Hartman: Fan and media criticism doesn't bother Vikings' Ponder

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 15, 2013 - 12:03 AM

It’s amazing to see the amount of criticism directed at Christian Ponder from fans and the media alike. The 25-year-old, who last season became the second-youngest starting quarterback in Vikings history to take the team to the playoffs (behind Daunte Culpepper), already has people calling for him to be replaced following the season-opening 34-24 loss at Detroit last week.

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joeshafferSep. 14, 13 9:12 PM

We are football fans. We are Vikings fans. We want wins, we want rings. What else is the guy supposed to say? Hes not going to bench himself. The coaches know they are replaceable too. He has to stay positive in his comments. Only one team wins the Superbowl, but without some Divine intervention it wont be us. At least Ponder is no Moss or Ocho-Cinco or Vick off the field. Wish he could be as good as them on the field! GO VIKES!!!!

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reeksonSep. 14, 1310:37 PM

Why is it so 'amazing' to hear the fans criticizing Ponder? And, he didn't 'lead' his team anywhere last year! The first half was almost single-handedly salvaged by Harvin, and the second half was salvaged by Peterson. Really, you must have some fondness for Ponder that goes beyond just a review of his football skills. I really think that some around here are just pulling so hard for this guy, for whatever reasons, that they are willing to overlook his lack of talent for the position just to back him up.

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vikeforlifeSep. 14, 1311:35 PM

Coaches evaluate by wins fans evaluate by stats. The Vikes were 10-6 last year and made the playoffs and who knows what would have happened if Ponder could have played in the playoff game? After 10-6 last year the Vikes should not bench Ponder after an 0-1 start. Luckily Ponder does not care what is said about him by fans and media because he has been under constant criticism since he was drafted. So he is not cocky or attention grabbing like Rodgers or old #4, but I for one like Ponder's demeanor on and off the field. One does not have to be a "Diva" to be an effective NFL Qb Just ask Payton Manning. Ponder has had his downfalls some just down right boneheaded,but he is the best option for this team and I am an avid Vikings fan so I am going to wish for him to turn the corner as an NFL Qb because he has done nothing to make me do otherwise.

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vor2vorSep. 15, 13 1:54 AM

Frazier said something along the lines of - it wasn't only Ponder who didn't perform to expectations, against the Lions. He's right, Musgrave didn't perform, either. Musgrave is supposedly an offensive mastermind who develops QB's - when does that START? Is Musgrave aware of the talent he has among his current crop of receivers, veteran and rookie? You wouldn't know it by the amount of participation they have during a game. When does all of this - begin? This is Musgrave's offense. If they can't execute, and win, it's time for BOTH Ponder AND Musgrave to pack their bags.

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bruisedupSep. 15, 13 4:29 AM

I don't think the Vikings running game helps the passing game because having 8 defenders in the box is the perfect way to defend Musgrave's offense. It's a ball control offense that really doesn't pull defenders away from the line so there's always pressure on the quarterback. A long passing game needs to be added to the short passing game to pull defenders away from the line of scrimmage. The defenders need to be spread out. For Detroit, a short passing game needed to be added to their long ball threat. They are dangerous now with both Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush. The Vikings have plenty of short passing options. As soon as Ponder finds that receiver he can throw long to with success the Vikings will take off on offense. Culpepper wasn't that great but he looked great with Moss running deep and Carter catching everything that wasn't deep. The biggest question is Ponder's accuracy when throwing deep but his throws will not have to be perfect if the receivers have the talent to bring the ball down. I think there is more than one Viking receiver with that talent.

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huckfinnSep. 15, 13 7:49 AM

Who cares what Ponder thinks? It's obvious he's a mediocre QB. He has poor footwork, a weak arm, makes bad decisions and gets rattled. He'll never be an above average NFL QB.

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vashrinkSep. 15, 13 8:34 AM

Huckfinn said what I was going to say...nobody expects Ponder to remove himself from the field...it's not his fault they drafted him and play him..that onus is on Spielmann/Frazier...listen to Jimmy Johnson who last week said on Fox BEFORE the game: "Vikings Fans who are waiting for Ponder to turn into an elite quarterback, it's not going to happen!"

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zyxwvuSep. 15, 13 8:46 AM

I don;t really care if it bothers him or not, clearly it has no impact on his ordinary level of play. You play a professional sport (even if you don't play it at a professional level), it comes with the territory.

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jachesteSep. 15, 13 8:59 AM

With great power comes great responsibility. No one on the field touches the ball more than Ponder. He controls offense. If he can't perform, he eliminates our chances to be a playoff caliber team. This is nothing personal. It's just the facts. He doesn't deserve to start if he can't perform.

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stlynnSep. 15, 13 9:20 AM

Maybe fan and media criticism should bother him....I have given up on the Twins and now feel like I may give up on the Vikings after one game. It is tired to be hopeful about any team except, perhaps, the Lynx. Too bad they are "females" and not many care; because they are a class organization with star players and a good coach. Minnesota fans whine about not having any decent team to root for....what about the LYNX?

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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2013 preseason     
Aug 9 - vs. Houston 7 pmX27-13
Aug 16 - at Buffalo 6 pmX20-16
Aug 25 - at San Francisco 7 pmX34-14
Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee 7 pmX24-23
2013 regular season     
Sep 8 - at Detroit NoonX34-24
Sep 15 - at Chicago NoonX31-30
Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland NoonX31-27
Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London) NoonX34-27
Oct 6 - Bye
Oct 13 - vs. Carolina NoonX35-10
Oct 21 - at. NY Giants 7:40 pmX23-7
Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay 7:30 pmX44-31
Nov 3 - at Dallas NoonX27-23
Nov 7 - vs. Washington 7:25 pmX34-27
Nov 17 - at Seattle 3:25 pmX41-20
Nov. 24 - at Green Bay Noon26-26
Dec 1 - vs. Chicago NoonX23-20
Dec 8 - at Baltimore NoonX29-26
Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia NoonX48-30
Dec 22 - at Cincinnati NoonX42-14
Dec 29 - vs. Detroit NoonX14-13

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