VIKINGS: Rookie QB Webb says he'll do fine 'once I get that passing down'

ST. PAUL Vikings rookie quarterback Joe Webb said he believes he is half as good as Philadelphia Eagles counterpart Michael Vick. Asked where he would rank on a scale of one to 10, with Vick being a 10, Webb said: "A five. Michael Vick is playing...



Vikings rookie quarterback Joe Webb said he believes he is half as good as Philadelphia Eagles counterpart Michael Vick.

Asked where he would rank on a scale of one to 10, with Vick being a 10, Webb said: "A five. Michael Vick is playing great ball this year."

Vick, a most valuable player candidate, has guided the Eagles' offense to the NFL's top ranking. His 103.6 quarterback rating tops the NFC and ranks just behind New England's Tom Brady (109.9) and San Diego's Philip Rivers (105.7) in the league.

Vick has passed for 2,755 yards and 20 touchdowns, and rushed for 613 yards and a team-leading eight touchdowns.


"Michael Vick is an incredible athlete, a great player. I look up to him. I've been watching him since I was a little boy," Webb said.

Webb, who is being prepped to start Sunday's game in Philadelphia because Brett Favre is recovering from a concussion, creates issues for defenses because of his ability to scramble and take off running.

He scored on a 13-yard run in Monday night's loss to the Chicago Bears.

"Once I get that passing down, I'll be all right," Webb said.

With Favre and Tarvaris Jackson (toe) hobbled by injuries, the Vikings have turned to Webb, a sixth-round draft pick from Alabama-Birmingham, to lead the offense in these last two games and audition for a job that is wide open for 2011, with Favre insisting he'll retire and Jackson facing free agency.

"I think about that, but my focus is right now," Webb said. "I want to get better play by play, day by day. That's later down the road. If I play well now, the future will take care of itself."

Winfield fined: The NFL informed cornerback Antoine Winfield that he has been fined a total of $17,500 for a uniform infraction and for helmet contact on Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler in Monday night's 40-14 loss to the Bears, according to Winfield's agent, Ashanti Webb.

Winfield will appeal the $7,500 helmet fine stemming from a play in which the 5-foot-9 cornerback connected with the 6-3 Cutler's chin on a blitz play. According to Webb, Winfield tried to pull up to avoid a helmet-to-helmet hit, but Cutler's chin got caught as Winfield wrapped him up.


Webb said the uniform infraction apparently involved the height of Winfield's socks.

Vikings defensive end Ray Edwards leads the team with $32,500 worth of fines dating to the preseason.

Favre update: Favre failed his baseline neurological examination for the second straight day and remained on the sidelines wearing a baseball cap during the portion of practice open to the media.

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said the team would evaluate Favre up until Saturday, when the Vikings travel to Philadelphia for their Sunday night game against the Eagles. At this point, however, Favre has not been able to pass basic cognitive tests that would allow him to return to the practice field.

"Not much improvement for him," Frazier said. "He'd have to do some exercise and still (have) no symptoms, so we're not even at that point yet."

Meanwhile, the NFL is running out of time to discipline Favre after a lengthy investigation, and nothing is likely to happen in the second-to-last week of the regular season.

The NFL will not have a pre-Christmas ruling on whether Favre acted inappropriately toward former New York Jets employee Jenn Sterger when both were with the team in 2008, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said.

The league launched an investigation in early October after published inappropriate pictures Favre allegedly sent to Sterger.


After the Philadelphia game, the Vikings finish the season at Detroit on Jan. 2. Favre repeatedly has said that this will be his last season.

Peterson back: Running back Adrian Peterson returned to practice after missing Monday night's game with a right thigh injury and said he expects to play Sunday.

"I'm definitely looking forward to it," he said.

Peterson was injured Dec. 13 against the Giants when he collided with Jackson in the backfield.

"He lined up in his normal position and did the things we needed to see so he's improving," Frazier said.

Briefly: Safeties Madieu Williams and Tyrell Johnson missed practice while recovering from concussions.

Defensive tackle Kevin Williams missed practice to deal with a personal matter, Frazier said.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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