By Tom Robinson
© April 25, 2013
Current NFL rosters list four players who helped William and Mary beat Virginia on the day cornerback B.W. Webb intercepted three passes in his collegiate debut.
Webb is now poised to join the four - Adrian Tracy, Sean Lissemore, David Caldwell and Jonathan Grimes - maybe as early as Friday's Day 2 of the NFL draft.
"I think he's a late-two to mid-three" is how Mike Mayock, the NFL Network's analyst, appraised his 67th-ranked prospect. "I love B.W. Webb."
Webb might return the love if he monitored such commentary, which he said he doesn't.
Nor is Jimmye Laycock, the Tribe head coach, big on pre-draft blather.
"It all boils down to getting picked and then making a team," Laycock said. "Wherever you get picked, there are no guarantees. You've got to earn your spot. B.W. recognizes that, and I'm sure he'll do that."
If so, Webb will join yet another ex-teammate as a pro, new San Diego Chargers cornerback Derek Cox. Cox mentored Webb as a redshirt before being drafted in the third round by Jacksonville in 2009.
"I pretty much stayed in his hip pocket," Webb told reporters at February's NFL combine, where he excelled at the vertical jump and change-of-direction shuttle drills.
Those lessons helped Webb impress at the combine and Senior Bowl, and dispel concerns about playing at the FCS level.
"At no part of this process was I intimidated," said Webb, who attended Warwick High in Newport News. "I always had confidence in myself and confidence in my game."
Webb said he took private trips to three NFL cities - Dallas, Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh, where the Steelers' head coach is Mike Tomlin, the former William and Mary receiver also from Newport News.
"We're pretty much from the same area," Webb said, "so I see him all the time."
If Tomlin winds up seeing Webb, who's 5-foot-10, 184 pounds, daily as a Steelers rookie, Mayock said it will be due in part to his versatility.
"What's going to keep him in the late second-round discussion are his return skills," Mayock said. "It's not a great punt-return class, and he's one of the top three or four punt returners in the country."
Webb averaged 12.6 yards in 70 returns, but logged only 21 the past two seasons because opponents tried to avoid kicking to him, Laycock said.
"He's a very gifted athlete," Laycock said. "He's got a lot of confidence, which he's shown from day one. He's not as big as some, but he's never backed off from it. He'll compete with anybody."
Five former teammates included.
"We've created a little bit of a presence in the NFL," Laycock said. "People have looked at B.W. very closely, and they feel he has a great chance, too."
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