Troy defensive tackle Marcus Webb building on strong finish to 2017
Troy defensive tackle Marcus Webb draws comparisons these days to “Tarzan” or “Thanos,” the Marvel Comics character known for superhuman strength and speed, for good reason.
Webb, a junior out of Decatur’s Austin High School, mounted a strong showing in the weight room this offseason – adding 27 pounds to his frame. Webb first arrived at Troy as a 245-pound defensive end but will now be counted on to anchor the line from the middle with his 279-pound frame.
“He’s done a really good job in the weight room, and he’s really a different player than last year,” said Vic Koenning, the Trojans’ defensive coordinator. “He seems to be playing at a much higher level.”
That may not bode well for opposing offensive linemen given the finish Webb had to last season. In the last five games of 2017, Webb recorded 13 of his 23 total tackles, 5.5 of his 8.5 tackles for loss and three of his four sacks while backing up senior Jamal Stadom, a second-team all-Sun Belt Conference selection.
For good measure, he also blocked a field goal against Idaho and an extra point against Texas State in the stretch. Webb attributed the late-season flourish to finally understanding the defensive tackle position.
“For sure, it was a lot better fit for me than (defensive) end because personally with my speed and strength, I could utilize it better,” he said. “Once I started to get into the groove of it, it definitely was a good fit and I started playing good.”
Webb learned plenty playing behind Stadom, who also switched from defensive end to tackle in his career. Stadom registered 28 tackles (11.5 for loss) with seven sacks, an interception and a forced fumble in his last season in a Troy uniform.
“No matter how fast or strong you are, it’s still (about) technique,” Webb said of Stadom’s instructions. “That’s what separates the good from the great because you can be a great athlete, but if you don’t have great technique, you won’t get anywhere.”
Webb has selected several goals he wants to accomplish in 2018.
“Not miss as many sacks as I did last year, double my sacks and be first-team (all-conference),” he said.
With Webb’s talent and approach, Koenning expects the 6-foot-3 lineman to shine in 2018.
“We expect for him to have a dominating year,” he said. “He’s worked hard, looks the part, a great young man and (is) developing into everything we wanted.”