Sid Hartman: Ponder was NFL's best in red zone

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 8, 2012 - 1:15 AM

Rick Spielman sees good things in the future for his 2011 Vikings draft class, led by their first-round selection.

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richterscaleJan. 7, 12 8:40 PM

Ponder, best redzone QB in NFL? Problem was he could only get there 1 or 2 times per game. He only scored on like 9 possessions in final 4 games... half of them after turnovers or on-side kicks.

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yathinksoJan. 7, 12 8:55 PM

LMAO, most meaningless stat of the year so far. Dalton looked SOOOOOO much better than Ponder today. And he was drafted much later. FIRE RICK SPIELMAN

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napoleanJan. 7, 1210:51 PM

Ignore the unimpressive 70.1 QB rating. I'm a stat guy but that stat isn't important. It's true he couldn't lead us into the red zone often enough to win games but when he did he scored points. That's what matters. Points from the red zone. In fact, he was the best quarterback in the NFL for scoring points in the red zone. Better than Drew Brees, Aaron Rogers, Big Ben and all the overrated rookies like Dalton, Newton, Tebow and the rest. This kid has proven himself to be as good as they come at this early stage in his career. Don't let the wins and losses record blind you to that reality. After all, You can take it from me. I'm paid to figure this stuff out.

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purpleliesJan. 7, 1211:45 PM

Spielman's analysis is exactly why he and the purple will continue to lose for some time to come. None of this means a thing when you finish the season 3-13, LAST in your division (again) and have a head coach that has yet to beat a divisional opponent. Spielman along with Zygi, his brother Mark "The Wimp" and head coach Leslie Frazier have NO business whatsover doing what they do at the NFL level. The 2012 season will be even more embarrassing for this franchise in regards to the product that will be on the field and all these stooges mentioned above are to blame!!!

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steavis61067Jan. 8, 12 2:29 AM

@purplelies - "Has convinced himself that the vikingsactually finished 13-3 instead of the 3-13 season that was reality. Also, given that you made the prediction before the seaso started that the vikings with Leslie Frazier were going to win the NFC North Division with Donovan McFlabb as the strting QB gives you absolutely NO credibilty" ................ At least you're living up to your screen name, as I predicted McNabb would get benched LOL. Try again!

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bplarsonJan. 8, 12 3:00 AM

Ponder was running for his life the last half of the season. He was limited to 5 step drops and as soon as his back foot hit the turf he had someone on him. He showed pocket awareness and the ability to escape when needed. When he gets a full offseason and they put even an average line in front of him he will excel. Most often the Vikings were in a 2 TE set with a FB and extra TE kept in to block. When you only have 3 guys running patterns it limited his options. He'll be just fine and if he works at it he could be very good.

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arch0049Jan. 8, 12 5:33 AM

Hahahaha, I needed a good laugh this morning. Of course when players like Drew Brees, Tom Brady and Aaron Rogers consistently throw touchdowns of 21+ yards that doesn't help them in that very unimportant stat. GUESS WHAT STAT WINS SUPER BOWLS... WINS/LOSSES... PTS SCORED/GIVEN UP. Ponder had no quality wins this year, and maybe 1.5 good games. JUST LIKE HIS SAD COLLEGE CAREER. NO QUALITY WINS and a few good games each year.

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comment229Jan. 8, 12 6:36 AM

What a mess at quarterback. We took Ponder and now have the opportunity to take a college superstar quarterback in this next draft. It is rich in future NFL quarterbacks. Then Ponder slips a little bit and Webb comes in like superman and it was FUN to watch him excite the crowds. All this when every viking fan knows that the offensive line is one of THE worst in the NFL and half the defensive players could be released and honestly, no other NFL team would pick them up. And don't get me started on the play calling and defensive coaching. I watched a very good Detroit team lose big last night, and GB is not going away anytime soon. Chicago is a gamble and lost due to injuries. It is time to trade down, get several good offensive lineman, and a deep threat at WR. Add to that some defensive backs and a new philosophy other than that damn Tampa 2. Signed: Frustrated Viking Fan

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dlhoff16Jan. 8, 12 7:38 AM

It's true; Ponder did a fine job of handing off the ball to Adrian Peterson in the red zone. I don't think that Brees or Brady or even that Packer guy could have done it any better.

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clermontJan. 8, 12 7:46 AM

Spielman says stats tell the story, well how come the Packers and the Patriots have the worst defenses in the league and we're gonna watch them on TV. We went from the frying pan to the fire.

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