Saturday, March 28, 2015
Tags Posts tagged with "christian ponder"

christian ponder

The Vikings might not think they need to upgrade their starting quarterback position, but if the one playoff game they were able to play last season proved anything, it is that they desperately need a better backup option.

The Vikings have been linked, in passing, to Chiefs soon-to-be-displaced quarterback Matt Cassel ever since news broke that the Chiefs were swinging a trade for Alex Smith.  Cassel was believed to be a candidate for release as recently as Wednesday, but now the Chiefs appear to have held off on that with hopes of finding a trade partner.

One of those trade partners might be the Vikings.  The rumors continued to filter through the likes of Twitter and other unreliable sources of information, but it also started to get some attention from more main stream media outlets, and it appears as though this might have some legs behind it.

“Continue to hear Vikings really like Cassel,” NFL Network‘s Jason La Canfora tweeted late on Wednesday.

This is about the most quarterback-less offseason I can remember, as the Draft and free agent class are both greatly lacking any star power, but there are still some options that exist that would not require any picks to obtain.  Recently released Ryan Fitzpatrick and free agent Tyler Thigpen are both available, as is veteran signal caller Jason Campbell.

Cassel is currently set to make $7.5 million in 2013, the same salary the Vikings were in line to pay Antoine Winfield, but I would assume a new contract would be a top priority if they did decide to trade to obtain Cassel as a backup to Christian Ponder.  His 2014 salary is scheduled to increase to $9 million, according to Rotoworld.  

We are now two days deep into free agency and the Vikings have yet to sign any players that didn’t play for them last year, but at least the rumor mill is starting to heat up.

by -
6

Percy Harvin seems very happy to be a millionaire in a new location that, incidentally enough, has no income tax and just legalized marijuana (yup, had to go there).

Despite all of the drama that led up to his eventual trade to Seattle, Harvin had nothing but nice things to say about the Minnesota Vikings and their fans.

“I have nothing but love for that whole Vikings organization,” Harvin told NFL Network. “And from the texts I’ve been getting today and yesterday, they have nothing but love for me.”

“It’s absolutely false. Me and Coach Frazier have a great relationship,” he said when asked about reports that he was, at least at times, at odds with coach Leslie Frazier. “He has the utmost respect for me, and I have the utmost respect for him.”

Then Harvin laid some of the blame for the drama at the feet of the media.

“We were talking almost every day (and) texting each other,: he said.  “We both understood what the situation was. I think this whole thing was blown up (by media). We did have our ups and downs.”

Harvin was briefly pressed about his opinion of quarterback Christian Ponder.  While he was plenty willing to rave about his new quarterback Russell Wilson, and plenty willing to say he had love for the Minnesota Vikings, he opted for a “no comment” on the Ponder question.

by -
5

Percy Harvin is currently being introduced to Seattle, via a press conference being broadcast on NFL Network, which is just painful to watch.

Harvin went out of his way to thank “Vikings Nation” which included the fans and organization, saying that it was a great four year run.  Harvin went on to describe being a Seahawk as a “big relief,” however, and had a million dollar smile from the get-go.

He went out of his way to say that Russell Wilson’s comparisons to Brett Favre were very attractive to him when agreeing to making Seattle his new team (the trade had to have been contingent on a new deal for him, so he did have some control) which seems to confirm that Harvin did not view Christian Ponder as a passer with what it takes to win the Super Bowl.

I am sure that Rick Spielman would like to orchestrate an offseason that sees the 31st ranked passing game take great strides forwards.  That is easier said than done, especially when your offseason begins with losing two of your top receivers.

One guy they did retain, however, is Jerome Simpson.  Simpson joined the Vikings on a one year deal last season, after his three game suspension was officially announced by the NFL, with high hopes that he could help ignite some sort of vertical game.  His season was plagued by injury and turned out to be quite disappointing, having never scored a touchdown or even gaining more than 50 yards in any game.

Still, the Vikings apparently see some of that potential there, and are hoping he stays healthy enough to be a legitimate threat in 2013.  They extended him to a one year deal, and the financials aren’t yet known yet, but I am willing to bet that it is equal to, or less than, the $2 million deal he signed last year.

Simpson’s signing was basically a zero risk move that gives the Vikings some flexibility.  He could be better in 2013, having seemed to start developing a chemistry with Christian Ponder towards the end of the year, and will get another chance to stay healthy and put together a full season.

If Spielman manages to fill out the depth chart with high quality playmakers then Simpson, who presents little special teams value, could still be expendable when it comes time to make final cuts.

Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports has been at the forefront of the Percy Harvin story, including a recent report that Harvin nearly walked out on his team last season, and he is tidying up this whole saga by tossing one last dose of fuel onto the fire.

Cole asserts that unhappiness with the Vikings quarterback situation, specifically Christian Ponder, was a primary driver behind Harvin’s desire to leave Minnesota.

According to two sources, the straw that broke the Vikings’ back with Harvin is when he bemoaned the fact that quarterback Christian Ponder, a 2011 first-round pick, was not good enough. That came even though Ponder consistently fed Harvin the ball.

The rumors of a trade seemed to cause unrest within Vikings fan circles.  The trade itself seems to have divided them.  Now, this report that pins some blame on Ponder may end up causing blogs and message boards to get downright nasty, at least on sites with less refined and civilized readers than we are lucky enough to have here at VT.

Some, like Christopher Gates of the Daily Norseman, will question the report and/or Harvin’s sanity since his production was never as high as it was last season, prior to his injury, with Ponder at quarterback.  He was getting manufactured touches, getting touches at running back and on special teams, and was on his way to career highs and MVP consideration before he hurt his ankle in, ironically enough, Seattle.

Others, like this hack blogger who lacks common sense, think that Harvin’s supposed gripes were plenty founded and that Christian Ponder has yet to prove that he has what it takes to lead a championship team.  Harvin’s complaints, despite his personal accomplishments, might just prove that he is a fierce competitor that simply wanted to win football games and was willing to speak his mind when he felt somebody was holding the team back.

He might have learned that from Randy Moss, who once told anyone that would listen that Brad Childress should be fired.

I’m not saying that complaining about your young quarterback is a recommended course of action, but I also can’t call Harvin any nasty names because of it when I, myself, was not satisfied with Ponder’s play in 2012.

What we do know is that Ponder has what appears to be the full support of Rick Spielman and his staff.  Here’s hoping he doesn’t make them regret that loyalty.

Get Social

2,720FansLike
4,653FollowersFollow