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Why J’Marcus Webb Is a Good Signing for the Minnesota Vikings

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COMMENTARY | The Minnesota Vikings have claimed former Chicago Bears tackle J'Marcus Webb, a 2010 seventh-round pick, off waivers.

To make room for Webb, the Vikings waived offensive lineman Troy Kropog, finalizing the 53-man roster.

Webb, 25, is a 6-foot-7-inch, 333-pound swing tackle -- a need for the Vikings after cutting veteran tackle Brandon Keith. The Vikings claimed a young, experienced, and former starting offensive lineman as their backup swing tackle. Webb will likely only see playing time if Phil Loadholt or Matt Kalil go down with an injury.

The signing of J'Marcus Webb has drawn scrutiny from Vikings fans and put grins on Bears fans, most remembering when Jared Allen obliterated Webb and the Bears' offensive line in the 2011 season for 3.5 sacks in a game.

Webb's motivation has been questioned on multiple occasions, but he has been unfairly criticized by fans and the media. The Bears had one of the worst offensive lines in the league last year, and Webb took a majority of the heat despite having a decent season.

In fact, last season, Webb was ranked as the Bears' best offensive lineman, according to Pro Football Focus.

"Stud: I never thought I'd see the day where not only would J'Marcus Webb (-0.8) not be the weak link on this line, but also be the most consistent performer. He took a huge step forward this year in becoming an adequate left tackle. You can win football games with them."

Yes, Pro Football Focus, one of the leading sites for individual player grading, marked Webb as the Bears' most consistent performer as he took a positive step forward in the 2012 season. Let's be honest, Webb grading out as the best lineman on a porous Bears line doesn't mean much, but it is still an improvement for the Vikings over lineman Troy Kropog.

Webb had started 44 games the last three years for Chicago, but he was cut as the Bears look to revamp one of the league's worst offensive lines. The Bears are returning only one starter from last season as they look for a fresh start in front of Cutler.

As a bench player with plenty of potential to continue to grow and learn, Webb will be a solid pickup for the Vikings. Heck, he would probably be a starter on the Green Bay Packers' lousy offensive line.

Dennis Parsons is a Minnesota-area sportswriter covering the Minnesota Vikings for Vikings Central. He previously covered all Minnesota professional sports teams for Minnesota Sports News Nightly. You can email him at dennisparsons8@gmail.com or follow him on twitter @Parsons_VC.

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