Why Giants' Logan Webb loved to deliver big hits as high school QB

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·4 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Why Giants' Webb loved to deliver big hits as high school QB originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

  • Programming note: Listen to "Logan Webb: Homegrown" on Giants Talk every Monday and Thursday for show segments leading up to the full TV premiere on Tuesday, Aug. 2 on NBC Sports Bay Area.

ROCKLIN  -- Logan Webb is the first homegrown Giants ace since Madison Bumgarner, and the two share a lot of similarities.

Webb has followed Bumgarner as the Giants starter most likely be found a few steps behind his manager in extra innings, hoping to talk his way into a pinch-hit at-bat. They both wear their emotions on their sleeves after tough losses, particularly against the Dodgers. While nobody can match Bumgarner's postseason resume, Webb has already shown that he thrives in a big game, and his first taste of October baseball made him a star.

Webb is fiery and competitive like Bumgarner was, but that hasn't yet played out with opposing hitters, a staple of the Bumgarner Era, when a season couldn't pass without the benches clearing. But if a hitter ever does consider charging the mound against Webb, his high school football teammates would advise that player to think twice.

Webb was a star quarterback at Rocklin High, which meant he wore a red no-contact jersey during practice. But that just meant defenders weren't supposed to hit Webb, not that he couldn't find the right time to mix things up a bit. He was known for laying out his own punishment every once in a while, a way to protect offensive teammates but also to fire up the team during lackluster practices.

"I liked hitting people," Webb said recently, smiling. "That was fun for me, getting hit, hitting people."

During an interview for "Logan Webb: Homegrown," a special that airs on NBC Sports Bay Area on Aug. 2, Webb said one of his high school football coaches jokingly referred to him as Big Ben, a nod to Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who would stand in the pocket as long as possible and had a penchant for absorbing contact. Like Roethlisberger, Webb, who was stronger than most even back then, also liked to dish it out.

Longtime friend and teammate Andrew Castle remembers Webb as a quarterback who "was never one to shy away from contact."

"(He'd) love to give you a little pop when he could in practice because I don't think you really get that as a quarterback," Castle said. "I'm sure he wished he could play a little defense, but you know, as the QB1, you've got to be a little bit protective of their arm and their health a little bit more than the rest of the players. Yeah, Logan definitely liked to stir it up at practice. He would definitely get in there no matter the red (no-contact) penny."

Webb's arm was more valuable than most. A few months after his final high school football season, he was drafted in the fourth round by the Giants. That obviously has worked out for all involved, but Webb is open about how football was an equal love back then, and maybe even now. He played his whole life and loved every part about it, and he knew that his job as quarterback -- like as a staff ace -- was to be a leader for the guys on the offensive side of the ball.

"If the defense was kind of having their way with the offense that day a little, there would be some talking and his way of kind of stopping the talking was like, 'I've got the red shirt on but I've got a little linebacker in me, too,' so he'd just lower his shoulder and then usually it would just up the intensity," said longtime friend and teammate Jake Sutton. "He would know just when to use that and when to up the intensity. He'd definitely pick his times."

RELATED: Webb recalls hilarious story about moment Giants drafted him

Webb recalls the players on the defensive side being bigger than his wide receivers, and often they would mess with them at practice and hit them as they ran through scrimmages. He felt he had to protect his guys, and while he was known for airing it out with a big arm, he would sometimes get a chance to come off a block with a full head of steam.

That's when a baseball player who has shown he loves to hit would show that he also loved to deliver a hit on the gridiron.

"We'd run a read option and (defenders) would come up to you and fake to hit you, and every once in a while when they would fake to hit me, I would throw a shoulder into them," he said. "I think it started one or two little scuffles, nothing crazy, but I was just protecting my offensive guys. They loved it, the offensive guys loved it. The defensive guys, not so much."

Download and follow the Giants Talk Podcast