Ponder’s numbers in his rookie season weren’t very pretty. This is probably why so many people are quick to say our team messed up drafting him so early. What a lot of those people don’t take into account, is all that Christian had working against him this past season. I think it’s fair to say our team had at least ONE of the worst pass-blocking offensive lines in the NFL this year, if not THE worst. It’s hard enough for a veteran starter to get his feet set and make good reads with that kind of blocking(or lack thereof), let alone a rookie who didn’t get to start from day one, thanks to the Donovan McNabb Show(or once again, lack thereof). Also, let us not forget that we don’t have a true deep threat wide receiver on the team. Percy Harvin is one of the greatest things since sliced bread, but he’s not that big, tall Randy Moss-like deep ball catching kind of player we’re missing. On top of all this working against Mr. Ponder, there was that little thing called the lock-out! So much was missed out on because of that stupid lock-out! A lot of people don’t take that into account.
In closing, let me just throw a few names and numbers at you. These numbers are from the following guys’ 1st season in the NFL as starting QB’s. First off our boy Christian Ponder: 13 TD’s & 13 INT’s. Matthew Stafford: 13 TD’s & 20 INT’s. Drew Brees: 17 TD’s & 16 INT’s. Peyton Manning: 26 TD’s & 28 INT’s. Am I saying Ponder is the next Drew Brees or Peyton Manning? Maybe, maybe not. Only time will tell that. What I am saying for sure is that a lot of people who think we made a mistake in the first round of the 2011 Draft need to just cool their jets a bit, take into account what diversity our rookie QB faced this season, look at the positives he showed us against Chicago in his first real NFL action, and against Green Bay in that first meeting, and just give the kid some time to develop! Oh, and a really awesome offensive tackle and deep threat wide receiver would help too!