Recently, many publications have gone as far as to say that head coach Leslie Frazier should be fired if he continues to have Christian Ponder be the Vikings starting quarterback. However, Frazier may have less to do with that decision than most people think.
Despite Ponder’s lackluster performance so far this season, Frazier has come out in support of the team’s quarterback and released this statement on Tuesday:
“Christian is still injured. but yeah, he’s our starting quarterback and we’ll see how does coming out of the bye. It’s hard to be concrete when you know that Christian is dealing with an injury. So, we’ll see what happens.”
Rick Spielman was promoted to the Vikings general manager on January 3, 2012.
November 22, 2010 is when Frazier was named interim head coach.
Why are those dates important? Because NFL general managers usually like to bring in their own guys and build the organization from their own visions. Christian Ponder was part of Rick Spielman’s vision for the future of the team when he helped to select him with the 12th pick in the 2011 NFL draft. Whether or not Frazier is a part of Spielman’s plan for the Vikings in the future is unknown, but for now he inherited the job of overseeing him as the head coach.
Frazier may be even more hesitant is because of his contract situation. This offseason, the Vikings picked up an option on his contract which allows him to stay on as Minnesota’s head coach through the 2014 season. Although that sounds good for Frazier, it really isn’t. Most fans expected him to sign a contract for multiple years and secure the spot for a very long time, but that didn’t happen.
Is Frazier afraid to bench Ponder because he doesn’t want to anger his boss?
And if he doesn’t bench Ponder, is he doomed to be fired because of the team’s performance?
Or will things work out for Ponder and Frazier with everyone living happily ever after?