Is Musgrave More To Blame Than Ponder?


Dec 9, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave against the Chicago Bears at the Metrodome. The Vikings defeated the Bears 21-14. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

In week 1 of the NFL season, the Detroit Lions dismantled the offense of the Minnesota Vikings.  Most fans blame quarterback Christian Ponder.  Some fans blame dismal play from the offensive line.  You don’t hear much blame being put on the offensive coordinator.

Jul 26, 2013; Mankato, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder (right) talks with offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave (left) during training camp at Minnesota State University. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave has a history of failure as a coach.  Over the course of his 16 year coaching career, we have seen Musgrave be passed around  like a Christmas fruitcake that nobody wants.  He has seen time in Oakland, Philadelphia, Carolina, the University of Virginia, Jacksonville, Washington, Atlanta and finally Minnesota.

With the play calling in Minnesota being both predictable and vanilla, it may not be Christian Ponder’s fault that he is unable to succeed.  Last year, Musgrave looked smart by calling a lot of screen passes, passes to the flat and of course, runs with Adrian Peterson.  But a team has to be more unpredictable than that.  The Vikings offense offers few surprises for defenses who know to stack the box and take away any short to intermediate passes.

Until Minnesota is able to open the playbook and make teams pay for stacking the box against the Vikings, this team will continue to struggle.  Bill Musgrave should be on a short leash this year until he can prove that he can come up with successful game plans on a regular basis and be able to utilize his talent to the fullest.