Webb to wideout not happening

The Vikings discussed the option of moving rookie quarterback Joe Webb to receiver, but Brad Childress said that isn't happening.

The aftermath of the Sidney Rice hip surgery has become something of a whodunit around Winter Park. Questions abound as to whether Rice knew that he needed surgery earlier, but did nothing in hopes of getting a contract extension first. While the Vikings toed the company line Tuesday and said there was no differentiation between making a business decision or football decision, the loss of Rice and questions surrounding Percy Harvin's health have made one of the strongest positions on the Vikings one of the more tenuous.

The Vikings reportedly inquired about the asking price for Chargers receiver Vincent Jackson – a steep price that would require at least one high-round draft choice for San Diego and Jackson's contract demands for a new five-year, $50 million compensation. That's too much for the Vikings given Jackson's history off the field.

But there are other options as well – a trade with Dallas for Roy Williams or Patrick Crayton could make sense as a short-term option. The signing of Javon Walker is one step in that direction. Others may follow.

But it appears one thing we won't be seeing is quarterback Joe Webb being moved to wide receiver. Webb, who was a quarterback in college but drafted to be a wide receiver, was quickly moved back to QB in his final day of rookie minicamp and has been wearing the red jersey ever since.

Head coach Brad Childress said that, while viewed as a potential option, moving Webb was a notion quickly dismissed.

"We discussed it," Childress said of potentially moving Webb back to wide receiver. "But, he would have been a work in progress there as well. If you remember, he played quarterback last year, so we would have been working with a rough piece of clay there. Obviously, he is a superb athlete, but he needs to work at what he is doing right now."

Of all the receiver options at the Vikings' disposal, this is one that it would appear can be checked off the list.


  • To make room on the roster for Walker, the Vikings waived running back Ryan Moats. Moats, who spent last season with the Texans, had played for the Eagles when Childress was the offensive coordinator. However, that player was a far cry from the one that showed up to Vikings training camp. Moats was the least impressive back too often during training camp drills, so his release doesn't came as any great surprise.

  • The Vikings aren't the only team dealing with issues with star players. In the midst of a holdout by Pro Bowl cornerback Darrelle Revis, the Jets signed center Nick Mangold to a record-setting contract extension that is expected to pay the center about $7 million a year.

  • The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that, after the Vikings learned of Rice's condition, they contacted the Chargers about the status of holdout wide receiver Vincent Jackson. It's doubtful any inquiries were overly serious, since Jackson will want as much or more money than Rice, has sat out training camp and, once he does sign, will have to serve a three-game suspension.

  • Percy Harvin missed practice Tuesday. Childress said he won't be cleared to practice with the team until he passes all of the medical protocols.

    John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.

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