Dec 1, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder (7) calls a play during the first quarter against the Chicago Bears at Mall of America Field at H.H.H. Metrodome. The Vikings defeated the Bears 23-20 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Is The Christian Ponder Experiment Over?

That’s right.  It’s that time of year again for Vikings fans to start wondering who their quarterback will be for next season.  The team will have plenty of signal callers to choose from this offseason, but who the team ultimately chooses will depend on what Rick Spielman and the new coaching staff think is best.

Odds are good that the team will be moving on from former first round draft pick Christian Ponder.  Although a team captained by Ponder had a 10-6 record and a playoff birth in 2012, he failed to make a good impression in 2013.  During this season, he was hindered by injuries and miscues.  However, the numbers tell a bit of a different story.

Nov 24, 2013; Green Bay, WI, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder (7) warms up before game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Christian Ponder had the highest completion percentage of his career this year.  He completed 63.6% of his passes.  Not only that, but he had the highest number of yards per pass attempt of his career.  He averaged 6.9 yards per pass this year.  Despite these numbers, they didn’t translate into success for Ponder.  The team sunk to a dismal record and he found himself replaced by Cassel, Freeman, and then Cassel again.

Ponder still has one year on his contract with Minnesota, but may find himself playing a backup role to whoever the Vikings choose to be their starter this upcoming year.  Or he may even end up on on a different squad if a team finds themselves willing to make a trade for Ponder as a backup or to compete for a starting job.

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Tags: Christian Ponder Josh Freeman Matt Cassel Minnesota Vikings

  • 3kolu

    He’s an ideal 3rd possible 2nd string QB. We still have him on payroll for another year, so either keep him or trade him for a draft pick. Then, we can go with Matt Cassel hit free agency and go after Matt Schaub, or we can get our franchise QB in the draft.

    • Josh Thompson

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHA!!!! Matt Schaub????? I can’t stop laughing.

      • 3kolu

        Schaub would be an upgrade over Cassel, and may be the most sought after QB in FA.

        • Josh Thompson

          Oh how I long for the idea of the Vikings bringing in another washed up never was QB in to be the savior. Warren Moon, Kelly Holcomb, Randall Cunningham, Brett Favre, Brad Johnson (the 2nd time) Gus Frerotte, Jeff Goerge, Donovan McNabb, yeah I can clearly see why you would want to bring an aging veteran to “manage the offense” What with all the success we have had in the past with that line of thinking. But I do like the idea of having NFL record holders on the team, the most consecutive games with a pick 6 is impressive. But seriously, in 10 years Schaub has only completed 5 full seasons. The guy misses half a season with a hang nail, and we just watched him have one of the worst seasons of his career and completely implode in an offense that he has been playing in for 7 years. Not to mention he was just never that good to begin with. How you think that he would be an upgrade over a younger mediocre QB who knows our team and has already developed a rapport with Greg Jennings is beyond me. Matt schaub has never done well in cold environments (he played his first 3 years in a dome in Atlanta and the next 7 in Texas) need I remind you that the Vikings will be playing outdoors for the next 2 years possibly 3. I don’t care if he is the most sought after QB this year in free agency. The biggest mistake the Vikings can make at the QB spot (besides giving Ponder the job back) would be to bring in Matt Schaub. We might as well try to entice Favre back into the league with that line of thinking.

          • 3kolu

            And so the genius move is to reach for another franchise QB? It’s all about upgrading, and Schaub is definitely better than Cassel last time I checked. Younger they’re a few months apart. Schaub has him beat in just about every category, comp pct, td’s, td to int pct., come on do your due diligence. Plus, I don’t think Houston will let Schaug go so easiliy, unlike Cassel. In this years draft there are no locks/Lucks. Schaub, has still been able to make the playoffs more than Cassel and it’s because of a suspect O Line that he got injured in the 1st place. Bring back Favre, that’s ludicrous. The FIRST, thing we need to do is bring in a head coach and staff, then determine which direction we want to go. We have no idea who’ll be the 1st QB taken. And, I’m not sold on Brdgewater, thin frame, suspect competition. Derk Carr, David Carr reincarnate, inability to perform on the bog stage, Johnny Manziel, serious character issues and lack of a big arm. I like Bortles but he’d best be served as with all these young QB’s to sit the pine for a couple seasons. I believe Ryan mallet may be on the block and that could answer a few of the tough questions. A young, franchise type QB with a huge arm. Mobility is minimal, but he has good size. And with all your banter, your non-committal, what is your intelligent response, “bring back Favre.” News flash, he’s finished, headed to the hall. So whats your suggestion, I don’t see one in your response. If your going to criticize have a solution.

  • 3kolu

    I actually have a great idea. Trade Ponder for a low draft pick. Sign David Carr out of retirement, and draft Derek Carr and let his big bro mentor him.

    • Josh Thompson

      That is most decidedly NOT a great idea…

      • 3kolu

        Except for trading Ponder which is a great idea, I was being ironic.

  • Lisa Guevara

    First of all, who is going to want to trade for Ponder. Looks like we will have to keep him thru his contract, but our new coach (who ever he may be) will never put him back into a starter role. Not happening!

    • 3kolu

      Where did you get the idea that anyone would put Ponder back into a starting role? What response were you reading. Even though Ponder struggled to be consistent this year, 2nd string QB’s are at a premium, look at Matt Flynn. He had 1 great game with the Pack and got traded by 1 team and cut by 2 teams this year before guiding the Pack into the playoffs. Ponder was rated as the 51st QB, that suggests to me that there would be a few teams that would be interested in upgrading the backup QB position. Keyword, “Backup”.

  • holymomentumbatman#84

    All signs point to the fact that when pick #8 rolls around, Carr will probably be the most likely QB for the Vikings to take, notwithstanding something really bizarre. They could also surprise everybody and take Tajh Boyd. He’s big, strong, has a very good arm, mobile, (somewhat ), and is able to throw the deep ball, and hit WR’s in stride. We’ll see. BUT, my take on any mentoring that is possibly involved, shouldn’t be done by Casell. He just isn’t GOOD ENOUGH