Sep 1, 2012; Arlington, TX, USA; ESPN sideline reporter Samantha Steele smiles while reporting on the game with the Alabama Crimson Tide playing against the Michigan Wolverines at Cowboys Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Christian Ponder Married Samantha Steele. And There's No Reason For You to Give a Crap.


I probably shouldn’t even write this post. But it’s considered a big story and I have a responsibility to hit these supposed big stories for the sake of the blog. If it weren’t for that I wouldn’t mention it at all. Because in my mind it’s not really a story. It actually makes me kind of sad that anyone is talking about this.

Well, here goes. By now you’ve probably already heard it. On Monday, Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder married ESPN personality Samantha Steele. The couple were wed at the St. Croix County Court House in Hudson, Wisconsin. Don’t ask me why they hopped over the border to get hitched. Maybe they were trying to evade the media. Maybe they hoped by getting married in some little rural Wisconsin court house the news wouldn’t get out. Maybe they just like Wisconsin. I don’t know. But they’re married now after only a brief engagement. So that’s that.

Get out your knives, weirdos who think this matters. While you’re doing that, let me speak on behalf of rational people everywhere. First off, congrats to Christian and Sam. I hope you’re happy. I mean that sincerely. And now to the fans who will say this proves Christian isn’t focused enough on football:

Could you people please move to another planet?

In no way shape or form does this matter. Maybe you wackos have forgotten that football players are human beings. They have lives outside the sport. For the most part, players’ personal lives don’t impact the way they play. Being football players is a job to them. They do all sorts of other stuff most of the time, care about all sorts of other stuff – yes, even politics – and then when it’s time to go to work, they go to work. And when work is over, work is over.

Yes we’ve heard of instances where players’ personal problems have bled into their work lives and affected their on-field performance. But those cases are exceptions. Mostly these guys are professionals who just do what they do. Christian Ponder doesn’t strike me as any different. It doesn’t seem to me that whatever problems he’s had on the field this year are related to a lack of focus or a lack of caring or a lack of work. Mostly it’s just a lack of him being any good. No amount of film study or extra throwing after practice will really change the reality that he’s mediocre at best. Living like a monk certainly won’t help.

So really, just back off the kid. It’s his life. He’s got himself a wife now. Great. So a few guys like Ben Leber for some reason think his courting and marrying this girl in the middle of the season is somehow proof that he doesn’t “get” something. I don’t get Ben Leber but whatever. He’s entitled to his opinion. To me, this is all nothing. It’s all silly media-driven nonsense. It’s all silly fans grasping for explanations and excuses. Bottom line is, Christian Ponder isn’t that good. Maybe he will be better at some point down the road. Maybe he never will be better. You know what I’m certain about? Ponder’s marital status won’t have anything to do with whether he improves as a quarterback. That’s on him and his coaches. If you ask me, the ceiling on this guy was never high to begin with. We’ll be lucky if he ever becomes much better than he is now. But if he fails to become Aaron Rodgers? Don’t blame Sam Steele. Don’t blame Ponder’s love-struck heart. If you want to get mad, get mad at Rick Spielman for overvaluing the kid in the draft.

Oh, and please fools. Don’t harp on the Wisconsin thing. It doesn’t prove he’s disloyal. You know some chump will go with that. All sorts of goofballs out there. Let’s just not talk about this anymore.

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Tags: Minnesota Vikings

  • NickMcAndrews

    Maybe they just wanted to tie the knot before the world ends on Friday.

  • Tme

    Ben Leber is right, Ponder could have waited until the end of the season. He also could have wed in ND, SD, (isn’t Steele from there), Iowa, or Canada; but then why deprive Vikings fans of another kick in the face.

  • Think Logically.

    Maybe you fail to differentiate between having a personal life and distracting a job at hand. I don’t know about you, but I am a law student, and, as such if during finals time (“crunch time”) I am completely dedicated to the task at hand. No one is suggesting that Ponder should not have a relationship, nor do we feel that he shouldn’t court someone when that opportunity presents itself, however, to get married- an ordeal that requires planning, attention and distraction if done right- right before the last two games of a season is irresponsible. No if ands or buts about it. Waiting a month or so would not prove any inconvenience. I completely disagree with your extension.

  • tc_sting

    If anyone thinks personal life doesn’t affect someone at work, whether it’s selling cars or playing football, you’ve got some reality to consider. Of course it affects people. Often in big and inopportune ways.

    I expect they got married so suddenly is because they wanted the perfect holiday montage where he is a star starting QB and she is the hot ESPN sideline reporter. It plays well in the circles of show business Or, in actual terms, it is a way to get your name promoted for free, because your skills and talents are otherwise lacking.

    If they wait till next year, the QB is likely some backup in JAC and she could be terminated for any number of reasons they terminate female reporters in sports.

  • Thorfinsky

    The first line of your story was accurate.