunity. He won’t replace Manning unless the veteran shows his age.

However, Shurmur won’t tip his hand too early.

“I like his skill set,” said Shurmur about Webb. “He’ll play throughout the preseason like the other quarterbacks.”

So, the scene is set.

Over the next month, Webb will be scrutinized to see if he can be Manning’s heir apparent.

He has the tools, and it can make life a lot easier a few years down the road.

About the Author

Jeff Moeller

Jeff Moeller has been covering the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and college football and basketball as well as high school sports on a national and local scene for the past 39 years. He has been a Jets and Giants beat reporter for the past 13 years.

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