I don’t think there’s much of an argument to be made that Christian Ponder is under-performing in his second year in the NFL. The 24-year old has widely exceeded expectations in 2012.
Sunday, he took the field in what was unquestionably his toughest road test of the young season against the Washington Redskins. Ponder and the Minnesota Vikings were unsuccessful and walked out of FedEx Stadium with a 38-26 loss.
Some will point the finger at Ponder who threw two pretty bad interceptions, one of which ended the game with 22 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
While both of these picks were bad throws, I’m still not discouraged with the young quarterback. Overall he played very well, completing 35 of 52 passes for 352 yards and 2 touchdowns.
His statistics certainly don’t tell the whole story, but they do show how effective Ponder was against the Redskins. In the fourth quarter, the Vikings were nearly able to move the ball at will through the air, and they almost pulled off a huge comeback. Even if Ponder had connected on another touchdown pass late with 22 seconds left, the team’s chances were slim and none at that point anyway, mainly due to the defense’s inability to contain Robert Griffin III.
Overall, I’m incredibly pleased with Ponder’s development, and I’m not going to knock him for a couple bad throws in a tough road game. It happens. However, I would like to see him get better in the red zone.
The Vikings are settling for too many field goals, and part of that falls on Ponder. He’s got to find a way to get his team in the end zone, whether it’s through the air or with his legs, he must start making more plays inside the twenty if this team is going to be a legitimate playoff contender.