Why Give Christian Ponder Only Two Plays?


Aug 9, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder (7) drops back and looks to the pass the ball in the first quarter against the Houston Texans at the Metrodome. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone else has weighed in on the Christian Ponder two plays controversy so I might as well. First off let me say that this is a completely absurd “controversy” and the media people who continue pumping air into it – looking at you Judd Zulgad – ought to be ashamed of themselves. But here I go doing the same thing. I guess I’m a fraud.

So as near as I can figure, this whole silly thing boils down to one question: why bother playing Christian Ponder at all if you’re only going to give him two plays? Obviously the plan was to give him one series then yank him with the rest of the offensive starters. But the plan went awry when Ponder’s second pass of the game was picked off.

“Okay,” goes the argument I keep hearing. “So why not adjust your plan after the pick and give Ponder one more series? If you put him out there with the intention of getting him some work, then get him some work. And if you don’t think he needs the work, then why play him at all?”

The folks making the above argument seem a tad befuddled over the decision to play Ponder only one series. But I don’t think there’s anything to be befuddled about. It’s pretty obvious what the plan was. Get Ponder out there for a series in front of the home fans and hope he does something good. Let him hear some cheers. Give him a little confidence boost.

Okay so he didn’t make his big play. He didn’t hear his cheers. No big deal since it’s only a preseason game. Funny how that works too. If he makes some plays it shows he’s progressing, but if he gets picked it doesn’t matter?

We could play that game all day too. Bottom line on this? Ponder’s state-of-mind is obviously still a concern. He’s had an up-and-down camp so far and he has probably heard the criticism coming from the media and fans. Best way to turn that around for him and get a good feeling going? Big play in front of the Metrodome crowd. Cheers and love from the home folks.

Pretty sad that a third year quarterback still needs the ego boost. But the Vikings obviously think he does. How fragile is Ponder’s psyche anyway? And how far are the Vikings willing to go with their coddling? They already traded away Percy Harvin to protect Ponder’s feelings. And they let his wife hang around the team all the time to hold his hand.

Kind of pathetic. But not surprising given what we’ve already seen of pouty Ponder and his ways. I wish this guy would toughen up a little.

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