Minnesota Vikings QB Coach Has Right Mindset, Won't Make Excuses for Christian Ponder

By Andrew Fisher
Christian Ponder
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

It’s easy to blame your team’s quarterback when things aren’t going well. That’s just what happens in the NFL. Minnesota Vikings‘ fans were most certainly blaming Christian Ponder for the team’s loss to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, despite the fact that he played pretty well. Adrian Peterson stood up for Ponder following the game, but now the Vikings’ quarterbacks coach has piped up on the issue of blame.

Here’s what Craig Johnson had to say on Ponder:

“The bottom line is, and he knows this, if you do not win the game, you’re getting the blame. That’s just the way it is. Suck it up. You’re no different than quarterbacks in every other part of the country. When you lose, you’re getting the blame. That’s part of the deal.”

You can’t really argue with Johnson’s statement. Whether it’s fair or not, he’s right. QB’s get the blame at every level of football when things don’t go well.

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While Ponder hasn’t been that bad this year, he also hasn’t been that good. His protection hasn’t been quite as good as a year ago, but his current 2/5 touchdown to interception ratio isn’t going to get the job done. He’s proven he can make all of the throws, even though he doesn’t make them consistently, so now it’s just a matter of honing his skills.

Ponder isn’t the sole reason the Vikings are 0-3, but he’s a factor in it. Playing well, isn’t going to be enough going forward. Therefore, I agree with Johnson. Ponder needs to suck it up and get better. If he doesn’t and the team’s losing ways continue, it will no doubt spell the end of his tenure in Minnesota.


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