Christian Ponder's performance continues hot potato at Vikings' QB
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MINNEAPOLIS - Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder said Sunday night's game was his chance to grab the starting job and "not give it back."
In his 30th start, Ponder converted 2-of-8 third-down attempts as the Vikings offense gained 243 yards, most in garbage time, as they stayed on the field for a season-low 19:06-of-60:00. The Vikings fall to 1-6 after the 44-31 loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night.
"I felt in sync all week. I felt fine out there. I thought we were making a smooth transition from Josh [Freeman] to myself. I thought we'd be fine," Ponder said. "We didn't have that many plays."
Coach Leslie Frazier did not make a commitment to one of his three quarterbacks, all of which have started games this season.
Ponder stepped back in after losing his starting role first to a rib injury he suffered in the Sept. 22 loss to the Cleveland Browns. After Ponder was cleared to play, Frazier opted to go with backup Matt Cassel to the tune of a 35-10 loss against the Carolina Panthers.
Freeman made his debut in Monday night's loss to the New York Giants before Freeman's concussion opened the door for Ponder to take his job back.
"[Ponder] had some moments where he did some good things, for example the two-minute drive," Frazier said. "There were times he wasn't as comfortable as you'd like to see him in the pocket, but he did some positive things as well."
Ponder's lone bright spot on the night included a two-minute drill to end the first half, in which he completed five of six passes as running back Adrian Peterson capped off the eight-play, 77-yard drive with an eight-yard touchdown run.
In the second half, Ponder completed just five of eight passes and took two sacks. The Vikings had 16 second-half plays across four drives. The Packers had scoring drives of 14-, 15- and 17-plays.
The lack of field time meant Peterson saw just 13 carries, tied for the most he's seen in the last three games. The Vikings had just 43 plays, with Ponder dropping back on 29 of them.
"Really, the offense didn't see the field much today," Peterson said. "I felt like Christian [Ponder] did a good job. It's black and white; we understand what it is. Last week the offense didn't play great. We didn't play that great tonight."
The Vikings haven't made a decision on who will start at quarterback against the Dallas Cowboys on Nov. 3, per Frazier.
"We'll sit down [Monday] and talk it through and figure out what's the best way to go," Frazier said.